livydavey03
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I've just finished year 12 which means I'm going into year 13 in September, and I seriously don't want to go back. I've HATED A-levels and sixth form since the very start, to the point that the thought of going to school or even just sitting down to do the work can make me either burst into tears or give me really bad anxiety. And then year 12 has been made even more stressful by the fact that I've had to study at home as well. I can just feel my mental health getting worse and worse; I'm so tired constantly, I feel upset and fed up most days, I'm starting to get more irritated and annoyed at friends and family even when they haven't done anything wrong, I don't enjoy the things that I love (like theatre and video games) as much as I used to, and I can tell that I'm just not being myself. I can feel my friendships with people that I've known for years starting to fall apart, mainly because I never feel like talking to or messaging anyone - some break times at school, I just sit in the library and carry on doing work instead of seeing my friends and having a break. I don't know if I can cope with another 9 months of the same thing, which will just be made even more stressful by university interviews and uncertainty around what will happen because of Covid-19.

I've been a high-achieving and hard-working student the entire time I've been at school. I'm always getting straight 7s, 8s and 9s, and my predicted grades for A-levels are A*/A*/A. My teachers always expect so highly of me, which puts me under so much pressure and, when I don't do as good as I could've done, I feel so ashamed and annoyed at myself. In geography last year, I did a 20 marker and only got 13 when I'm normally getting 17/18 - 13 isn't a bad mark, but my teacher made me feel guilty about it (I could just tell by the tone of her voice that she was disappointed with me) and I was panicking about that one question for an entire week until we did another one and I did slightly better. I know I should be working for myself and I shouldn't care about what other people think, but I guess I'm just one of those people that does. My performance academically has gotten so much worse as time has gone on, and I just feel like this is going to continue throughout year 13 so I won't get the grades that I am apparently "capable" of getting. I used to enjoy the three subjects that I'm taking (geography, product design and photography), but A-levels have completely drained my passion for them and I don't find them interesting at all. I'm just so bored and completely unmotivated to do any of the work, which I think is only being made worse by the fact that I've been at the exact same school since I was 11 (I'm now 17). In short, school has definitely NOT been "the best years of my life" and I'm desperate to get away and do something else.

I have briefly considered dropping out and going to college instead, but I know that will put me in a much worse situation - I want to go to university, most of which are only accepting A-levels. My desired degree is a BA in Technical Theatre Production (obviously very different to the subjects that I'm doing at the minute), and I know that doing that will be a dream come true. I just don't know how much more of sixth form I can take, I can't even motivate myself to work hard with the thought of studying at university like most other people can. My degree doesn't even ask for very high grades (like BBC or CCC depending on which university it is), but I still feel like I need to meet my predicted grades otherwise I'll have disappointed someone.

I'm one of those people that revised as much as she can, yet still doesn't feel like she's doing enough and feels guilty when she isn't revising. Even when my mum basically forces me to take a break, I don't feel 'refreshed' or ready to do more work like you're supposed to feel. School is always on my mind and I can't seem to get rid of it, even when I'm in bed or in the shower. I would talk to my school about how I'm feeling, but they're terrible at helping with mental health-related issues so I think it would just make me feel worse than before. I have no confidence for my exams and don't feel like I can get my predicted grades, even when my good practice exam questions and high coursework marks show otherwise.

None of that probably makes any sense, but does anyone have any advice on how I can push myself through year 13 and not let my mental health and stress levels get even worse? Thank you
Last edited by livydavey03; 1 month ago
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Ali-liyyah
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Hey! I definitely empathize with you. I’d say that you need to have a specific time every day that’s just dedicated to you and your wellbeing. During this time, you should try to just zone out from the other things and take away all distractions (including your phone). You can spend your me-time having a nap or meditating or just reading a book for fun.

I’m terms of school, just try your very best. I know it sounds cliche but if you’re seriously doing all you possibly can with your work and trying you utmost best, then that’s all you can do, and you should be really proud of yourself. Also, in terms of revising, you could try having a revision timetable. When making it, schedule specific times when you have to have a break. If you don’t have breaks between revision and rest, you’re going to overwork yourself, and in most cases you end up forgetting more than you learn.

In terms of friendships and family relationships, try to message them, even if it’s just to say hi. Also, maybe talk to them about your mental health struggles, if you’re close to your friends, but definitely let your family know how you’re feeling. It may not seem like it, but I’m sure they would be supportive if you let them know how your feeling. Also, in terms of friends, don’t be afraid to let them go and make new ones, if they’re not supportive and aren’t treating you fairly. But I’d say, for Year 13, friends shouldn’t be your main priority, and you should try to focus more on yourself, schoolwork and preparing for university.

Sorry that was REALLY long. Hopefully this was helpful x
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Gerrard88
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Honestly, your not alone. I’m in the exact same position as you atm. I got 7s, 8s and 9s in my GCSEs and I’m expected As in my alevel. Year 12 has been ****, and I’m not looking forward to year 13 at all. I’ve been working hard since year 12. Even harder since lockdown started, doing 4+hours a day. All this effort, and I’m still failing miserably. I’m doing maths, psychology and physics, and the only subject I like is maths and the other two I picked was because physics will help with uni applications and psychology was there to fill in because we need to do 3 subjects at least. I thought I enjoyed maths, but I’m starting to hate it because of how hard it is and it’s a mental battle to sit down and study at times.

Not only that, but I have also fallen out with my all of my friends near the beginning of year 12. I fell out with them for personal reasons, so I decided to cut them of completely and it’s kind of **** not having friends.

My mental health is also it **** atm. I’m not that close to my family, so don’t have anyone to talk to tbh.

Heres what I’ve been doing to cope, or trying to cope at least haha. The fact that I’ve fallen out with my friends, I’ve now got more time as I don’t really go out much, so I’m studying more because I really really don’t want to fail. I keep telling myself that I’ve only 4 years of studying left, year 13 and 3 years at Uni, after that, all of the struggle that I’m going through will hopefully pay off. So keep reminding yourself that it will work out and this is just a bump in the road.

With school work, I was doing 4 hours a day ( school set 3 lessons a day and then I did an extra hour) from Monday to Saturday and giving myself Sunday off. I literally had to drag myself out of bed some days because I hate alevel so much. What helped me was making a timetable, spreading my work evenly throughout the day, and giving myself breaks. I did my work in 1 hour sessions, where I did work for 25 mins, then a 10 min break and then another 25 mins. Although most days the session would be longer than an hour because it takes time for me to soak up the work, but I still followed that pattern, given myself a 10 min break after 25 mins of work. My timetable was 9am- 1st lesson, 12pm- 2nd lesson , 4pm- 3rd lesson and 7:30pm-extra one hour. Keeping up with that schedule since March has been so difficult, but I kept telling myself that I need to do it so I don’t fail, but here I am in the summer holidays still failing. So now during the summer, I’m going to do two sessions of 30 mins from Monday to Friday. Mentally, I don’t think I can make myself do anymore than that without my brain exploding.

Since lockdown started, I couldn’t play football anymore, so that had affected me mentally. I felt like **** not doing any exercise and staying home all day. My football started this week and I’m back to training, and I already feel much better. Football helps take my mind away from all the negative things I’m my life. What I would say is do what you enjoy to keep your mind occupied. It seriously helps.

With the having no friends may have been a blessing in disguise. I’d rather not have any friends than have *****y fake ones. When lockdowns over, I’m going to start doing more sports and hopefully will make friends while doing it.

All in all, I’ve realised when I’m doing nothing and just laying in bed watching movies makes me depressed, so just try to keep your mind occupied by doing things you enjoy. Also, I limit myself to 30 mins of social media a day, as I’ve realised that going on social media seriously damages my mental health. Before lockdown, I’d spend like 2 hours a day, and i can’t imagine how long I’d spend during lockdown when I’m at home all day. It was hard not going on social media, but how i did it was by logging out of like sc and insta etc. After that, I found my social media time creeping up, so now I just uninstall the apps. It really helps.

Don’t worry I’m sure things will get better for the both of us
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livydavey03
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(Original post by Ali-liyyah)
Hey! I definitely empathize with you. I’d say that you need to have a specific time every day that’s just dedicated to you and your wellbeing. During this time, you should try to just zone out from the other things and take away all distractions (including your phone). You can spend your me-time having a nap or meditating or just reading a book for fun.

I’m terms of school, just try your very best. I know it sounds cliche but if you’re seriously doing all you possibly can with your work and trying you utmost best, then that’s all you can do, and you should be really proud of yourself. Also, in terms of revising, you could try having a revision timetable. When making it, schedule specific times when you have to have a break. If you don’t have breaks between revision and rest, you’re going to overwork yourself, and in most cases you end up forgetting more than you learn.

In terms of friendships and family relationships, try to message them, even if it’s just to say hi. Also, maybe talk to them about your mental health struggles, if you’re close to your friends, but definitely let your family know how you’re feeling. It may not seem like it, but I’m sure they would be supportive if you let them know how your feeling. Also, in terms of friends, don’t be afraid to let them go and make new ones, if they’re not supportive and aren’t treating you fairly. But I’d say, for Year 13, friends shouldn’t be your main priority, and you should try to focus more on yourself, schoolwork and preparing for university.

Sorry that was REALLY long. Hopefully this was helpful x
Thank you so much for this! I'm absolutely terrible at giving myself me-time (I end up spending most of my breaks on my phone which I don't even really enjoy, I guess it's just my first instinct), so I will definitely make sure to do that much more and hopefully it should help. At GCSE I was burnt out by the start of exams in May so you'd think I would've learnt my lesson 😂 Seriously though this was super helpful and has made me feel a lot more confident, thank you x
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livydavey03
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(Original post by Gerrard88)
Honestly, your not alone. I’m in the exact same position as you atm. I got 7s, 8s and 9s in my GCSEs and I’m expected As in my alevel. Year 12 has been ****, and I’m not looking forward to year 13 at all. I’ve been working hard since year 12. Even harder since lockdown started, doing 4+hours a day. All this effort, and I’m still failing miserably. I’m doing maths, psychology and physics, and the only subject I like is maths and the other two I picked was because physics will help with uni applications and psychology was there to fill in because we need to do 3 subjects at least. I thought I enjoyed maths, but I’m starting to hate it because of how hard it is and it’s a mental battle to sit down and study at times.

Not only that, but I have also fallen out with my all of my friends near the beginning of year 12. I fell out with them for personal reasons, so I decided to cut them of completely and it’s kind of **** not having friends.

My mental health is also it **** atm. I’m not that close to my family, so don’t have anyone to talk to tbh.

Heres what I’ve been doing to cope, or trying to cope at least haha. The fact that I’ve fallen out with my friends, I’ve now got more time as I don’t really go out much, so I’m studying more because I really really don’t want to fail. I keep telling myself that I’ve only 4 years of studying left, year 13 and 3 years at Uni, after that, all of the struggle that I’m going through will hopefully pay off. So keep reminding yourself that it will work out and this is just a bump in the road.

With school work, I was doing 4 hours a day ( school set 3 lessons a day and then I did an extra hour) from Monday to Saturday and giving myself Sunday off. I literally had to drag myself out of bed some days because I hate alevel so much. What helped me was making a timetable, spreading my work evenly throughout the day, and giving myself breaks. I did my work in 1 hour sessions, where I did work for 25 mins, then a 10 min break and then another 25 mins. Although most days the session would be longer than an hour because it takes time for me to soak up the work, but I still followed that pattern, given myself a 10 min break after 25 mins of work. My timetable was 9am- 1st lesson, 12pm- 2nd lesson , 4pm- 3rd lesson and 7:30pm-extra one hour. Keeping up with that schedule since March has been so difficult, but I kept telling myself that I need to do it so I don’t fail, but here I am in the summer holidays still failing. So now during the summer, I’m going to do two sessions of 30 mins from Monday to Friday. Mentally, I don’t think I can make myself do anymore than that without my brain exploding.

Since lockdown started, I couldn’t play football anymore, so that had affected me mentally. I felt like **** not doing any exercise and staying home all day. My football started this week and I’m back to training, and I already feel much better. Football helps take my mind away from all the negative things I’m my life. What I would say is do what you enjoy to keep your mind occupied. It seriously helps.

With the having no friends may have been a blessing in disguise. I’d rather not have any friends than have *****y fake ones. When lockdowns over, I’m going to start doing more sports and hopefully will make friends while doing it.

All in all, I’ve realised when I’m doing nothing and just laying in bed watching movies makes me depressed, so just try to keep your mind occupied by doing things you enjoy. Also, I limit myself to 30 mins of social media a day, as I’ve realised that going on social media seriously damages my mental health. Before lockdown, I’d spend like 2 hours a day, and i can’t imagine how long I’d spend during lockdown when I’m at home all day. It was hard not going on social media, but how i did it was by logging out of like sc and insta etc. After that, I found my social media time creeping up, so now I just uninstall the apps. It really helps.

Don’t worry I’m sure things will get better for the both of us
Aww I'm so sorry to hear that you've been going through so much as well - I hope you're doing okay at the moment and that things get better for you soon. Thank you so much for your advice too! The thing you mentioned about only studying in short 25-30 minute slots is something that I will definitely be trying. I've made a timetable for this summer holiday but with at least 1 hour sessions before a break, and I've constantly found it hard to stay concentrated for that long so I think adding more breaks in will really help. The limiting my time on social media thing as well will also be something that I will try; I will sit on Instagram or Twitter for ages and find it so hard to drag myself away from it. And even then, I feel like going on it such a waste of time because I'm not doing stuff that I actually really enjoy like playing video games. I wanted to go and volunteer at my local theatre at weekends to do something different and keep my mind occupied and away from work, but obviously it couldn't happen because of Covid which I'm so disappointed about. Hopefully soon I guess!

Like you said, I'm sure we'll both get through this together! Thank you again for your advice, it's really helpful Wishing you all the best for year 13, I'm sure you will but I hope you're happy with your results when it comes to it!
Last edited by livydavey03; 1 month ago
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