Terrified to Start High School in September

Published: March 14, 2017
Dear TeenHealthFX,
I'm on the edge of crying and having a panic attack right now because I'm so stressed and scared. In September this year I'm going into high school and I am terrified. This year passed by so much faster than I thought it would and I lost all of my friends except for one, and I may not even be with her because we have different interests for courses and in general she is more advanced than I am in subjects. I hate talking to people and meeting people but at the same time the thought of having no one is so scary and just knowing that my friend is there, even if I don't hang out with her a lot or talk to her every day, just knowing she's there is so reassuring and I've heard so many stories about how people drift apart when they get to high school and I just don't wanna lose her. Additionally I'll be leaving behind teachers that I never thought I would love so much and I just loved the school and now it's gonna be taken away from me and I'm so scared for high school and just the future because I have no idea what I wanna do after school and because I have a learning disability I think I'm just gonna go nowhere in life and be living in my parents basement and he looked down apon because I can't do anything. I'm so scared. Please reply soon and help.
Signed: Terrified to Start School in September

Dear Terrified to Start School in September,

TeenHeathFX is truly sorry to hear about how much distress you are in. It sounds like there is a lot around relationships right now that is really scary for you in terms of who you feel is there for you right now and who will be there for you in the future. Close relationships with friends and family are generally our anchors that help is to feel safe and secure as we move on through life. And it sounds as if you are worried about those anchors right now and subsequently feeling fearful about what the future will hold for you.

Given the amount of distress you are feeling FX recommends that you meet with a reputable mental health professional, such as a clinical social worker or clinical psychologist, who has experience working with adolescents, anxiety and attachment issues. It would be helpful for you to speak to a therapist about your relationships with others to see if there have been things getting in the way of forming close, secure relationships with people that your therapist could help you with. You didn’t say anything about your parents, but it is important that they know what is going on with you and how they can be helpful to you with this. If you find it difficult speaking to them about these kinds of issues, then that is also something your therapist can help you with.

FX also thinks it would be beneficial for you to speak to your school counselor about this – at your current school and once you get to high school. It would be very helpful for you to have a trusted adult at your school who can talk to about this and who can provide you with the support and guidance you need.

FX appreciates how difficult all of this feels right now, but there are adults out there who can help you with these issues. So please reach as soon as possible so you can get the help you need and so that you are not dealing with this all alone.

If you live in northern New Jersey and need help finding a therapist you can call the Access Center from Atlantic Behavioral Health at 888-247-1400. Outside of this area you can log onto the US Department of Health and Human Services Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration website for referrals in your area. You can also contact your insurance company to get a list of in-network mental health providers or check with your school social worker or psychologist to get a list of referrals in your area.

Signed: TeenHealthFX