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Accepting who you are: The regrets of a former Prep


When you look in the mirror, what do you see? Is it the person you claim to be, or is it a pale reflection of who you think you are? 
So much in our society is judged from the “image” and not from the important qualities we as individuals posses, such as morals, trust, and positive ambition among others. These attributes somehow get the backseat when traveling the road called life, later being kicked to the curb resembling a roadside afterthought. 
The road is one that isn’t easy, and with the yearning to be like the “Joneses,” the popularity, the respect, and most importantly the image… is quite tempting to avoid. 
I have been in a position, to where I had to choose between doing what’s right and unpopular, or what’s wrong, but expectable from societies standards. I had choose between being a bully to people who didn’t deserve it, just to be apart of a group that people in high school thought was cool.
I’m a former prep, and even though it’s hard for me to admit it now, I was apart of that social group, and it was the center of my world at the time. 
The problems we gave other students that didn’t fit in our particular group, who didn’t make as much as our parents, who didn’t drive the kind of vehicles our parents drove, who didn’t have the latest gadgets we had, so on and so forth, were considered unworthy to even speak while passing our prep table during lunch.
This kind of prejudice has evolved from the awkward teenage years and the common popularity contests in high school, to the now, half-druggy/promiscuous persuasion in college. 
If you’re not “hip,” if that’s the way you want to put it… with getting a momentary high, or drinking till you puke your guts out, your not considered cool by the common college student standard. 
I stumbled upon a video on youtube, that stated exactly, “how to get high” in the drop down list, when looking for “how to export a graphics file.”
The question I ask, is why would anyone wan’t to learn how to get high? The answers is, to fit in… To be like everyone else, but most of all to feel excepted.  
This can be seen in children, teenagers, and adults, who are unhappy with themselves and need some form of a crutch, making them feel a fictional sense sel
I’m not here to knock anyones beliefs, or to target anyones social groups or activities outside the classroom, but what I am here for, is to share my experiences with you all, to let you know that you don’t need things, or an image to make you feel wanted. True self-value comes from within, not what is seen on the surface for others to admire. 
I know, it’s not easy to feel separated and alone. I was at one point. I went from everyone knowing my name and treating me with respect, wanting to be like me, wanting to have the life I had, to recently, a nobody, that is until I found a new place where I fitted in. 
This newspaper is where I find solitude, where I feel I’m needed and wanted. It’s positive not negative, and will look great on a resume. 
I’m not saying for everyone to come and join The Apache Pow Wow, but what I mean is, for you to find activities on campus or in the community where you feel included and accepted for who you are, not who you pretend to be. 
No one needs to result to unethical means of behavior just to say, you fit in. It’s not worth it.
We do have the freedom to participate or even protest against what we believe in, we are in America… But for those who feel bullying, drinking, taking drugs, or even being promiscuous is the way to go, please at least think, is this worth it in the end…? NO. It isn’t.
Take it from someone who knows, someone who is still carrying the regrets of being a former prep. I see both sides much clearly now, and I’ve excepted who I’am. Have you? 

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