Math, English, Physical Education (PE), Health, History -- every high #school student knows the core classes. A few years ago I had an amazing Health teacher for my freshman year. It was at that time that my life was falling apart. My parents were divorcing, my brother was being arrested every other week, and I was dealing with self-hate. Everything was my fault, or so I thought. I could only find comfort in that Health class. Learning about our bodies, and global health as well.

Since then, I've realized that Health isn't simply how our bodies work, or how they don't work. Health is more complicated. Recently, with all the importance we are placing on emotional health and #self-love -- especially young people around my age -- I don't think too many people are in the dark anymore about how much accepting yourself really matters.

Advertisements
Advertisements

Insight into a high schooler's mind

But I digress. Why I'm writing this, is to perhaps show people that while getting A's and B's is great, it's impossible for students to concentrate or enjoy learning when they're fighting an internal battle that no one else can see. Nearly twenty percent of high schoolers are categorically depressed in any one school. That number is too high. School teaches us things that we "need": how to multiply large numbers, how to detect iambic pentameter, even how our teenage bodies process sugar and how that affects our brains. But why is no one teaching us how to accept ourselves?

That might sound naive -- some people might say, you just do it! You just love yourself, as simple as that. Obviously, it isn't that easy or we'd all be doing it. Nowadays, emotional health is as important to most people as physical health.

Advertisements

So, why is there no class out there called Self-Worth 101? Well, I don't have an answer to that. Adults don't seem to think we need that class, maybe? I don't know.

What we need to see

Here's what I can tell you; if I had been given a safe classroom, with a kind teacher who understood the importance of teaching self-love, and fellow students who cared about why we were there, my freshman year would have gone amazingly. In fact, my life might have been changed forever. We don't need a teacher to tell us to be happy, that everything will be okay, and that we deserve the world. We're not children anymore. We want to hear why we're there. Teach us how our young brains are shaped by what we're learning, and how many people suffer from depression, suicide, and self-harm. We're almost adults, we can stand to hear this.

We want to know why it's important to accept ourselves, why we should, and how we can. If schools were honest when they said they taught students what they need to know to succeed in adult life, then I have no doubt there would be a class like this in every school.

Advertisements

Truth be told, society seems to be a few years away from integrating classes like Self-Worth 101 into our repertoire, but we can still let each other know that this is something we'd like to see someday soon. #emotional health