A Perspective: by Brigette Stoddard
The halls were quiet today, an unsettling quiet that you could feel in pit of your stomach. The library was worse, a sharp silence, not the usual warm bustle of shuffling papers and typing on keyboards. The entire building of Brighton High School on October 4t, 2018 had an entirely different chill to it, one that no number of jackets could shelter from.
It’s so easy to avoid talking about mental health; it's also so easy to just say, “let’s talk about this”-- too easy. Look around you right now. Just look. Take a second to watch the people around you, peers, seemingly insignificant background characters in your day to day life. Every single person you have met is facing their own battles, whether they show it or not.
Our generation is so obsessed with image, even I am at times. Deep down, there can always be something going on, even for the happiest people. You may not even relatively know what goes on in your best friend’s head. You may not even understand what goes on in yours. We are teenagers. We’re just starting to figure out who we are. These four years will impact us as people for the rest of our lives; please understand that when you have interactions with others. Check on your friends, ask them how they are.
It seems that we are repeating the same things over and over again, yet nothing seems to be working.
It makes me nauseous that so many of us have to go home and deal with our struggles on our own, even hiding them from our families. We then proceed to go to school and put on this facade like nothing is going wrong. We all cope differently. Some people are more reserved, and keep an eye out for them, even the happiest people may be dealing with so many demons. Humor is a common smokescreen I find myself using to deflect my friends from my emotions, because I’ve just been taught throughout my life that showing emotions is a weakness. That opening up to people will only end up in me being hurt in the long run. It makes me feel alone, even when I’m surrounded by loved ones. Don’t feel alone. It’s not healthy for us to bottle things up inside until we have a mental breakdown. Talk to your friends, trust me, they will understand. Brighton has counselors and teachers who care, we have Safe2Tell, and there are so many other accessible resources to talk things through.
Just think things through for a second, please. We all want you here, and even if you do feel like you are going through things by yourself, you aren’t. Each individual person matters so much, especially in such a small town like Brighton.
We may not have the most expensive school, or the top tier resources, but our community is unlike any other community I’ve ever seen. As the weather gets colder and we all get submerged into the daily routine of school, stay strong. Your mental health is first, and you can do whatever you need to maintain that.