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If I can't cope with AS, will I be able to do anything in my future? watch

    • Thread Starter

    Major stress from AS here. I'm averaging 5 hours of sleep a night, and I'm lucky if I see any friends outside of school more than once in two months.

    This bits a bit of a backstory, mostly because I wanted to rant a bit to get it out my system, you don't really have to read it.

    I used to have a job when I started year 12 but I was getting so behind on schoolwork that I had to quit and since then I had a huge backlog of work. (Also, my grandad got really ill and died around that time, so I'd go a few days without seeing my parents every so often and I have no siblings - my mum blames herself for leaving me on my own as to why I didn't do so well, but I HATE using that as an excuse, because obviously, it's my work, I didn't do it, therefore it's purely my fault).
    I was hoping to just move on, and concentrate on the latest things we were learning, since I understood the past work, it was just VERY time consuming, and I'd rather take more time to try and understand things we're doing now such as Biochemistry (which I find really difficult).
    I spent weeks and weeks working until 3am (without facebook/skype!) and waking up at 6 to get ready for school but I still had a couple [but nowhere near as much as before] of pieces of work outstanding so one one of my teachers started shouting at me for being 'lazy' and not trying. Due to the stress and lack of sleep, I just broke down and cried in the middle of my classroom.
    I got sent to the medical room, even though I knew I was physically okay, just as I say, stressed and tired - but she advised me to take the rest of the day off and rest. So I went home, but because I knew there was still a lot of work to catch up on (and new work coming in all the time) and my teacher would be even more angry if I didn't have any new work to hand in by the following day, I didn't get any rest at all - the only difference is I let myself go to sleep at midnight instead of 3.
    Obviously, this didn't help much but a week later, I finally got up to date.
    Then we had a residential trip in geography for a week. (2 weeks ago)
    My geography teachers decided to each set me double homework for missing their lessons (even though I was working constantly on geography on the trip, so I don't really get theat logic) and of course I had a weeks worth of work + homework to do in all my other lessons. I've caught up with most of the work I missed (in all subjects except maths) and there was just the extra homework my geography teacher set which I didn't finish.
    I had geography today.
    My teacher wasn't happy. I got told I was useless, and he has no idea why I can't do it and yet everyone else in the year can, and that I didn't deserve my place in 6th form.
    I'm not going to lie, it upset me. I'm dropping out at the end of this year, and I've been thinking about that for a while, but my friends are mad at me for just giving up (all my friends are straight A students who get their grades without much work, I'm an average C/B Student so they don't really understand why I find the work so difficult) and I told my parents who basically turned around and said:

    "I think you're just running away. I know A-Levels are hard - but you're going to be very disappointed if you think things are going to get easier from here on out. When you get a job you'll be working 9-5 and you won't get the holidays. Just think about it, if you can't do this, what will you be able to do?"

    I think it was her way of trying to get me to stick it out, but I really can't. Before A-levels, I had so many aspirations of going to university, now I want nothing more than to get out of this.
    I know if I didn't do 6th form, I'd take a year off to work (if I could get a job again) and get some money behind me, then take a course in something like business, or possibly, do a year working in America with the help of one of the speical groups that deal with that sort of thing. But I can't help but think I wouldn't even be able to do that now.
    If everything only gets harder from here on out, whats left to do? I'm not thinking anything suicidal, by the way. I've always been a generally optimistic person, but now I'm just confused, and doubting myself.

    Also, that was mostly me ranting to make myself feel better >_> and it did help a bit - but mostly my question is:

    Could I ever achieve anything without full a-levels if I did a college course or something?
    And, for those of you who did A-Levels, did you find life gets any less stressful when you got to work/university?

    Sorry for being so pessimistic there D: I don't like myself when I'm like that ^^; I'll cheer up again over Easter, hopefully ^^;

    But for now, *goes back to working*

    You sound like me, I got depressed one day in yr 12 last year and this carried on and on and I just gave up, didn't bother, and got even more depressed. You should just try scraping through into yr 13 with C's and D's and then complete yr 13, then it's your choice to go to uni.

    I think you need to get A-levels behind you, even if you do end up with CDD at the end of yr 13!

    Look at all the Polish cleaners, they don't have any A-Levels do they? So you'd do probably do just as well as any other British without A-Levels, not very well, because you're not Polish.

    And just to reassure you, there is no need to worry when it comes to coping with university educations. Because there are universities, courses and grades that are made accesible for everyone, that's including you. How about a 3rd class Honours in New Media Studies (it's new!) at the University of East London?

    Of course you can achieve something without a-levels, maybe take a btec or something? Not everyone gets on well with exams (I didn't read all that tbh, just the bit in bold.. )

    Not being able to cope with A-levels doesn't mean you're a failure, and it doesn't even mean you can't go to university, although it is true that further study doesn't get any easier. Unless the issue, of course, is that you don't enjoy your A-level subjects, which makes it 10 times more difficult to grasp them. If you chose a degree that suited you better, you might be onto a winner! Maybe speak to your careers adviser about your options there.

    Or, if you don't think further study is for you, then you could always go for a vocational course at college, or even get an apprenticeship. Although it's getting rarer, there are still plenty of jobs where you don't need a degree to do well. Large companies like Lockheed Martin take on apprentices as young as 16 when they've just finished their GCSEs, and every level of education you go up from there puts you one rung further up the ladder. But just because you start as a post-GCSE/AS/A2 apprentice doesn't mean you can't do really well.

    Some people just aren't suited to academic study; similarly those who are good at writing dissertations may not make very good builders, for example (sorry I couldn't think of a better example!!).

    As for your parents, I appreciate it can be really difficult to get the idea across to them that you just don't want to go to university, or even finish your A-levels. Maybe get a school tutor/careers adviser to help back you up if you do decide to make a move from education.

    I'd strongly suggest you at least give your AS levels a bash and see how it goes from there - you might be pleasantly surprised!

    Sorry if I covered something you'd already mentioned - I didn't read your post thoroughly!

    do a btec or something.

    Maybe you could try transferring to a more laid-back sixth form? Your current one sounds pretty brutal.

    My sixth form had a ridiculously easy-going feel to it, the only pressure was the pressure that you would put onto yourself. It sounds like your being pushed too hard and that it's the sixth form, not the course, which isn't right for you.

    (That's my opinion, anyway.)

    Jeeeesus, 6th form shouldn't be that stressful, it's not you but your school that sounds like it's at fault....Even the nerdiest of nerds at our school have some recreational time.

    Of course you can achieve things (even if you're unable to cope with A'levels)!
    You might be at a different place in you life right now than you will be in your future. Right now, I suppose the stress of 'Oh, this is what matters and solely what matters to get me into a good university/job' is getting to you. I think you should relax a little and just try to time manage a bit. Maybe you could take a break this weekend, not touch any of your books and get back during the week?

    I know what you're going through because although I was able to cope without any stress last year, I'm a bit more stressed this year because some of my circumstances have changed. I'm worried about a variety of things from university costs to visa processes to leaving my friends to just getting the grades and I think all theses factor in/spill over as stress while I'm at school or studying. It could be that this is the case for you? (Sorry I didn't read through thoroughly)

    Although, if you sincerely want to take another route then there are many other options than A'levels. However, I reckon that you should give at least AS levels a go as you've come so far. If you don't want to continue the next year then it's fine although maybe you'll be better able to cope as you might only be taking three subjects next year. Obviously, no one else knows your position better than yourself so the decision is entirely up to you.

    I'm so sorry that it's affecting you so negatively, I hope that things start to get better as I'm sure they will. (:

    ETA: Read some of the comments above, your sixth from does sound brutal.
    Being set extra homework even though you were on a geography field trip-eek!

    I would say stick it out really, you wouldn't want to have gone through this for nothing, right? Maybe look into some vocational courses to something that interests you. But I must agree I have never heard of someone being pushed that much at 6th form! I would have to agree that your parents are being rather hard on you in an attempt to make you want to stay, but as its been said before, only you know what the right thing is to do.
    • Thread Starter

    Thanks guys <3 I'm definatly going to take my AS exams, I can put up with this for the next couple months at least. I think I will look into more courses, I sat down and spoke to my mum about it, and I don't think she knew how stressed I was because she's now saying she doesn't mind me dropping out as long as I get a job/college course, which is fair enough, in my opinion. (Still think my dads a bit disappointed, but thats another story)
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