If you’re going to be starting high school, you’re probably very curious to know what it’s like. After all, you’ve likely seen a lot of movies about it and heard other people talk about it. You might have even asked people about their high school experiences. Listening to other people’s perspectives can be helpful to get a sense of what high school is like, but the problem is that people can end up perpetuating myths and stereotypes.
It’s unlikely they’re doing it on purpose. They probably don’t even realize they’re doing it and think that they’re being helpful. Or, maybe it’s been a while since they were in school and their ideas about high school have been mixed with movies, fragments of memory, and stuff everybody hears about high school.
Everybody has different high school experiences so the things you go through will likely be different than what your friends, your siblings, or your family went through. But, there are still some common things that people think about high school that aren’t accurate. Here are 14 common myths that people have probably led you to believe about high school.
1. That freshmen get picked on by the older kids.
You might be stressing that you’re going to get thrown into a garbage can or hazed on your first day. Stop stressing. This is real life. If someone did that you, they would be in serious trouble. Besides, the older students have college and their futures on their minds. Are they going to risk throwing that away because they can stuff some kid in a trash can? Nope. It was only a few years ago they were in the same position, so they will likely want to help.
2. That you’re going to have so much freedom.
Hahahaha Your middle school teachers might have told you this about high school. You might have a bit more freedom than you did in middle school, but you’re still going to find yourself having to obey some ridiculous rules. And you will be punished if you don’t adhere to them. There is a reason why detention is a common part of high school. Oh, and we cannot forget about late slips.
3. All of the popular girls are mean.
No, high school isn’t Mean Girls. There might be certain aspects of the movie that are true, but it’s unlikely there’s some Queen Bee in your school with Plastics. If there is, she’s obviously self-styling herself as one. In terms of popular people, you will find that some of the most popular people are the ones people want to actually hang around with. They’re not popular because people are scared of them.
4. If you don’t have a boyfriend you’re a loser.
Were people considered losers in middle school if they didn’t have boyfriends? Nope. And it’s the same thing in high school. You might be older and more people might be getting into their first relationships, but you’re definitely not going to be ostracized if you don’t have a boyfriend. You know what? It’s doubtful people will even pick up on it. Most don’t care that much or they could assume you’re going out with someone from another school. What’s more, there’s nothing wrong with being single and high school students know that.
5. That you can take courses you want to take.
This is something else that you were probably dreaming about in middle school where you were forced to take classes that bored you to tears. You will get some choice about what you take in high school, but it’s not as much as you think. When you’re a freshman, your options are a lot more restricted compared to when you’re a senior.
6. That high school is the best time of your life.
Some people might have an awesome time in high school. Others might find it okay while others might hate it. Even if you have a good time in school, it’s a pretty big thing to say it’s going to be the *best time of your life* especially when you have so much of your life ahead of you. Some people might say it to get you pumped, but it just makes you wonder what the rest of life is like if high school is considered so good. Don’t worry, it’s definitely not downhill after high school.
7. You need to be a cheerleader to be considered cool.
Ah, another thing we can thank movies for perpetuating. Cheerleading may or may not be popular at your school. If you like to cheer, good for you. If you don’t, good for you. If you fall into the second camp, you’re not going to be looked down on because you’re not a cheerleader. It’s ridiculous. There are also likely more people who aren’t cheerleaders than are.
8. …And you *must* attend Friday night football games.
If you like sports, you might want to attend some football games. If not, don’t feel like you’re going to be missing out on an essential social gathering. It’s not true. People who go to football games go to enjoy them. They’re not a go-there-to-be-seen event. Friday nights are a time to celebrate the weekend and do what you want to do.
9. You will have one tight-knit squad.
We all hear about people who have these tight-knit groups of friends who do everything together for four years. That can be true in some people’s cases. In others, they can have a varied group of friends that changes from year to year or class to class. You might find yourself hanging out with your middle school friends more in the early years then you might branch out through the years as you connect with people who share your interests.
10. That you’re going to be forced to read awful things.
I get that most people don’t like to be forced to read books that they didn’t choose. Well, sometimes you can choose the books you read in high school. Another thing is that they don’t choose books specifically that you will hate. The books will likely have many themes and you might just find yourself really enjoying some of them.
11. That it’s suuuuuuuuuuuper cliquey.
People might naturally develop their own groups, but they’re not sealed off from others. People aren’t that intense. If you want to be friends with someone from a certain group and a few people in another, they’ll likely all be into it. And if you want to sit with someone for lunch one day and someone else on another day, it’s likely they will all be welcoming.
12. You will be judged by what you wear.
Your wardrobe is not going to determine your fate in high school. You’re not going to be cut off from cliques if you don’t wear pink on Wednesdays and you’re not going to get ostracized if you don’t wear the right boots. It’s natural that some people will look at your clothes and maybe silently applaud or critique them, but you probably to it, too. And no one knows you’re doing it. The only time you will likely get in trouble for your clothes is if you break the school dress code.
13. Going to prom is the ultimate thing to do in high school.
Prom is considered a big deal for many, but it’s not something that you have to do. Just because a lot of people do it doesn’t mean that you have to be like anyone else. It’s your call. Outside of your circle of friends, it likely won’t make much of a difference to others whether you attend or not. Even your friends will likely understand if you have valid reasons for not wanting to go.
14. That all school clubs are lame.
Has someone told you that if you’re not a cheerleader or football player, you better not join any other school clubs? Don’t listen to them. There are lots of school clubs to choose from and there might be one that appeals to your interests. If not, you could create your own club. There’s nothing lame about pursuing your passions.
What’s stressing you out about high school? Let us know in the comments!
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