While many students findthemselves dealing with heavy workloads and increased pressure to achieve, veryfew find asking for help to be an easy thing to do.One reason that receiving help isa difficult task for many students is, once again, the pressure to achieve andmanage perfectly. This pressure leads to young people feeling that they havefailed themselves, their parents or their school should they need to ask forhelp with their work.
Schools that have the majority of students reaching thehighest grades possible leave the rest of their students aiming for thosegrades as a minimum and being marked unsuccessful if they don’t manage toachieve them. The belief that a young person has failed makes seeking help embarrassingas they do not want to admit that they have struggled. Seeking help also putsyoung people in a position where they feel vulnerable and judged as mostsystems for help within schools are not anonymous and do not target a largeaudience. Having an anonymous help system would mean that students would be ableto seek help without the worry of people finding out or making judgements basedon them needing help. Support systems and advice being aimed at a largeaudience would mean that a young person seeking help would feel less alone and moreable to blend in.
For example, lessons or assemblies on mental health andwell-being enables students to learn important information without having peopleknow that they need the information.Many schools and families pridethemselves on being ‘happy’ and have systems and slogans promoting forcedhappiness. This leads students to feel that they are failing schools orfamilies should they not fit the expectation of happiness. This sense of failureor guilt regularly stops students seeking help as they feel it will be the ‘endof the world’ as well as feeling that teachers and parents will think a studentto be less capable if they need help.Another reason is that whilestudents are aware that there is a problem with the expectations set for themand the realistic abilities of young people, they do not feel that theirproblem is valid. Many students have been told at some point in their livesthat they are ‘lucky’ or ‘fortunate’ to have the education that they do.
Whilethis is true as many young people across the world do not have access to andeducation anywhere near the level of students in the United Kingdom, it leavesUK students feeling that they are being ungrateful for what they have andguilty that they are struggling when others have it so much worse. This leadsto an internal belief that their problems are not valid and so they are notdeserving of help.