With the school year about to start again, YAY, YAHOO, WHAT! WHAT!… yeah I’m a mom of 3. Anyway, what was I saying? Oh yeah, with the school year about to start again, FANTASTICAL!, I have compiled some pep talks we should give the children, especially middle school and high school aged. Profanity laced because kids remember better when there’s the occasional use of profanity. It’s like it flips the real talk switch.
My nephew is a teen, and I can vouch that the kids today are much bigger asshats than the ones of yesteryear who are now online telling you that you should die a thousand deaths covered in hornets and mosquitoes who all carry STDs because you didn’t breastfeed for longer than a week. Yes, their kids are better at the asshattery than they are. And your kid? Well he’s about to meet their kid. Without any adult supervision. Lord of the Flies.
Face it. Teachers and administration today really don’t give a shit about bullying, they are educators, not babysitters, and some of them are the biggest bullies in the school. Your kid is about to dive into a world of savage children and adults, again, without your protection, and attempt to survive another school year in hopes to make it without a drug addiction or serving jail time. Fuck learning. Just get through the day.
It’s really sad it has come to this, you know, because we adults created the system this way. No matter how many mom bloggers and credible journalists write about bullying, no matter how many students write notes about how they were bullied and it led them to shooting up the school killing innocent children, no matter how many suicides take place as a result of bullying, we adults are so cold-hearted to turn our heads away from that because there are more important issues at stake, like gun control.
So I’ve put together a little social survival guide pep talk…
1. The one that inspired this post…
This is probably the most important rule to follow. Not only does it protect you from catching the butthurt, but it also helps you in the popularity realm because this is alpha male behavior. Kids don’t follow followers. They follow the person who just doesn’t give a shit. The resiliency to any form of rejection is a key component to surviving high school. You should master this skill to a point where you can ask a member of the opposite sex out, and they say no, and you are like, “whatever” and then you ask out their friend.
The important thing to remember is unless you are an asshole, people’s feelings tend to be more of a product of their own internal struggle more so than any external reason. In other words, if you are a good kid, and a kid doesn’t like you, most likely the other kid just has an issue and it has nothing to do with you. Self hate is a mysterious, strange phenomenon, and that’s usually what you are up against when it comes to haters.
I know when you are stuck in a savage world surrounded by less-than-human beast-like behavior, your first instinct, as a savage animal in the wild kingdom, is to either beat the shit out of someone, or maybe fight back with weapons. Don’t do it. Contrary to what the video games and gangsta rap has to say on the subject, violence is not cool. If you like violence, like have a natural inclination to kicking ass, then may I suggest keeping your nose clean and when you become of age, join the Marine Corps because no civilian is ever as badass as a Marine. Period. Otherwise, the popular majority really views violent people as monsters. If you have been viewed as such, it is not you who they view as that, but the violence you portray. Many times we turn to violent behavior in an attempt to scare people into being decent, and it doesn’t work that way.
I know this because I used to get into fights. I used fear as a source to control other kids around me. And I did this because I was sick of being bullied. It never worked as well as love and joy. Instead of punching someone in the face, or dropping something heavy on their foot “by accident,” try making others laugh with any kind of dumbfuckery that isn’t mean. You’ll make more friends that way and finish the day feeling better about yourself. If they don’t like you, refer to rule number 1. Some people just are never going to be decent.
Ok, there are some exceptions to this rule. Being a bigger asshole to the asshole is sometimes entertaining, as long as you don’t go overboard and it’s all in the name of fun. The important thing is, don’t be mean to nice people. There’s no reason for it. Your unkind words should never be an offense. Never throw the first insult.
What you stand for should speak for itself. If you stand for good things, you will be untouchable in the end. If you stand up for the nice guy, no teacher can fuck with you for that. If you stand up for the asshole, you are in a position where you need asshole things like lies, deceit, and more assholes to cover your ass. If you stubbornly stand for things like the truth, kindness, patience, compassion, love… You will grow as a person and bloom like a flower. If you stand for the opposite, you will probably achieve a short moment of glory before you fall, hard, and it will hurt.
Honestly, do you really want to have something like someone’s suicide on your conscience? I mean, what kind of person would you be to know that someone you were an ass to at school committed suicide a few days later claiming in their note it was because they couldn’t stand the bullying anymore? Don’t be a dick to people unless the situation warrants it.
When you got someone consistently fucking with you on a regular basis, you need an army of people who make you laugh, lift you up, and just be your friend. It’s a human wolf-like phenomenon, but I guarantee you, most social bullying takes place in the form of a pack against a loner. The only way through it without changing schools is to shift that balance of power. It’s the same way walking in the city late at night. They tell you to walk with people and not alone because most bad guys prey on someone walking by themselves, especially if they are female (assuming they see the female as the weaker gender, which it’s not). That’s the thing, wolves prey in packs on the weak and injured, and bullies are the same way. The easiest way to protect yourself is to find your tribe.
The tribe is the place where they make you feel better about yourself, where you are comfortable being who you are or comfortable not knowing who you are yet. Don’t be so quick to jump into defining your identity. That happens naturally on its own over a series of decades, and you’ll never totally figure out where you belong in the sense of how you define yourself and how you want others to perceive you. But the tribe isn’t about that. It’s about a group of friends just hanging out, having fun, and protecting each other on a social level. It’s the people who have no problem with your differences while embracing the similarities.
Many kids find their tribe by joining some extra-curricular activity. Sports teams generally stand up for each other, and you can even find some good friends joining the yearbook team. If you like acting, you will find other people who like acting by joining the drama club. The ROTC is probably the best place to find a lump-all-interest tribe because the military is designed to operate as a team despite how different you are from each other. I noticed with the loners, their biggest obstacle is their fear to try to find friends.
When I was in high school, I had a bunch of tribes by the time I hit my junior year. I had my first tribe I made friends with in 9th grade. They were just a group of misfit outcasts like myself, all very different, where our only common trait we shared was that we didn’t belong in any clique and we were too nice. Then I made friends with the popular nerd. She was a 4.0 student (all through college even) who had a little wild side about her. Then I made friends with a popular girl in general, through choir, which I didn’t sing but my mom taught choir. There I made some popular acquaintances who have become good friends throughout the years into adulthood. Then I found a clique I belonged. The g-funks. They loved me because I had money, and a car, and I was good at talking the police out of arresting anyone, and I loved them because I had a posse of ass kicking protection bouncers. I also loved hip-hop, so that worked out well. Of course, my parents hated it. By the time my senior year rolled around, I was friends with everyone who wasn’t a cheerleader or a jock, the group I hated the most. My biggest bullies. The irony? I hit college and my tribe there was the cheerleaders and football players. I say this because it doesn’t matter if it’s a reflection of who you are, or your identity, but just a group of people you get along with.
You don’t have to do everything they do. When I hung out with the g-funks, they smoked pot a lot, and drank a lot of booze. I never got drunk with them. I didn’t smoke pot with them. They didn’t care.
I know it’s cliche, but my reasons for this are not. I’m here to tell you that a good grade is not a sign of intelligence. It in no way reflects on whether or not you learned anything, or are ready for college, or could master any kind of job. It doesn’t really matter if you have good grades to get into college. Why then would someone want good grades?
The biggest issue in high school is having the faculty back you up over the next kid, especially when it comes to getting in trouble. You will have much more freedom as the teacher’s pet than as anything else. And the Principal? In every school system in the US, the principal is bombarded with bull shit from the board of education, and the most important thing to that principal is how well the school looks on paper. It is the kids with the high GPA, good attendance record, and who score high on standardized tests that make that principal. They know it. Most good principals will kiss your ass if you have a good GPA, a great attendance record, and score high on standardized tests.
I did this in high school. I took Honor’s Classes, and had a great attendance, and my GPA averaged 3.5. My mom taught at the school, so that helped, but not all the teachers liked me. The principal did. That mattered. A friend was expelled for missing school, and I had that turned over by simply telling the principal to reinstate her. I used to leave class in the middle of a lecture to go next door to get a diet coke, or to steal donuts and coffee from the teacher’s lounge. Nobody flinched. I remember one time this guy was following my sister around calling her a “n-bomb (he used the real word) loving whore.” I got in his face, threatened to kick his ass, using the fuck word every other word, and my principal tapped my shoulder. This guy’s face turned whiter than his normal crackerness when that principal showed up, and the principal asked, “Is this guy bothering you?” I replied, “Nothing I can’t handle myself, sir.” He replied, “Could you handle it elsewhere? because the teachers in the lounge can hear you, and your language is bothering them.” I replied, “I think we just made my point clear.”
The easiest way to get good grades is to show up to class on time and try (that means stay awake, actively take notes, and study a little). Teachers will give you better grades for showing effort and learning nothing than knowing the subject and showing no effort. Period. It’s the world we live in. If you know the subject, you have to pretend to know less than the teacher or you will get a teacher who just doesn’t like you.
But I promise you, good grades kick ass. Ever notice every story about a school-aged kid in the media, they tell you whether or not the kid got good grades? It mattered to these people. Trayvon Martin was shot by a neighborhood watch sociopath, and the question many people asked in order to decide who was innocent and guilty was, “What was Trayvon’s GPA?” Stupid isn’t it? Yes it is. But it’s the way of things, so that stupid GPA is important. You want that credibility.
One of my greatest accomplishments in high school was that day I realized my Principal was comfortable enough to say the word “Damn” to me, while mocking a clique I never really appreciated (the hippies, they could be downright mean for a group of pot-smoking peace-loving crunchy people). That’s the kind of relationship you want with the guy in charge.
Just remember these 5 things, and high school will not be a breeze. It will not be a snap of the fingers. But it will be bearable, conquerable, and you will survive it without jail time. And hopefully, through the miracles of Jesus, this generation of kids with a worse education than what my generation received, with less morals than were on the streets of my childhood, with more medication than before the FDIC became more lenient, and with more helicopter parenting of my time will grow up and fix all the bull shit my parents generation started and my generation provoked. In other words, you think high school is bad now? Wait until your kids are in high school.