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High school highly overrated?

High school is often portrayed as being "the best time of a person's life". I beg to differ. High school is but a exceedingly small part of person's life. Does anyone feel like high school made out to be better than it actually is?

by Anonymousreply 4806/18/2014

Absolutely agree. I neither hated nor loved it. Just tried to maximize the opportunities it afforded and get on with things.

by Anonymousreply 101/14/2013

I grew up with the John Hughes movie depiction of high school, which didn't exactly glorify high school but certainly made it a hell of a lot more interesting than it actually was. I never smoked pot and danced around the library during detention. I just remember being really bored most of the time, it was in Brooklyn and all we wanted to do was go into Manhattan and get into trouble. I got sent to the principle's office once for saying I thought religion was stupid in class.

by Anonymousreply 201/14/2013

[quote] I got sent to the principle's office once for saying I thought religion was stupid in class.

Shame. They'd have done better to give you more time in English.

by Anonymousreply 301/14/2013

Very few people think of high school as the best time of their lives, and quite a lot think of it as the worst.

I thought the cliche was that college is the best time of your life. I mean, you're partially out from under your parents' thumbs, and you get to drink.

by Anonymousreply 401/15/2013

The principal is your P-A-L.

by Anonymousreply 501/15/2013

I love r5

by Anonymousreply 601/15/2013

I agree with R4. College was the best time of my life. High school had its ups and downs. My freshman year was fun. Sophomore year first half was ok, second half sucked. Junior year kind of sucked for the most part. My senior year I started to realize not to take it all so seriously and it was better than the prior two years. College was fun the whole time.

by Anonymousreply 701/15/2013

I liked graduating from college, getting a job, my first apartment, and a car. I liked being on my own and felt truly free for the first time -- in those years, work only wanted your work, it didn't demand your whole soul.

There are no pre-fabricated cultural expectations laid on those early years. No one then ever made films about how it is the best time of your life. It was free to be as it was, and it was a free and happy time for me.

by Anonymousreply 801/15/2013

[quote]I grew up with the John Hughes movie depiction of high school,

Weird. I was about to say the same thing.

It didn't seem like culturally people thought of it as "the best time of their life." It seemed pretty much understood that it was something to suffer through until it was over, which is how I thought of it. At the very least, people understood it was ostensibly preparing you for college and adult life.

And it was kind of tacitly understood, at least among my crowd, that those having a good time--the cheerleaders and football players etc--were at a high point, which was actually kind of SAD.

The culture's youth and high school fetish came later imho, and has something to do with the culture of social media, helicopter parenting, and reality tv. It almost seems like every high school kid is now a golden quasi-celebrity, things like prom are a huge industry, and yeah, that time is supposed to be 'the best in your life.'

by Anonymousreply 901/15/2013

It's the best time of a STRAIGHT person's life. It only goes downhill for them after high school. Just take a look at your hetero classmates on Facebook. Fat, bald & pregnant...all of them.

For gays, life doesn't begin until after H.S.

by Anonymousreply 1001/15/2013

High school was four years of hell for me. Students were physically and verbally abusive to me every day for years.

I flipped when the teachers and principals joined in the game, and I tried to kill myself. Luckily my family helped me through that and I managed to graduate.

Agree with R10. Not sure if it's gotten any better, but at least when I graduated over a decade ago, life didn't start for me until college.

by Anonymousreply 1101/15/2013

High School was often the worst time of many LGBTs persons life. College was the better.

by Anonymousreply 1201/15/2013

People who say high school was the best time of their life makes me sad. It's like they peaked at 17 and never accomplished anything since then. For myself, whatever present I am in is the best time of my life.

by Anonymousreply 1301/15/2013

Many of those "High School Cool" movies are made by the people who had as bad a time as we did, but still can't face the truth of this.

by Anonymousreply 1401/15/2013

[quote]High school is often portrayed as being "the best time of a person's life".

I have NEVER heard that.

by Anonymousreply 1501/15/2013

I once heard that nobody decent had a good time in High School. With a few exceptions, it holds for me.

by Anonymousreply 1601/15/2013

When I was a freshman in high school, I couldn't understand why my mom used to tell me she would never want to go back to her high school years. By the middle of my junior year, I began to understand that statement more. By my senior year, I completely understood what she meant.

by Anonymousreply 1701/15/2013

When I went to a small private school I thought it would be better in a big public school. It was worse

by Anonymousreply 1801/15/2013

HS was just...boring. I grew up in NJ. We couldn't even drive until we were 17, the oldest age in the country. So most of us were still being chaperoned by our parents until senior year. Made it kind of hard to do anything particularly fun. And even then it was just chain restaurants, the movies, and people's houses.

by Anonymousreply 1901/15/2013

Yes always. Great fun, but not the end all and be all. It's what you go on from to better things.

by Anonymousreply 2001/15/2013

[quote]When I went to a small private school I thought it would be better in a big public school. It was worse


by Anonymousreply 2101/15/2013

I hated high school

by Anonymousreply 2201/15/2013

It was the time of my life when I was most unhappy. But that was at least as much the conditions at home with my family as it was at school.

by Anonymousreply 2301/15/2013

I went to both a private Catholic school and public school, so I got both experiences. The private school was smaller by about a third. Both had their issues. I felt like I had way more freedom at the public school. I had never skipped school in my life until I went to the public high school. Surprisingly, though, money and status seemed to matter more at the public school. It was very stratified along those lines. At the private school, different economic groups mixed a bit more.

by Anonymousreply 2401/15/2013

Some people think high school is supposed to be the best time of your life. Some people think college is supposed to be the best time of your life. It's really sad to think that people believe that; what are they going to do when high school or college is over? Wait to die? When the "best time of your life" is over, what's left?

I knew a girl who was very popular all through high school, valedictorian and all that. She had her little clique of friends and they were oh so happy and had so much fun together. And was OVER. Her friends went their separate ways for the most part; her charmed life had ended. Despite being valedictorian she only got an Associate degree from a community college and got a piddly job as a secretary. She was sharing an apartment with a friend from her beautiful school days; I went there and it was a bleak place, two not very happy women in a nondescript dwelling. She seemed postively lost. It was like her world had disappeared and she didn't know what to do. Later I heard she got married; she and her husband have no children. It always seemed to me that she always longed for those halcyon days of high school and after they were over everything went downhill from there.

by Anonymousreply 2501/15/2013

When I graduated high school in 1972 it was like being liberated from slavery or some concentration camp. College was generally a little better but am glad that is way behind me as well. Life began in 1980 when I started going to gay bars, after age 40 life got better, I moved away from the retarded hick town I grew up in and never looked back. The more time that separates me and high school the better.

by Anonymousreply 2601/16/2013

I ran into the high school prom king recently. He runs a bar now where all of the local high schoolers go to drink. He basically hangs out with 17 and 18 year olds even though he is MUCH older. I think he enjoys living vicariously through them.

He was scorchingly hot in high school - six pack, curly jet black hair, 6'3, square jaw. Teachers and students alike were in awe of him. He drove a Lexus SUV and people would fall over each other trying to get invited to his parties.

He's fat now, his face looks like a round dinner plate, and he's still stuck in the old neighborhood. He's chained to his HS girlfriend (who was the Queen Bee of the school) and she looks like a premature hag - smoking and bulimia have really aged her.

On the other hand, I went from being an ugly geek (glasses, braces, horrible clothes and hair, cystic acne) who weighed 110 lbs to an amateur bodybuilder (195 lbs) with a personal and professional life that is incredibly fulfilling. I rarely give high school a second thought. When I do think about HS it's only to reflect on how far I've come as a person, and how much richer my life is now.

by Anonymousreply 2701/17/2013

At a Catholic school graduation in Canada, over half of students made a statement in support of their school’s gay-straight alliance, by wearing rainbow socks.

Students at the Vanier Catholic Secondary School wore the socks at the ceremony to support the newly-formed alliance.

The school was subjected to controversy over several months as the policy of the church diocese policy which states that homosexuality as “intrinsically disordered”, and said homosexual acts were a “grave depravity”.

Following the Yukon Department of Education’s assertion that the school needed to adopt a more inclusive policy, and eventually the school did so, allowing the gay-straight alliance to be formed.

The newly formed group has around 30 members.

At the graduation ceremony, about 45 out of 81 students wore rainbow socks.

by Anonymousreply 2806/17/2014

There were only about 100 kids in my HS graduation class, and we all started kindergarten together. By the time we graduated, we knew each kid in the class. I felt relief to get away from all of that, but now look back on my school days with mostly fond memories. My 30th reunion is this year and I plan to go. I went to the 25th and surprisingly enjoyed it very much.

My 20s were the time of my life! I was free, living in NYC, ambitious and career-driven. Poor as anything, but never seemed to worry about money. It was easier to do without, plus my living expenses were much less back then. I guess I always knew I had a safety net with my parents, but never needed it.

My parents' generation though, lots of kids got married right after high school. This was in the 50s and 60s. Colleges used to have married housing for couples. Maybe this is when people thought high school was the best time in their life, they had to grow up quickly.

by Anonymousreply 2906/17/2014

[quote]Does anyone feel like high school made out to be better than it actually is?

OP, you're going to get a chorus of "nos" on this thread, seeing as most DLers were the kids endlessly picked on in high school for being "fags." However, for a certain group of straights -- the ones who don't go on to college and get married and/or pregnant young, after having been a football or cheerleading star back in HS -- high school certainly *is* the best part of their lives. I think this was more common decades ago when far fewer kids went to college, but you still see it around.

Btw one of my all-time favorite movies, "Dazed and Confused," is largely about this idea, viewed from various vantage points. Here's a quote from the film's lead character, a popular jock who nonetheless hates HS: "If I ever start referring to these as the best years of my life - remind me to kill myself."

by Anonymousreply 3006/17/2014

Best years of my life were my final 2 years of undergrad.

Bought my first car, moved off-campus into a nice apartment, just had a blast...

I had a full-time job while in grad school so it was not nearly as enjoyable.

by Anonymousreply 3106/17/2014

I didn't mind being a teenager but high school was just something to get through. I had no romantic notions about how it was supposed to be. I was obviously gay and I was picked on a bit, but I had a nice group of friends and for the most part people were nice to me.

When it ended I didn't miss it. I was ready to get on with college.

I remember how carefree those years were overall. The summers in particular. My parents didn't make me get a summer job so I had lots of freedom to just hang out.

It was the early 80s and I was really into the punk and New Wave thing. That also made me stick out in school, but it was an exciting time, discovering new bands and scouring the thrift stores for cool clothes.

by Anonymousreply 3206/17/2014

I think that's true only for kids who were popular in high school, and never went on to college.

by Anonymousreply 3306/17/2014

I think it's made out to be better and worse.

Popular culture presents high school as (1) the best time of person's life (as OP states), and/or (2) a horrible period that either is the start of an overall horrible life and is the reason for an adult's problems, or is something that is overcome and the person who overcame it has that fact at the forefront of their identity - thus they still talk about it.

I think there's a silent majority of people for whom high school was neither. It was mandatory by law and by parents, and it just existed. There was some good and some bad, but overall, just meh. It was a required job.

Yet, pop culture markets high school as the end all be all, either positively or negatively.

by Anonymousreply 3406/17/2014

I think it was probably in the post-war 1950s when popular culture, particularly TV and pop music, discovered The Teenager. Suddenly there were TV shows and movies and music all about being a teenager and all the innocent drama and romance that involved.

So of course it idealized and romanticized the idea of high school.

by Anonymousreply 3506/17/2014

[quote]Does anyone feel like high school made out to be better than it actually is?

No, at least not where I'm from. Everyone thinks that high school was a horrible experience. Doesn't matter if you were popular or not or just an average student, it was horrible for everyone. That's what we thought at the time and that's what we've thought since then.

by Anonymousreply 3606/17/2014

Some people have fond memories of high school. And I guess there are some people who consider it the highlight of their lives, especially if they were a part of the social elite, the "popular" kids. I actually did hear one popular girl I knew in high school say that those years were supposed to be the best years of her life (I don't know if they actually were). But it's pretty sad that some people look back at high school and consider it the best time of their lives. High school is over when you're about 18...and everything is downhill from there? That's pretty sad.

As for me, high school (well, actually ALL of school) was hell. I was a fish out of water. I grew up in a rural, backward area and my classmates were by and large dullards with no imagination or sensitivity or intelligence. I liked to READ; that was considered very weird.

I don't think high school is an especially great time for most people. It is overrated.

by Anonymousreply 3706/17/2014

[quote]High school is often portrayed as being "the best time of a person's life".

It is? By whom? I haven't heard that since I left high school, and I'm pretty sure it was just the guidance counselors and the prom kings and queens who actually believed that. My stoner buddies and I didn't exactly express our love for high school while we were smoking up before homeroom. I don't recall thinking "these are the best days of my life!" when I lunkhead football player would knock my books out of my hands in the hallway. While struggling with my sexuality and trying to fit in despite being a raging cockmonster in private, I don't recall musing "someday I'll look back on my current shame and self-loathing with rose-colored nostalgia".

Are you aware that not everyone has the same high school experiences?

Most people I know would say that statement applies to college more than high school, but if you just ask open endedly "what was the best time of your life" most people would probably cite their 20s, not their teenaged years.

Unless you're asking actual teenagers, which would be stupid.

[quote]Does anyone feel like high school made out to be better than it actually is?

Again, what perspective are we coming at this from? I'm 45 and haven't thought about high school in years. Very few people sugar-coat it these days, with so much awareness of bullying and teen suicide.

R4 had it right. I don't know anyone who's all "rah rah!" over their high school days. People like that are generally mocked and avoided in my social circles.

What are you basing this all on, OP? Can I ask how old you are and what kind of environment you live in?

by Anonymousreply 3806/17/2014

I hated high school. Even on Facebook I'm friends with people from elementary school, jr high, and college...but not a single person from high school.

by Anonymousreply 3906/17/2014

I've actually heard that too, but always from the jocks who peaked as the football hero in HS and the prom queens who peaked then too. Small Texas town, and so many of them married right out of high school and still live in that same stupid little town. Late 70's. I hated high school, so, no...wouldn't say they were awful but happily I didn't peak in my teens.

by Anonymousreply 4006/17/2014

People have been brainwashed by all those stupid movies that make high school seem like a fucking blast.

"Sixteen Candles" is a good example. The geeky sophomore girl is in love with "the most popular kid in the school" Jake Ryan. He's rich and handsome and has a hot cheerleader girlfriend. But all the most popular guy in the school wants is a girlfriend who will REALLY love him, who he can REALLY love.

After much idiocy, the poor little geeky sophomore girl, ignored by her parents (they forget her birthday) and resigned to never getting what she wants, she finds him waiting to whisk her away in his Porsche to a quiet place where a birthday cake all aglow with candles awaits. They kiss, sealing their love. What hooey! But movies like that made high school out to be a wacky, wonderful time. Even the repulsive geek gets some! He bangs the dead drunk cheerleader girlfriend, (Jake Ryan hands her over to him). Technically it's date rape, but when she comes to the next day she admits she "liked it." Yep, high school is the greatest...if you believe dopey movies. And a lot of people do!

by Anonymousreply 4106/18/2014

High school is a waste of time.

by Anonymousreply 4206/18/2014

I think it gets overstated as being the wort of times too. It's a small, not especially eventful part.

I was a geeky weirdo (and somewhat out) in high school yet kind of enjoyed it.

by Anonymousreply 4306/18/2014

I've not heard HS are the best years since I was in HS, and I didn't buy it then. High school had its ups and downs but my memory is mostly coloured by my lack of self-acceptance at the time. I denied my sexuality and genuinely hated myself until after high school, and then the penny dropped and the fun began. I started becoming the person I am after high school - I moved away and had a blast.

by Anonymousreply 4406/18/2014

I can honestly say I haven't given much thought to High School since graduating from it 37 (!) years ago. The best years of my life are now. Good job, a partner I love to pieces, travel, family, friends, good health, memories.

by Anonymousreply 4506/18/2014

I enjoyed what I was doing, and some people were nice, but mostly I was glad to depart from much of the company I felt forced to keep.

by Anonymousreply 4606/18/2014

High school has never been described as the best time of anyone's life. College has been described that way although that turned out to be true mostly for people who never went on to accomplish anything substantial in their professional lives.

by Anonymousreply 4706/18/2014

We don't all use our jobs as the basis for gauging the happiness of our lives, r47. I'm wary of anyone who does. I love my job but it's still only the means by which I pay for the things I really enjoy in life.

by Anonymousreply 4806/18/2014
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