No you’re not toxic, you’re human

As someone who is continuing to better myself and reach the best of my ability, there is always something to improve on. The most important thing I would want to tell my younger self is to stop stressing about what other people do in their life. The only person you can control is you,  this new wave of responsibility made me realize im not as mature as i thought i was.  

When I was in 7th grade I was a people pleaser, which would make me always would do things for people to like me. I craved this validation from others, because well, who wouldnt want to be liked by everyone?  Wether that was validation from friends, teachers, or even other adults i felt as if I needed it to be worthy. Because of how much I wanted to be liked I would advise my friends to tell me anything that was bothering them, volunteering to be some type of therapist to them. I wanted the best for them, I would often give them advice. This caused me to put so much effort and worry into other peoples lives, that i would genuinely be  stressed out on how other people lived there life. Wether that was them making the wrong decision or them doing something I would consider bad.

This trait of mine getting more toxic as the year went on, being some sort of tattle tale or policing my friends around when my intentions were to be the admirable “mom” friend of the group. My mental health declining because of me taking on all the unnecessary stress that really had nothing to do with me. Looking back on it i wish i learned how to say no earlier, wishing I could stand up for myself with confidence and to not let others push me around, and for me to not be overly concerned with others lives. When i did start to grasp this, I realized it was far to late. My friendships ultimately breaking because i decided to put myself first for once, I was called selfish, unreasonanbe and a plethora of curse words.

Its the beginning of 8th grade, a new school, a fresh start, a way to rebrand myself as someone i always wanted to be. I believe 8th grade was more successful then my attempt in 7th, learning how to state my boundaries clearly and confidently. Which made me learn its okay to be disliked. While i am not completely at where i want to be in my life, I look back on my 8th grade year fondly, finally being able to be happy in my own skin. Sometimes I catch myself still worrying about my peers decisions in life. An incident like this where on a field trip my “friends” decided to steal from the gift shop, me outwardly shaming them, bringing it up multiple times during the trip. Im embarrassed looking back on this, not only was i being annoying but it really was none of my business. And stressing myself out about it was ultimately useless. Am I saying to completely ignore someones wrong doings? Of course not, but i advise you to focus on whats best for you. You cant change other people, and dont let other people change you.

I hope i have many more learning experiences like this which will cause me to be in a state of self reflection. Believe me, its okay to make mistakes, nobody is perfect. But i advice you to use your past relationships and to use those learning lessons to strengthen your new ones.

Sania Nixon – Roycemore School – DMSF Class of 2027