When the words “high school” are mentioned, for some reason, most people’s brains automatically jump to another word: drama. Maybe we can thank corny 80’s Brat Pack movies (holla at The Breakfast Club) and High School Musical (and if you say you’ve never watched it, you’re definitely lying) for that. Heck, if you watch any television show or movie involving a high school, there is always a feud between cliques.
But let’s face it. Drama is annoying, petty and distracting. And, interestingly enough, there seems to always be the most drama during junior and senior years (or at least, that was the case at my all-girl Catholic high school. You’d think we’d have gotten the drama out of the way in middle school, but nope!). Perhaps this is because junior and senior years are so incredibly stressful, and sometimes stress gets to your head. Sometimes we take out our stress on people because we feel like we have no other outlet. And that’s okay–we’re all human beings; we are far from perfect.
There are also times when you are dragged into drama for no apparent reason, and you’re left dazed and confused, wondering, “Um, this is uncomfortable please get me out of here.” Whether it’s family drama, friend drama, internet drama (sup Tumblr), or anything else, the negativity that feuds create affects your social life, mental health, and grades.
So, without further ado, here are three universally agreed upon (by the anti-drama gods) rules on how to avoid drama.
Take a step back.
True story: During junior year, there was a ton of tension in my friend group, and all of a sudden, one of my friends slams her lunch tray on the table and starts yelling at my other friend. In the middle of the cafeteria. The rest of us were sitting there like…
Ideally, the best thing to do in a situation like that, when it’s between two of your friends, is not to take sides. It’s so hard to be caught in the middle sometimes, but it is absolutely necessary to remove yourself from the situation and focus on other things. Since this was during junior year, neither my other friends or me had any free time to spend advising our other friend, as harsh as it sounds. But you gotta do what you gotta do. By all means, help your friends when they need it, but not at the expense of your grades or other things that may be important to you.
Don’t talk badly about people.
Since I was little, my mother always told me never to say something behind someone’s back that you would never say to their face. This is called backbiting, and it has never helped anyone. And more often than not, if you say something nasty about someone, it has a way of reaching them (because what goes around, comes around). Don’t say things you’ll regret–in the end, it might come back and slap you in the face.
Be a good confidante.
99.9% of drama begins when Friend 1 tells Friend 2 a secret about Friend 3, and Friend 2 tells a third party, and Friend 3 eventually finds out. If you are Friend 2, you can avoid a whole lot of drama by being a good confidante. If a friend confides in you about something, it’s because he/she trusts you, and once trust is broken, it’s extremely difficult to get back. Trust is sacred, especially in friendships. And consider the fact that you’d never want a friend to betray you by telling one of your secrets. Empathy is key, people!
Always know what’s important to you, never say things you wouldn’t want said about you, and keep trust in your friendships, and I assure you, the social aspects of junior and senior year will be smooth sailing. Now, as for the academic stuff…well, good luck, homies.