Am I Successful Yet?
When I first figured out that popular kids in highschool actually do throw parties and get drunk and smoke pot and have sex, I was 13 and very very afraid.
Would that be me someday?
Would that be me- tumbling over furniture and slurring my words, leading boys up to my bedroom, inviting them to take advantage of me?
I couldn’t believe it.
Four years later and here I am, a rising senior in high school, and I still can’t believe it.
What is so important about being popular that you’re willing to break laws and your brain cells to be considered part of the in-crowd? Why do high schoolers look at their lives through glass stained with the present, as though the future doesn’t exist?
As though the only thing that matters in life is what your fellow peers-who are just as insecure and lost as you are- think of you.
Pretty pathetic, actually, that instead of aiming to achieve good grades to get into a good college that will provide us with good jobs for the rest of our working lives, we aim to be liked by people whose names we won’t even remember in 5 years.
But, what’s even more pathetic is what we are willing to do to become popular, to be ‘successful’ in high school.
‘Success’ in high school is judged based off of the amount of beers you can chug, how often you get high, how many girls or guys you’ve fucked.
As a straight A student who prefers spending her friday evenings with her parents, I’m ranked “Homeless Man in the Suburbs” on the high school success scale. But you can bet when I walk through the doors of my high school for the last time and enter the real world, I’ll become Bill Gates overnight.
Out there in the real world, success depends not on your alcohol tolerance but on your job or lack thereof.
On your hard work and verbal communication with job leaders and business partners, instead of your physical communication with the other sex.
On your diligence to learn, instead of your diligence to drink.
But perhaps the most pathetic part of this whole plethora of pathetic teenage behavior is that not only do we willingly engage in ridiculously stupid and illegal activities in hopes of being liked, but we constantly blame society for our behavior.
We are told about the horrid peer pressure in highschool, about how strong society’s strong hold can be. We hear stories about teenagers so desperate for acceptance they forcefully squeeze themselves into the mold society deems as acceptable.
Forced to cut off an ear here, a finger there, it doesn’t matter in the end if they fit.
We’re taught to have sympathy for these poor teenagers, taught to forgive them for their behavior, because after all, anyone put under such scrutiny has a breaking point, right?
Teachers and parents aren’t always going to be there to hold our hands and wipe our tears, telling us “it’s okay to stay sober, it’s okay to be different.”
I say we face society balls to the wall and cling to our morality as though it’s our last sip of water in a million mile dessert.
After all, that’s what morality has become in high school,
extremely crucial but extremely scarce.
You watch the popular kids, the elite of high school society- and wish to be like them.
It must be so nice, simply not caring what happens to you.
You wish you could focus solely on ‘having fun’, like they do.
You want the constant swarm of friends and admirers, like they have.
But little did you know, the ‘popular’ kid you idolized for downing 13 beers at a party in high school turned into an alcoholic, in-and-out-of-jail, drug dealer father who abuses his children.
But hey- at least he was popular in high school.
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