everyone at school hates me

dear heather,
Everyone at school seems to hate me. I try to be as nice as possible and even try introducing myself to new people but it never works! I never sound desperate when I do it, just polite. Even my old friends are beginning to ignore me and we’re losing touch. What can I do to make more friends?

I can understand your frustration, especially after trying so hard, but perhaps trying hard isn’t the best approach for you. When people are overly concerned with making friends, they sometimes don’t realize just how “needy” they appear. The behavior of formally introducing yourself may be off-putting to someone your own age and probably more appropriate for adults in a business setting. You might want to try just striking up a conversation with someone about something that’s going on around you first. One thing that might make that easier is to find activities that you like to do and do them. Getting to know people you have something in common with, in a context, makes things a bit easier.

In any situation, though, try not to take it personally if a person doesn’t respond to your attempt to strike up a conversation. People have their moods. They may be distracted by their own preoccupations, or may simply be shy. Assuming it’s about you will only add to your feeling of unworthiness and others will sense how you feel about yourself.

Try this exercise. Take a piece of paper and write down all the things that you know in your heart would make you an excellent friend. Review the list every morning before you go to school for that extra shot of confidence.

take care,

Posted in: Friends, Help Me Heather
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