What even matters anymore

my mental health has been going downhill since April 2023. still, I managed to score quite well (L1R4 single-pointer) for my O’s, and got into a rather tough polytechnic course with a low cut-off point.

I was so excited for a fresh start. I thought poly life would be the magic antidepressant I needed. I would meet new people, make new friends, explore a huge new campus, join a more advanced CCA, and most importantly, I’d be studying something I actually, truly enjoyed.

that didn’t happen.

I dont have friends. I have reliable groupmates, but I wouldn’t call them my friends.

I cannot connect with anyone. I miss laughing like I did in sec 3 and sec 4, when ■■■■ wasnt so bad.

even my old friends, I dont even consider them friends anymore. every time they talk to me I’m just so ■■■■■■■ annoyed by them because they don’t seem to care that something’s wrong with me. I’m obviously not the same person they became friends with 2 years ago. if they were really my friends, they’d care enough to ask.

I don’t understand what’s going on in class. And it ■■■■■■■ sucks because I feel like all my time is spent studying and doing my project works but im not feeling any sense of achievement. no matter how many library trips I take, once I take a step back, I realize it took me an hour to study one page. ONE PAGE. (1) (one) (ONE)

my exams are in august and I’m so bloody unprepared. I tell myself I can start now, just do a little bit everyday, for a while I can believe I’ll still score well on my exams. then I remember at the same time I have like 5 ongoing group + individual coursework projects.

if only I didn’t need to sleep. if only I had more time.

but then I take an even further step back, and I realize:

if I get a high gpa, I’m just putting more stress on myself for next year to uphold those grades; and I know my mental health cant handle that. it never gets better.

if I get a low gpa, I’m just too embarrassed to show my face anywhere and I’m gonna grow to hate my course, more than I already do.

I can’t be happy either way.

I’ve had suicidal thoughts because of all this.

I told myself I’d wait until September because that’s when I have an upcoming psychiatric appointment. if I can get a diagnosis, if I can get medication, maybe my brain will start working again like it did when I peaked in sec 3. maybe I can go back to that.

and if not, then uh


Hi @Aquivy! It sounds like you’re having a really hard time adjusting to poly life. A few thoughts that your post brought to mind for me, specifically about mixed expectations,

It seems like you had a lot of expectations going into poly for how it would be the ‘magic antidepressant’, with new social circles, activities, and that you’d ‘be studying something you actually truly enjoyed’. I’m a bit confused, as you also mention that your brain ‘peaked in sec 3’. I wonder how high was that peak, and do you want to move towards or away from that peak? Could you help me understand how you came to place so much hope in your poly experience in being this magic antidepressant for you?

It seems to me that this trend continues with your friend group. You say that you don’t consider your old friends your friends anymore, as you’ve changed but they don’t seem to care enough to ask what has changed. But you also mention missing laughing like you did in sec 3 and 4 (I assume with this same group of friends!). I’m curious how you’ve explained to them that you’ve changed, and what you’ve asked of them in your relationships with them to help you feel joyful like in the past?

Similarly, it seems that there is a great deal of uncertainty with regards to your academics. There seems to be a lot of indecision between getting a high GPA or not, and the associated stresses that both options will bring. I’m curious where the assumption that getting a high GPA would put yourself in a more stressful position to do the same? What if you were to get a medium GPA? Or have a high GPA one year, and a low GPA the next? How would these outcomes affect your perception of yourself?

There is also the magic bullet of getting a diagnosis and starting on medication. I wonder how you imagine medication will help your brain work like it did in the past, and again, is that past something you really want to go back to, given how eager you were to have a fresh start in poly?

It sounds like there is a lot of struggle between wanting to move forward in life, versus wanting to go back to a past that seemed happier. Constantly jumping between these expectations sounds exhausting, especially when you have your academic commitments as well. I wonder if it would be helpful for you to think about those expectations that you had when entering poly, and ask yourself which you want to prioritize first?

Having said that, I want to wish you all the best in your studies! Do share with us if you have any further thoughts!