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Opinion: Finding Your People

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Opinion: Finding Your People

A picture of the group of people I found after transferring to RHS.

A picture of the group of people I found after transferring to RHS.

Emma Haun

A picture of the group of people I found after transferring to RHS.

Emma Haun

Emma Haun

A picture of the group of people I found after transferring to RHS.

By Emma Haun, Ross High School

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Friend. A word directly linked to good jokes and wonderful memories. Genuine happiness is often due to the people we surround ourselves with. Over the past two years, however, this wasn’t the case for me.

According to VeryWellMind.com, a friend is supposed to be a source of encouragement and support, striving to boost your confidence every day.  

The website stated, “Friends are especially important during times of crisis and turbulence. If you find yourself going through a hard time, having a friend to help you through can make the transition easier.”

But what about when the same people you call friends are the people putting you in a tough spot?

The first two years of my high school experience at a different school, I was treated poorly within my friend group. This ranged from insults, to ridicule, to simply being left out of plans they made. Though being left out of plans can seem like a minor complaint, it really tore me down. It led to me questioning my worth and believing lies about myself. In my opinion, whoever said sticks and stones may break my bones but words will never hurt me is a liar.

I love to lend an ear and support my friends, but I believe that in a good friendship that should be from both sides. The people who made up my circle of friends throughout my freshman and sophomore years tended to use me as a therapist, yet refused to hear me out on any of my problems or help me in any way. That friend group hurt me so badly, that I left that school and transferred to Ross in Aug. of 2018.

Out of a survey of 37 RHS students, 67.7% shared that they have previously been in friend groups in which they were treated imperfectly.

It can be hard to stand up for yourself, especially to the people who you thought would be by your side for the long run. Some RHS students shared the things they did to distance themselves from those people.

Freshman Nevada Thomas said she did this by, “Leaving group chats, slowly making new friends, moving tables, and basically removing myself as much as possible from situations they were in.”

For me, after being treated so poorly, I made it my goal at Ross to find my people, the people who would stick by my side through the good and bad. I have been very successful in this, as I’ve found some of my pals I hope to have for eternity in a class of only 11 people. I am lifted up by these people day after day, and they push me to unapologetically be myself.

The same way I lucked out in the new friend jackpot, sophomore Charlotte Spencer stated, “My current friends always listen, they care about me, they are there for me no matter what, and they have similar yet very different personalities compared to me, they are my forever friends.”

Though life can get frustrating, lonely, and dramatic at times, finding your friends and fighting for each other will help you figure out the type of person that helps you grow and flourish as an individual. True friends will respect you and your values and will make you feel loved. So go make a friend. You might be as fortunate as I was; you might find your people.

This story was originally published on Ross High Times on March 1, 2019.

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