I got my grade card the other day, and although it didn’t have actual estimates grades, it did have effort grades.
Here’s our effort grade system:
E – Excellent
V – Very Good
G – Good
S – Satisfactory
N – Not satisfactory
I do 4 subjects (AS Level in the UK) and got ‘E’s and ‘V’s in 3 of them, except my favourite subject.
The subject I work hardest in, the subject I am passionate about, I got an S. Now don’t get me wrong, in some situations ‘satisfactory’ would be great, but considering that is the lowest mark apart from ‘not satisfactory’ (which teachers hardly ever give) and the fact I’ve been putting my all into it, I was pretty upset.
Depression is a horrible thing, and this grade only makes it worse.
I emailed my teacher saying that I was disappointed and that I was working really hard and didn’t feel that he’d given me a chance, and he emailed back with this response (I’ve just picked out the few key bits I want to focus on):
“There have been several occasions where you have come into the room and immediately rested your head on the table, or done so during the lesson”
“… your focus has been lower than required at times” etc.
Reading that makes me feel like someone has punched me in the stomach. The teacher knows I was off school almost all of last year, that I dropped two GCSEs/ subjects because I couldn’t keep up, that I was ill. Why do I even bother trying if my hardest efforts only get rewarded with ‘satisfactory’.
I am depressed, that is why I rest my head on the table in some lessons. Simply because I am about to cry. That, in that moment, I want nothing more than to scream and relapse into self harm. That even sitting there is one hell of an achievement.
Does no one understand that?! How hard I’m trying?!
Yes, my focus is terrible. But after missing a whole year of school isn’t that understandable?
I find 6th form/ college extremely difficult, from work to friendships. I have my lessons right at the end of the day, when I’m tired and just about holding it together. As soon as I get home (/in the car even) I break.
There’s only so long someone can keep that smile plastered to their face. There’s only so long you can convince people you’re ok.
Last time when my mask fell it was because I was dangerously underweight and had to be pulled out of school, and I’m trying my hardest to stay away from that. Every time I show emotions something goes wrong because of it.
I don’t even know what to do anymore. I know it must seem like such a petty thing, but to me it is really important. I absolutely love this subject and hope to continue it at uni, yet from anyone else’s point of view it looks like I don’t give a dam about that subject! I feel so set back in my recovery, and I don’t know how I can survive another two years of this hell, also known as college.
Sorry for the ramble, I really needed to let that out; and I hope that by sharing it maybe others will read it and understand depression and mental health more.
Thanks for reading.