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Dear Dish-It Advice on Why It’s Okay to be Different

Apr 11, 2017

Naturally, it is not always easy to fit in or feel like you are like other people your own age. Well, it’s okay to be different. In fact, many people would say that what makes you different is what makes you beautiful and unique. Unfortunately, at these times of adolescence people may not look that deep (or beyond the surface), which can make it hard to survive the day-to-day of people. This week’s “Let's Talk About it Tuesday” discusses why it’s okay to be different, and addresses questions from kids and teens who are questioning their identity because they feel like they don’t fit in.

Let’s Take a Look at This Week’s Questions:

Question by Introvert?

People say I don't talk much (which I don't) and say that I'm peculiar and strange just because I like to read and stay indoors than to go outside and hang out with anybody. I'm like that girl who does her own thing in the back of the class.  Am I an introvert and how do I become more social? I don't really like to be by people and I like to keep to myself. Is that normal? Is it strange?

Insight/Advice:

Normal is whatever feels comfortable to you. If that’s who you are and that’s how you like to spend your time, there is nothing strange about it. Don’t question yourself and your personal longings. You are being true to yourself and that is an honorable and remarkable thing to do at this age. It’s not easy to go against the masses, but it makes you a brave individual. Don’t compare yourself to others, don’t let their opinions interfere with you being yourself. Focus on the people who get you and who bring you out of your shell—there will be people who you want to talk to, just give it time. The world wouldn’t function if everyone was an extrovert (so never consider yourself strange), plus they say the quietest people are usually the smartest. Don’t feel like just because you are quiet that you have to miss out on things that you like. Get involved where it suits you. Look into clubs and activities that compliment your hobbies and try to make friends with similar interests. The right people will come to love and respect the things that make you special so don’t feel like you need to change for anyone. As long as you are happy, that’s all that matters! 

When You Long to Be in the GroupWhen You Long to Be in the Group

Question by NerdGirl

I'm a nerd and a dork and I'm not in the popular group in our class. I always help everyone with their work but sometimes I feel the popular girls just dislike me but they always copy my work and get 100% (which they really need). I'm wondering if the fact that one of my friends is a really annoying girl that no one likes has something to do with it. I'm rarely in a bad mood and I never take it out on anyone. I go along with the popular girls' jokes etc. but it doesn't help.  I'm pretty happy as I am, and the popular girls seem to stress a lot about teachers, way more than I do.  The popular girls have up to four guys liking them, and that's something I envy them about. No guys like me.  Am I really missing that much? If so, what can I do about it?

Insight/Advice:

Firstly, why are you letting them copy your work? Do they make you do this, or do you feel obligated? Does this keep them cool with you? It sounds like the popular girls are using you. Do you really think you are missing out on people who copy off of hard-working students? They may be the popular girls now, but you’ll get your day in the sun. There will come a time when guys like you, it just might not be right now. Don’t be envious. Be confident of what your future holds. It sounds like you’ve got a good head on your shoulders and could really go far academically. You can have your dream job and your dream man, just give it time. Remember that most if not all relationships at this age end because it is soon to meet the person you are going to be with forever. Focus on school because that you can control and perhaps let the popular girls knows that they can’t just copy of you (but you are happy to help them), because what you are doing is cheating, and one day you are bound to get caught. Are they really worth getting in trouble for? Look out for yourself and good things will come. You’re smart and intelligent, but you are not a geek or a nerd. Have value in yourself, don’t put yourself down, and don’t let others put you down. You get 100% at school, you’ve got a lot of positive going on, now it's time to use it to your advantage.

When You Feel Like an OutcastWhen You Feel Like an Outcast

Question by Random Donut

Hi, I am an outcast everyone at my school has clicks you know the Nerds and Jock also popular, The hipsters and so on. I can’t fit in to save my life and I do not have friends anymore, they got accepted to the populars. Basically, I am alone I sit alone at lunch and my only friend is my mum. I tried joining clubs like I did drama. But no one liked me there. The last thing I tried was cheerleading and was awesome but they so no. The only people who talk to me is boys and its because they think I am cute. But I just want to be in a group or to have a friend that's a girl so I can actually go on my first sleepover and do girly things How do I become not an Outcast? Help please.

Advice/Insight:

Sounds you're really lonely and tired of not being included. It also sounds like you tried a few things to resolve this issues and none of them worked. You mentioned your old friends who have turned popular now, would any of them stick their neck out for you? Have you tried talking to them? It’s not easy, but you need to fight through it. Things can change at any time. You have to remain hopeful and stay open towards opportunities to meet new people. The more you embrace yourself and who you are the less you will feel like an outcast. Like even when you didn’t get into Cheerleading, you still knew you were awesome, lead with this mentality and rise up above everyone else. Focus on what you think and not on how they made you feel. Reach out to people who you think you’d get along with and continue to take new chances. Drama club and Cheerleading may not have worked out, but something will. You will find where you belong, just keep looking and try to remember that you aren’t alone. Having good family support is a huge plus, and you’re lucky to have those supports in your life because a lot of people don’t.

Question by Future biologist

First, I feel I'm ugly. I have a big nose and facial hair :(. People make fun of me. Second, no one ever understands me. Even mum. Also people say I'm silly although I'm serious. I'm tired and I am feeling like an outcast and I Won't have any luck. I feel frustrated. People never appreciate my hobbies and talents. What shall I do?

Advice/Insight: 

I know it sounds hard to grasp at this age, but it really doesn’t matter what people think. It matters what you think. It’s hard because we all want to fit in. We all want to feel the validation from others, but we have to learn to give it ourselves. Anything we experience above that is extra, and that’s what you should consider lucky. The things you get on top of the things you give yourself/the things you already have. Don’t compare yourself to others, just because a certain girl gets more attention, it does not mean she is more attractive. Everyone has their time, but we never all get it at once. At this age, we are growing into our looks and our bodies and faces are constantly changing. Don’t give up on your beauty or put yourself down. No one is going to like what they see if you don’t. There is something to admire in every person, and the right people will see it in you. They will respect your hobbies. Even if they don’t want to peruse them, they will respect them. They will love you for you and nothing more or less. I know it seems like a fantasy world, but it can happen and is more likely to happen the moment you embrace yourself and your differences. People will be attracted to your individuality because it shows that you are staying true to yourself. Give it time and hang in there, and remember the only opinion that matters is your own. 

When you Feel So AloneWhen you Feel So Alone

Afterthoughts

It can be really hard to fit in at school, especially when it seems like there are these defined groups. Be patient. This will not always be. Once you are old enough, people don’t base things off of “popular” or “cool” or “nerd.” People see each other for who they are as people and love them for their personalities. It just takes time, and no it is not easy, but you’ve got to hang in there and see how it all unfolds. If you say that your mom is your only friend, it’s not the worst case scenario. You are not alone. You still have people supporting you. Focus on those supports, the ones you know you can trust and don’t worry about anything else. Those are the relationships that matter. We always want what we can’t have, but we fail to look at what we do have. Try to find things in life to be grateful about because there are lots of options.

If you feel like you are “different” that is okay, embrace this. Do the things that make you happy and try not to care what others think. Your school doesn’t define you, you define you. The less attention you pay to everyone else, and the more attention you place upon yourself, the happier you will be. Remember, your school might make it harder to be yourself with all these different groups, but the real world is an open oyster just waiting for your eccentricity!

Interested in getting in touch with Dear Dish-It? Simply email deardish@kidzworld.com with your concern, and we will address you on “Let’s Talk about it Tuesday” if your question is suitable for our topic of conversation. Regardless, keep your eyes peeled as Dear Dish-It it is covering a lot of issues, and you never know when your question or topic of concern will be featured in an article. Please let us know if you would like your handle to be listed as anonymous and list your age in your question if you would like as that can impact advice. To learn the Do's and Don'ts of Dear Dish-It and to find out what kind of questions are appropriate, check out this article!

Have Your Say

Do you feel like you fit in? Did this advice help you?  Comment below!

 

 

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Do Your Friends Annoy You?

  • Yeah, my friends annoy me all the time.
  • Sometimes my friends can get on my nerves.
  • No, me and my friends usually get along really well.
  • I don't really have friends to annoy me.

Dear Dish-It In The Forums

drowning
drowning posted in Style:
  "imtcutiie" wrote: DONT DO IT JUST PLEASE #### #### #### ......... CHANGING EYE COLOR  JUST WRONG   Changing eye color isn't wrong. :^) But, you can't simply change it with "spells" or videos. To change your eye color, you will need to either wear contacts during the day to appear that you have different colored eyes than you truly have, or medically having a doctor perform surgical iris correction.
reply 24 minutes
drowning
drowning posted in Family Issues:
I hope you texted back if you felt that it would be the right thing to do for yourself. I did not have a good childhood due to my birthmother and father. But, in recent time, I have come to enjoy talking to my birthfather and completely cannot stand my birthmother or her new husband anymore. I plan to actually meet him for the first time in 16 years if I can join my fiancé's family vacation.  Point of the matter, do what you feel is right. If you want to talk to him; talk to him. If you don't, don't reply if you don't feel comfortable too. It is purely your choice who you allow in your life, even when it comes down to blood and family.
reply 27 minutes
drowning
drowning posted in Family Issues:
It isn't pathetic in the slightest to seek help. I don't think it is right for your mother and siblings to completely disown you over your choice of living arrangements. If they have pushed you away, remember that it is not your fault and it is purely theirs. You made a choice that you felt would benefit you, and judging from their behavior, it was a good choice. As for your father, I don't fight with my own very much, but when I do it tends to be pretty bad. My mother on the other hand, I fight with constantly so I understand where you're coming from. You shouldn't have to do anything. From the sound of it, it seems more like a personal issue going on with himself, especially a sense of shame or regret with his previous exes so he uses you as an outlet because you're the closest thing he has.  I say find an outlet, a healthy one. Sometimes it is best to let them ramble on until they wear themselves out, but remember that self-defense and "talking back" is not always a bad thing just because they are your guardian. It is important to take a stand for yourself. Be respectful, don't sink to their level.
reply 32 minutes
drowning
drowning posted in Family Issues:
I think it is very important to find a healthy outlet and someone to talk to whether it's a doctor, friend, family member, ect. You can even find a journal to write in, if it will help you. I promise you, it isn't worth it to let families opinions and views affect you. I let the same thing happen to me and I still struggle over things that I wish I didn't.
reply 38 minutes
drowning
drowning posted in Friends:
Personally, given your age, the idea of a crush is a bit cute, but you're a little young for anything serious. I would recommend waiting until you truly know what you're doing. (And, believe me, you may not see it now, but you will when you're older.) But, if you really do want to find out, you need to remember that boys and girls both feel things. Boys aren't aliens, they aren't emotionless, and they aren't always just  dumbieheads.  You'll find it funny later on in life from how nervous you had gotten over a crush So honestly, just be straight forward. If you need a topic starter to bring it up, joke about old rumors that used to spread about you both.
reply 40 minutes