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    Hi,
    I'm 19 going on twenty. My biggest fear in life is not making anything of myself, but lately that's what I see my future becoming and it's scaring me. The worst part is being shadowed by my past failure. from secondary school I got into my boroughs best sixth form. My parents were thrilled as was I. From there I was studying 4 a levels. Everything was fine. Until suddenly i went from getting A's in my GCSEs to Ds and Us in my alevels. I didn't know where I was going wrong my confidence took a giant hit and no teachers helped me to improve. Infact if anything I got the impression they needed some people to fail to make the others look good. From there I lost motivation and had numerous problems during my academic years including losing a family member and having trouble with a student to the point where the police got involved. Unsurprisingly I wasn't let back and my mum was devasted. She was and still is dissapointed in me, and so am I for letting her and myself down. I then entered a new college, but again I had major issues at home and lost another family member. However I tried to strive on, during the last month of college I flunked so all two years of hard work went down the drain. I could have easily pushed on and got into a uni but if I can't commit to a levels how can I commit to a degree? I hate education and genuinely have no motivation for anything anymore. I feel like all talents I have are gone and now I just do a full time retail job. But what kills me
    Is seeing all my friends go off to uni thriving in their social life's and getting somewhere when I know I have so much potentional. I am not stupid. However I Struggle to apply myself to anything. But I realise what I could have been, a very happy girl with lots of friends meeting lots of people and getting good qualifications. Despite the fact I'm not dumb this education system basically has it so that if your not in the system you've practically failed life in the eyes of everyone. I thought of doing things like YouTube, travelling, taking up hobbies but everything I'm bad at or don't feel good enough in now. It kills me to know what I could have been and where I am now, left behind from all my friends. The worst thing is I don't feel like I have any options. I want to do animation(the art design part) or study psychology but there's no apprenticeships in this. To go to uni I'd have to beg my college to let me finish that last month so I can actually have a qualification but I'm too ashamed of myself. Even my teachers said they were dissapointed in me. I'm not saying for sympathy, I want to take action to better my life and seeking guidance is my first step. I don't know what my options are or where to turn to but I really can't live my life like this anymore. any suggestions are more than welcome.
    Thank you for your time reading this
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    Take a BTEC
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    For starters congratulations for acknowledging you have a problem, you're on the right path already.
    I'm sure other TSR members are more qualified to help you than me but my 2 pence would be, stop beating yourself up. You're only 19 and have a lifetime of opportunity ahead of you. Good luck.
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    Get a job you're comfortable with, save money and find a hobby you can enjoy with that money. Don't get yourself down over trivial things like qualifications when they don't mean anything in the long run of things.
    Focus on taking advantage of the easy work and enjoy your life instead of being depressed about what could have been. Forget what your parents and others think because it's your life, not theirs.
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    (Original post by Shado123)
    Take a BTEC
    I did after my two failed attempts at alevels, since that was the only option left for me. But like I said I crumbled and flunked the last month even though I only had a couple of pieces left to work on. In consequence I got nothing from it. Only a 60 credit merit in media.
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    (Original post by Luneth)
    Get a job you're comfortable with, save money and find a hobby you can enjoy with that money. Don't get yourself down over trivial things like qualifications when they don't mean anything in the long run of things.
    Focus on taking advantage of the easy work and enjoy your life instead of being depressed about what could have been. Forget what your parents and others think because it's your life, not theirs.
    That's the thing I'm struggling to enjoy my life when I hate it. I want to change my life around but don't know how to go about it. I currently work in m&s, there's no one there that is my age so socially wise the job isn't that great. For the most part as soon as I go there my brain switches off, I do mindless work then come home and repeat. It's not the life for me at all. Doing a job I enjoy would require qualifications. I tried to look for a job outside of retail because retail Is soul draining but there really isn't much
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    (Original post by Chelle1996)
    That's the thing I'm struggling to enjoy my life when I hate it. I want to change my life around but don't know how to go about it. I currently work in m&s, there's no one there that is my age so socially wise the job isn't that great. For the most part as soon as I go there my brain switches off, I do mindless work then come home and repeat. It's not the life for me at all. Doing a job I enjoy would require qualifications. I tried to look for a job outside of retail because retail Is soul draining but there really isn't much
    Well you mentioned Youtube in your OP, what's stopping you from trying that in your free time?
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    (Original post by Luneth)
    Well you mentioned Youtube in your OP, what's stopping you from trying that in your free time?
    I wouldn't know what to do. I don't really want to be another makeup guru though I could easily do it. I enjoy singing but I'm no Beyoncé and I'm afraid of putting myself out there when I'm not that great and know there's better people. Keeping in mind friends and family
    Members would see it . Guess I just lack confidence too much?
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    (Original post by Chelle1996)
    I wouldn't know what to do. I don't really want to be another makeup guru though I could easily do it. I enjoy singing but I'm no Beyoncé and I'm afraid of putting myself out there when I'm not that great and know there's better people. Keeping in mind friends and family
    Members would see it . Guess I just lack confidence too much?
    You can vlog about pretty much anything, you could also just rant on about things you enjoy/dislike, you'd be surprised about the variety of things people actually watch on Youtube. The most watched people tend to just have good social media skills, rather than fantastic editing or thought-provoking content.
    If you have a good ear for music you could give music production a try, you don't have to be a fantastic singer and it can be pretty fun (and rewarding) to learn an instrument or produce a track that you can claim as your own.
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    Access courses?
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    (Original post by Chelle1996)
    Hi,
    I'm 19 going on twenty. My biggest fear in life is not making anything of myself, but lately that's what I see my future becoming and it's scaring me. The worst part is being shadowed by my past failure. from secondary school I got into my boroughs best sixth form. My parents were thrilled as was I. From there I was studying 4 a levels. Everything was fine. Until suddenly i went from getting A's in my GCSEs to Ds and Us in my alevels. I didn't know where I was going wrong my confidence took a giant hit and no teachers helped me to improve. Infact if anything I got the impression they needed some people to fail to make the others look good. From there I lost motivation and had numerous problems during my academic years including losing a family member and having trouble with a student to the point where the police got involved. Unsurprisingly I wasn't let back and my mum was devasted. She was and still is dissapointed in me, and so am I for letting her and myself down. I then entered a new college, but again I had major issues at home and lost another family member. However I tried to strive on, during the last month of college I flunked so all two years of hard work went down the drain. I could have easily pushed on and got into a uni but if I can't commit to a levels how can I commit to a degree? I hate education and genuinely have no motivation for anything anymore. I feel like all talents I have are gone and now I just do a full time retail job. But what kills me
    Is seeing all my friends go off to uni thriving in their social life's and getting somewhere when I know I have so much potentional. I am not stupid. However I Struggle to apply myself to anything. But I realise what I could have been, a very happy girl with lots of friends meeting lots of people and getting good qualifications. Despite the fact I'm not dumb this education system basically has it so that if your not in the system you've practically failed life in the eyes of everyone. I thought of doing things like YouTube, travelling, taking up hobbies but everything I'm bad at or don't feel good enough in now. It kills me to know what I could have been and where I am now, left behind from all my friends. The worst thing is I don't feel like I have any options. I want to do animation(the art design part) or study psychology but there's no apprenticeships in this. To go to uni I'd have to beg my college to let me finish that last month so I can actually have a qualification but I'm too ashamed of myself. Even my teachers said they were dissapointed in me. I'm not saying for sympathy, I want to take action to better my life and seeking guidance is my first step. I don't know what my options are or where to turn to but I really can't live my life like this anymore. any suggestions are more than welcome.
    Thank you for your time reading this
    I think this sounds too much like a pity party and you have lost all perspective.

    Its just a small hiccup and far too dramatic to start saying you are haunted.

    Get some perspective you messed up a few exams and you failed to apply yourself. It seems the responsibility for that is yours and nobody else is to blame.

    You dont really say what you did to get yourself kicked out and flunk your exams. Clearly you believe you have the potential.

    You are only 19, so you just need a plan to consider what you want, to look at your options and then consider the best course of action for you to get yourself where you wish to go. If it were me I would.

    1. Sort out my mental health, decide who I was, what I wanted and understand past events. If you are going off the rails then decide why? Is it really the death of a relative or are you just using that to hang other issues on? If you ahve other issues, then see your GP and get some therapy/ counseling.

    2.Decide what it is you would really like to do either at university or as a career. You say animation or psychology. Do some research, see whats required. You can also see a careers adviser, talk to one on the phone or visit one locally.

    https://nationalcareersservice.direc...Contactus.aspx

    Psychology
    https://nationalcareersservice.direc...chologist.aspx
    https://www.prospects.ac.uk/careers-...ree/psychology

    Animator
    https://nationalcareersservice.direc.../animator.aspx

    https://www.prospects.ac.uk/job-profiles/animator

    3. Work out what qualifications you need and how to get there. There is a bit on education from the career profiles. They dont always require a degree.

    4. Work out your options as to where you can study to give you the qualifications you need to move on. That could include:

    Resit A levels, returning to college, doing an access course.
    Is it really such a big deal to go and see your tutors and asking them if you can finish your course? You need to start growing up and making some adult decisions thats best for you. If you cnat do it then go and see an advisor at the SU who can ask on your behalf. Seems silly to throw awat 2 years work if thats whats standing in the way of you getting onto the course you want.

    5. You may need to work out financing. You claim how bright you are and how much potential you have. If this is so, then you need to show it. That means knuckling down and taking the exams needed. You claim to hate education, but tbh lots of people dont like hard work or the stress associated, but they get on with it. If tiy wnat to do these things you say you are capable of then its up to you to get off your backside and apply yourself. Nobody else is interested, so stop feeling sorry for yourself and start dealing with things.

    6. When you know what you wnat to do and where , plus you have arranged everything so the next phase is possible, then I think you need to speak to your parents and get them onbiard that you have had a big think, taken advice and you have a clear plan how to turn things around.

    Then its just a case of going it. Two years will pass quickly. You will work hard, get good results to show everyone that you can achieve and then you will go off to Uni or wherever just like everyone else. A mere two years behind, which considering you are going to libe till 80, isnt a whole lot.

    You only start to fail when you give up.

    You have your whole life in front of you. Look forward and decide what you want to do and how you will achieve it. You havent lost your legs, you dont have cancer, you just had some small setbacks. Everyone has them. Good luck
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    Try looking into BTEC courses, apparently they are much more fun and enjoyable than A-levels.
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    Chelle1996, it sounds like you've been through a lot in these past few years. I'm glad you've posted this and really glad that you want to take action to better your life now and haven't given up. I think it's also pretty admirable that you kept trying for most of those years to press on despite struggling with it. I lost a family member too while I was doing my A-levels and it really is hard to keep afloat with work and trying to cope with the bereavement at the same time. If I had lost another, I probably would have flunked too.

    Anyway I hear you on dropping from great grades at GCSE to failing or barely passing at A-level; A-levels are hard and it's really a huge jump between the assessment style at GCSE and that at A-level. Thankfully though, A-levels aren't the be-all and end-all and you do have more options still open to you.

    Here are some of the ones I can think of:

    1) If you feel like you might still be able to tackle A-levels with a bit of extra time and better circumstances, you could book the exams at an examination centre as an external candidate and study by yourself or with the help of tutors up until then (I wouldn't really recommend this as you are probably sick of A-levels by now, but I don't know the full situation so perhaps it is still something to consider.)

    2) You could take an alternative qualification at college, like a BTEC -- some universities will accept these in place of A-levels. You will have to do more research into this if you are interested but I know that there are art/computing/health&social care BTECs out there which could be quite relevant to what you'd like to do in the future.

    3) You could do a course with the Open University. Not only do you not need A-levels to do so, but you can do it from home, the tuition fees are substantially lower than those from traditional universities, and you can take the course part-time if you want to keep working to fund it. I've had a quick look through the courses they offer and they have both BSc Psychology and various computing and design courses. This could be a pathway to either a related career or further study at a physical university.

    Most importantly, look after yourself! It sounds like your confidence has, understandably, taken a huge hit from this, but ultimately, A-levels measure only a small part of our ability. It's hugely disheartening when it turns out that they measure your weak areas, but that doesn't in any way mean that you don't have strengths. I'd hugely encourage you to do thinks like trying new hobbies, travelling and YouTube if those are things that appeal to you. If it helps, I've watched videos over time by a few popular YouTubers who admitted that they completely flunked their A-levels, and it was really difficult, but did not stop them from progressing in life. I am really confident that, as long as you keep trying as you have been, you will eventually find something that you're great at and love doing. Are there any local hobby groups/classes for adults you could try to see if you can meet others who are not at university?

    It sounds like you feel (quite understandably) really down about it all -- do you think it could perhaps benefit you to talk to a counsellor to help you to work through the situation and how it has impacted your confidence and wellbeing, if you can access one?
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    (Original post by Chelle1996)
    That's the thing I'm struggling to enjoy my life when I hate it. I want to change my life around but don't know how to go about it. I currently work in m&s, there's no one there that is my age so socially wise the job isn't that great. For the most part as soon as I go there my brain switches off, I do mindless work then come home and repeat. It's not the life for me at all. Doing a job I enjoy would require qualifications. I tried to look for a job outside of retail because retail Is soul draining but there really isn't much
    Honestly they are just exams. Bit of application and just about anyone cna do them. You seem to have lost confidence so you undermine yourself. Thats why you need some determination and a bit of courage. Perhaps you have low self esteem and thats where some of the therapy would help.

    You might also want to consider doing some voluntary work or getting some shadowing experience in whatever area you are interested in. Ideally you would find a mentor. That way you could gain confidence and also inspire yourself. In turn that helps because working at M&S will seem less dull if you are saving the money to put towards a fighting fun for your escape plan, which offers hope.

    That will make sense and make you feel less fatalistic and have more about your future. You have to look after and fight for you.
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    (Original post by 999tigger)
    Honestly they are just exams. Bit of application and just about anyone cna do them.
    With all due respect, I disagree ... although it does sound like the OP has low confidence/self-esteem and could benefit from therapy, and the suggestions of volunteering/shadowing are great ones.

    Different people have different ways of thinking and A-level exams only ever tend to measure one way. They expect everyone to think in a very similar way and (in certain subjects at least) look for very specific answers even when other answers are also valid and the question doesn't give much guidance as to what, exactly, the examiner wants.

    Some people pass A-level exams effortlessly; others get there through hard-work; others work hard but still struggle greatly because either the subjects, and/or the teaching style, and/or the examination style are just not for them. They tend to be the quiet ones, but they are definitely there (including a large proportion of my classmates at school). I myself passed, but not brilliantly, and everyone around me -- teachers, parents, classmates -- would tell you that I really worked hard.

    Sorry for the vent, I just wanted to point out that it's not as simple as that for everyone, and also that it's not hopeless for the many students who don't do so well at A-levels.
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    (Original post by zabveniye)
    With all due respect, I disagree ... although it does sound like the OP has low confidence/self-esteem and could benefit from therapy, and the suggestions of volunteering/shadowing are great ones.

    Different people have different ways of thinking and A-level exams only ever tend to measure one way. They expect everyone to think in a very similar way and (in certain subjects at least) look for very specific answers even when other answers are also valid and the question doesn't give much guidance as to what, exactly, the examiner wants.

    Some people pass A-level exams effortlessly; others get there through hard-work; others work hard but still struggle greatly because either the subjects, and/or the teaching style, and/or the examination style are just not for them. They tend to be the quiet ones, but they are definitely there (including a large proportion of my classmates at school). I myself passed, but not brilliantly, and everyone around me -- teachers, parents, classmates -- would tell you that I really worked hard.

    Sorry for the vent, I just wanted to point out that it's not as simple as that for everyone, and also that it's not hopeless for the many students who don't do so well at A-levels.
    It doesnt have to be A levels, there are other types. The OP claims to have the ability just not the inclination.

    In my experience are just as much if not moreso about application on unerstanding what is needed and then giving them what they want. There are plenty of revision books that provide model answers plus online resources that give you more information than ever showing you how they score.

    The OP claims to have potential, but by her own admission has not applied herself. The reason she hasnt go anywhere seems to be much more down to her own actions rather than academic limitations.

    I dont think many people pass them effortlessly, they just get smart and know hwo the system works. I never said it was hopeless for people who didnt do A levels , thats just come from you. The OP claims to have ability, its up to her to find the most efficient way to realising it in a way that helps her get to where she wants to go.

    Disagree all you want with me.
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    (Original post by 999tigger)
    It doesnt have to be A levels, there are other types. The OP claims to have the ability just not the inclination.

    In my experience are just as much if not moreso about application on unerstanding what is needed and then giving them what they want. There are plenty of revision books that provide model answers plus online resources that give you more information than ever showing you how they score.

    The OP claims to have potential, but by her own admission has not applied herself. The reason she hasnt go anywhere seems to be much more down to her own actions rather than academic limitations.

    I dont think many people pass them effortlessly, they just get smart and know hwo the system works. I never said it was hopeless for people who didnt do A levels , thats just come from you. The OP claims to have ability, its up to her to find the most efficient way to realising it in a way that helps her get to where she wants to go.

    Disagree all you want with me.
    Hmm, I understood the post a little differently -- I thought that OP meant that she was doing her best to apply herself but struggling academically at first, but lost motivation as she just couldn't achieve the high grades she was achieving before, causing her confidence to drop. You may be right though.

    That's true, you didn't say that about it being hopeless; apologies for the miswording. I should have written that in a separate post.

    Thank you for the permission to disagree I don't want to pick a forum-fight or anything, just to make sure that we're all understanding the OP properly and so giving the most suitable advice we can.

    As I understood it, OP's problem is not only that she is struggling to apply herself now, but that her difficulties in applying herself stem from other difficulties which were there before and might still make exams more difficult even if she were to fully apply herself again.
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    (Original post by 999tigger)
    I think this sounds too much like a pity party and you have lost all perspective.

    Its just a small hiccup and far too dramatic to start saying you are haunted.

    Get some perspective you messed up a few exams and you failed to apply yourself. It seems the responsibility for that is yours and nobody else is to blame.

    You dont really say what you did to get yourself kicked out and flunk your exams. Clearly you believe you have the potential.

    You are only 19, so you just need a plan to consider what you want, to look at your options and then consider the best course of action for you to get yourself where you wish to go. If it were me I would.

    1. Sort out my mental health, decide who I was, what I wanted and understand past events. If you are going off the rails then decide why? Is it really the death of a relative or are you just using that to hang other issues on? If you ahve other issues, then see your GP and get some therapy/ counseling.

    2.Decide what it is you would really like to do either at university or as a career. You say animation or psychology. Do some research, see whats required. You can also see a careers adviser, talk to one on the phone or visit one locally.

    https://nationalcareersservice.direc...Contactus.aspx

    Psychology
    https://nationalcareersservice.direc...chologist.aspx
    https://www.prospects.ac.uk/careers-...ree/psychology

    Animator
    https://nationalcareersservice.direc.../animator.aspx

    https://www.prospects.ac.uk/job-profiles/animator

    3. Work out what qualifications you need and how to get there. There is a bit on education from the career profiles. They dont always require a degree.

    4. Work out your options as to where you can study to give you the qualifications you need to move on. That could include:

    Resit A levels, returning to college, doing an access course.
    Is it really such a big deal to go and see your tutors and asking them if you can finish your course? You need to start growing up and making some adult decisions thats best for you. If you cnat do it then go and see an advisor at the SU who can ask on your behalf. Seems silly to throw awat 2 years work if thats whats standing in the way of you getting onto the course you want.

    5. You may need to work out financing. You claim how bright you are and how much potential you have. If this is so, then you need to show it. That means knuckling down and taking the exams needed. You claim to hate education, but tbh lots of people dont like hard work or the stress associated, but they get on with it. If tiy wnat to do these things you say you are capable of then its up to you to get off your backside and apply yourself. Nobody else is interested, so stop feeling sorry for yourself and start dealing with things.

    6. When you know what you wnat to do and where , plus you have arranged everything so the next phase is possible, then I think you need to speak to your parents and get them onbiard that you have had a big think, taken advice and you have a clear plan how to turn things around.

    Then its just a case of going it. Two years will pass quickly. You will work hard, get good results to show everyone that you can achieve and then you will go off to Uni or wherever just like everyone else. A mere two years behind, which considering you are going to libe till 80, isnt a whole lot.

    You only start to fail when you give up.

    You have your whole life in front of you. Look forward and decide what you want to do and how you will achieve it. You havent lost your legs, you dont have cancer, you just had some small setbacks. Everyone has them. Good luck
    that was what I was trying to avoid. My post is no pity party, I understand and take full responsibility for where I am today. That's why I'm seeking help here because I'm not sure where to turn and where to start. I have infact looked at access courses and debating whether to take one in art and design. The only trouble with that would be money and my background of failed attempts which I presume no uni will look lightly upon. I ahundred percent agree with you about my mental state! Sometimes I even questioned whether I was using all the things going on around me as an excuse to my lack of passion. But I think truth was I just got so invested in all the bad things I couldn't concentrate. I lost two relatives and my family was breaking apart. I did take counselling at college but stopped going as all I was doing was talking about my problems but no solving came from it. Every week I felt like I went back with a new problem to address. I hated how weak and how much of like you said a pity party I sounded like so I just tried to cope which believe me didn't work. When I talk to my parents about what I'm talking to you about now they don't understand or just don't take me seriously. In regards to talking to my college I feel like the teachers have given up on me, but if worse comes to worse maybe I will. However I would really like to start afresh and work hard. Yes I do believe I have the potentional. I managed to get into a great sixth form and even got a calling from a great university for a creative writing degree, though I didn't follow through with it because i wasn't looking for a career in that path, stupid I know. When I said I hate education I didn't mean as in I'm just lazy I mean as In I never liked or had passion for it so it become tedious to study. I appreciate all the links you have given me and will check them out! Thank you for your reply. I don't know if I'm in the right mindset to not fail again but I'm defiantly better than I was before and willing to attempt education again.
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    (Original post by zabveniye)
    Hmm, I understood the post a little differently -- I thought that OP meant that she was doing her best to apply herself but struggling academically at first, but lost motivation as she just couldn't achieve the high grades she was achieving before, causing her confidence to drop. You may be right though.

    That's true, you didn't say that about it being hopeless; apologies for the miswording. I should have written that in a separate post.

    Thank you for the permission to disagree I don't want to pick a forum-fight or anything, just to make sure that we're all understanding the OP properly and so giving the most suitable advice we can.

    As I understood it, OP's problem is not only that she is struggling to apply herself now, but that her difficulties in applying herself stem from other difficulties which were there before and might still make exams more difficult even if she were to fully apply herself again.
    Not my reading of it. If you have the potential and claim to have it (she has some proof), then you have to show other peoplle you have it plus prove to yourself you can do that. Self belief. She messed up her A levels for x reason and then she didnt finish her course with 1 month to go for another reason. Some of that is down to self management.

    If the OP is having difficulties applying herself then whose problem is that and who will get them out of it? Think you will find its the OP. Bit more self belief and application and she cna soon get back on track. Its not the catastrophe she currently see it as. If the OP genuinely has the potential, then it seem dull to give in and fail to realise it.
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    I have to say I agree with the others that have called this out as a pity party.

    Everything from the fourth line onwards was an excuse or put the blame on someone else for your failures.

    Dust yourself off, pick yourself up and get on with it. People have much worse stories than you and manage it without so much self pity.
 
 
 
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