Many of our writing prompts ask students to respond to breaking news, like the newest Marvel movie, the vaccination debate, or the recent college admissions cheating scandal. But many others ask about more evergreen topics, like whether children need recess and what it’s like to be left out. Since our writing prompts are open for comment indefinitely, students can chime in on topics like these at any time.
In fact, we’d like to give a shout out to students from Lakewood High School in Ohio and Homewood High School in Alabama, both new to our site this week, who have been writing excellent comments on our prompts from this week and weeks past. We love having new classes add their voices to the ongoing conversation on our site.
Thank you to all the other new classes who joined us this week: Congress Middle School; Hawthorne Math and Science Academy; Kirkwood, Mo.; Louisiana; Maples Met School; Nipher Middle School; Ridgeview Middle School, Visalia, Calif.; Suffern High School; The Galloway School, Atlanta, Ga.; and Walla Walla High School, Walla Walla, Wash.
And welcome back to loyal commenters from: Danvers, Mass.; Hoggard High School; Julia Reynolds Masterman Laboratory and Demonstration School; and Providence, R.I.
We never get tired of reading what you have to say. Keep up the great work, everyone!
Please note: All student comments have been lightly edited for length, but otherwise appear as they were originally submitted.
__________Do We Need More Female Superheroes?
On its opening day on March 8, “Captain Marvel,” starring Brie Larson, became the first film in the Marvel movie franchise to focus principally on a woman. In light of this historic moment, we wanted to know: Does the gender of a superhero matter? Do we need more female superheroes?
We asked students and they responded with mixed reactions. An overwhelming majority said, yes, equitable gender representation can have profound societal and personal impacts. But others argued that the Marvel Universe is a business, “not an activist group.” Still others said we have more important things to worry about than what gender our superheroes are.
Representation matters — we need more female superheroes!
Do we need more female superheros? Yes, yes and YES!! Representation is essential in all forms of media. While I’d like to say that I don’t factor in things like gender or race when I look at a character, I do notice those things. It’s nice when a character looks like me, or has similar problems. You connect more to a character when they remind you of yourself.
— Ashley Anderson, Hoggard High School, NC
It’s been proven that without roles for others to look up to, many won’t go against the tide; a rule that can be spoken for the same aspects of race and sexuality. Seeing people like us in a position of power, success, wealth helps us to dream, to learn. Without female superheroes, girls wouldn’t be encouraged to empower themselves or fellow women. They wouldn’t want to become the superheroes of our society: the lawyers, the police women, the fire women, the doctors. When you don’t see people that are like you - struggling, flawed, anti-heroic - it’s difficult to accept who you are, to love yourself for who you are. Female superheroes give girls, boys, and everyone in between the knowledge that you can be whoever or whatever you wish.
— Alexandria, Lakewood, OH
… When boys and girls see superhero movies portraying both powerful men and women, they develop more of a notion that men and women have equal roles in society. This allows them to believe that one group does not dominate over the other; rather, men and women can work with each other to better the society in which we live. Marvel superhero movies are one step in developing an understanding of women as resilient, courageous, and positive role models for the general public and for young children and teenagers. According to Dave Itzkoff, the essential change that is beginning to include both genders is “slow but it’s happening.” Through their recent addition of more women who share qualities of brave leaders, Marvel is helping to create a society where men and women are both seen as superheroes.
— Francesca, Providence, Rhode Island
Representation is always going to be important in all media, especially the film industry. It means a lot to children to be able to relate to characters that they admire, especially superheros. When Wonder Woman came out, my younger sisters were so excited. They hadn’t really liked superhero movies before they watched wonder woman, but after I watched them talk about the movie in such an awed and inspired way. Even I could feel the effects of seeing someone that I could relate to on screen. We felt empowered, like there was nothing that could stop us.
— Keira Braithwaite, Hoggard High
Allowing increased representation for historically disadvantaged groups is a vital priority for Hollywood during this monumental cultural moment. Though it may sound surprising, the entertainment industry’s history of discrimination and institutional issues explains Marvel’s decade-long wait to release superhero films that don’t focus on white male characters.
A year ago, Black Panther permanently impacted popular culture with its groundbreaking images of African heroism and massive box-office success. Similarly, Captain Marvel will symbolize a long-awaited moment of superhero representation, this time for women rather than African-Americans. If the film becomes another ground-breaking success, it could shatter the “fallacy” that “while women will watch movies about men, men will not watch movies about women.” Black Panther connected with millions of moviegoers, some of whom felt seen like never before and others who were white but still loved the film.
Greater diversity is crucial in all areas of media but Marvel is crucially different. The studio has created some of the biggest blockbusters of the last ten years. Each release is a seismic, must-see event. Marvel is in the position of creating images that will empower and influence the current generation of viewers as they follow in the footsteps of their favorite characters. Many people argue that viewers should not focus on the gender and race of fantasy characters. In 2019, though, representation is still essential.
— Dylan Itkin, Providence, RI
I am excited for captain Marvel, I know it is going to be a success and I am happy that little girls can go see it and see a strong female role model. What made me mostly happy was that when I heard the name Captain marvel I immediately thought it was a man. This shows breaking gender stereotypes in the film industry.
— Mariska, Masterman school, Philly
As with most things, of course women need more representation in the superhero field. I asked the 5 people in my house (not including me) who their favorite superhero was. The answer I got was what I expected; four people said that their favorite superhero was a man. Well then who was the only person who named a female superhero, you’re probably wondering? That person was my 6 year old cousin, who is a boy. Even when I gave him no context to my intentions, he still said that Wonder Woman was his favorite superhero …
Then, I started thinking: if young children are exposed to both male and female superheroes, maybe they could make their own decisions. It is not the child’s fault if they are not exposed to all genders of superheroes; it’s the producers’. There is dozens of superhero movies with male leads, and barely any female lead superhero movies. I think this is because superheroes are mostly considered a “boy activity”, so they think that a woman superhero will eliminate their prime audience. However, Wonder Woman made approximately 821 million dollars in the box office. There is no excuses anymore, and so I think Marvel and D.C. will continue to make more female lead productions, because success is proven.
— Rylee Porter, J.R Masterman, Philadelphia
The gender of a comic character does not matter but there has to be diversity. I do believe we need more strong-willed female superheroes because they can serve as an inspiration to young girls. Captain Marvel goes through a journey to find who she really is and is sending the message to young girls as well as an older woman. Her message is to have other women know that they are naturally strong and to not listen to those who say that they are “not strong enough” and that they do not “belong” in certain groups or areas of life.
— Mikhaela, Providence
With the upcoming movie, Captain Marvel and all the rumors of Black Widow going around it really does feel that change is happening in our world for the better. A change that makes young girls realize that they don’t have to wait for Superman when they can be their own hero.
— Audrey E., Hoggard High School, Wilmington NC
… But not just any female superheroes
In previous Marvel movies, women have been treated like accessories, a way to move the plot along for the purpose of a man. Black Widow, another female superhero, has never had a stand alone film, even though she’s been in the franchise for almost as long as Iron Man. In previous movies by Marvel, the women are often only love interests, and if they are not, they are over-sexualized. I think the success of Captain Marvel will show Marvel and other big companies, that people will watch female superheroes without them being sexualized or a love interest. Captain Marvel is my favorite superhero, let alone female superhero, and the reason behind that is that when I look at her, I see a woman that I can look up to in life for simply being who she is.
— Angela Froming, School of the Woods, Houston, TX
By over-saturating the super hero industry with lack luster, lazy and forgettable woman heroes, Marvel and other movie studios are making women super heroes look bad. I believe that woman heroes are a great addition to any super hero universe … And while I do not believe we have never seen a successful super hero movie that stars a woman, the majority of these films are overwhelmingly bad.
So how should we fix this? I do not propose that we give up this effort. It is much needed for female leadership in a country of mostly males in those positions. But there needs to be more dignity and thought that goes into these movies. The hero herself should be a more well developed, interesting character. The story that surrounds her should be less corny and cliche. And the time it takes to write these movies should be longer, in order to ensure that maximum thought and effort was poured into creating the most impactful and influential woman hero that they can.
— Ezra Lombardi
I don’t feel that the gender of a superhero matters at all. What I think really matters is what the powers of the hero are and the heroes role. Marvel in general has a lot of very powerful characters that are female. For example, in Avengers Infinity War Black Widow, Scarlet Witch and Okoye take down Proxima Midnight. All of the characters in this fight seen are women and have extraordinary roles. Black Widow is an assassin, Scarlet Witch can pretty much warp reality, Okoye is a courageous warrior who has been called one of the best ever in Wakanda and lastly Proxima Midnight has superhuman abilities like enhanced strength and agility. Even though they don’t currently have their own movies they play humongous roles in the MCU. I think that the Captain Marvel Movie will just push the female superhero roles movement over the edge. I think having a movie revolved all around a female superhero is great and I look forward to seeing it in the near future.
— Kenneth R., Masterman School, Philadelphia
I believe that Captain Marvel will be a great representation because it not only a superhero movie, but a movie about a female superhero that has an interesting story. That is so important because throughout history children look up to superheroes and little girls having a superhero who is a positive role model that’s like them. By having a movie with a female lead, it can inspire girls and show them what “female leadership looks like.”
— Lola Adebayo, Providence, RI
I think that as long as a character has an interesting backstory and an interesting personality they’re cool. The gender or race of a character shouldn’t matter. If a movie is only created to have minorities (females and non-white people) it would be boring. It would be tokenism, which is much more offensive than blatant sexism.
— Ami S, Masterman, Philadelphia
Marvel is in the business of entertainment, not politics.
I don’t understand why people take these movies and blast them to proportions that are way bigger than they should be. Comic book movies are made for entertainment, it doesn’t matter what kind of character gets the movie whether they are black, Hispanic, female, or even a Norse god. People will often see a movie like “Wonder Woman” and say that it was a really big leap for women when in reality DC was just making a movie for one of its popular characters, the movie said nothing about sexism and it didn’t even have that kind of undertone and I think that’s what made the movie good. People don’t go to the movies for politics they go to the movies to be entertained, it shouldn’t matter whether the movie has a female lead the only thing that should matter is that it’s entertaining.
— Wyatt Young, Hoggard High School
While it is an ideal to strive for, I believe that Marvel holds no moral responsibilities towards the compensatory representation of women in the pursuit of equal gender representation. The entire purpose of their films, and more generally, artistic media, is to create a meaningful experience and to invoke emotion, not to regurgitate the political climate of the current time.
As said within the article, there was a leak from a 2014 email, “from Isaac Perlmutter, the chairman of Marvel Entertainment, in which he disparaged female superhero films like ‘Supergirl’ (1984), ‘Catwoman’ (2004) and ‘Elektra’ (2005) for their poor box-office performances” (Itzkoff). Mr. Perlmutter’s remarks might have seemed distasteful, but the fact of the matter is that he was simply doing his job. As CEO of the Marvel company, he was looking out for the best interest of the corporation.
— Andrei Mistreanu, Hoggard High School, Wilmington, NC
These are businesses, not activist groups. What is the Avengers without Captain America? What is the Justice League without Superman? A superhero isn’t determined by their gender. The times were different when the majority of our beloved superhumans were created. Captain America was created in the 40’s. Captain Marvel was first introduced as the main protagonist in 1967. Marvel and DC shouldn’t be pressured to star a female just because they are a female. To quote Megamind, “heroes aren’t made, they’re born.” When a superhero is chosen for a movie, they should have proved their merit and have an interesting story, not just exist as one gender or the other. We do not NEED more female superheroes. We do not NEED Marvel or DC. We do NEED to let these independent companies choose the right person to wow us on the big screen.
— Brian Marks, John T Hoggard Wilmington NC
I never got why the gender of a superhero mattered. Why should it? So why do people make a big deal over gender? Whenever I watch a Marvel movie, I never think to myself “Hey that’s a female superhero” or “There needs to be more women”. I believe that we should have more female representation, but we’re going about this all wrong. One problem is the hype around the movie just because she’s a woman. Marvel is likely doing this just for money. They hold back on female representation so that when they finally release a movie focused on a woman, people go nuts and turn up just to support the character being a woman … Instead of focusing everything on female character, focus if the movie is good or not. It will do so much more for female representation in superhero movies to just make a good movie.
— Keegan Butler, Danvers MA
Women and girls have more important work to do.
To be frank, I think this is a topic that has been blown out of proportion. There are so many other ways that women (the ones in real life, not the imaginary ones in comics) are being discriminated against. Women make about 75 cents to a mans dollar and we as a whole country have problems respecting women. Even with the MeToo movement, catcalling and sexual harassment are still huge issues plaguing american women. Being represented in Superhero movies is at the bottom of my to-do list as a blooming feminist. First, let’s get equal pay and learn to respect women’s choices regarding their own bodies, among other things, then we can worry about how many female superhero movies there are in comparison to male.
— Angela Xhori, Julia R. Masterman, Philadelphia
The “ultimate superhero”
When I think about the “ultimate superhero,” I only think about my mother. Superheros are known to have honorable qualities. They are selfless people, and to me, so are mothers. Most women only give of themselves. They give birth, become mothers, raise families, etc. They in fact spend so much time taking care of others, they find no time taking care of themselves. Although mothers might not stop an oncoming villain, they do protect, and raise those of our future, which to me is no different.
My mother has always been there for me no matter how “moody” I get. I remember talking back to her constantly about cleaning my room and despite my hateful attitude she never gave up, she always showed grace. She pushed me to not only clean my room, but to take care of my things, which has later benefited me in many ways. She pushed me to reach out of my “villain” costume, and find my inner hero!
… Without mothers, we wouldn’t have a future. They raise and produce, our next generations. They make, and save lives everywhere, with or without a cape. They are the real hero’s.
— Isabella Clucas, Hoggard High school, Wilmington NC
__________Have You Ever Been Left Out?
“There they were, having fun without me,” college student Hallie Reed writes in “They Left Me Out, and I Saw It All,” an essay about the time she found out all her friends were hanging out without her. In this Student Opinion question, we asked students if they’ve ever had an experience like this and, if so, how they dealt with it.
After reading over 100 comments, we found out that Ms. Reed is not alone. Many students had a painful story to tell about being excluded, whether it was a memory from first grade or a slight that stung just last week. Below, their stories — of being left out, of doing the leaving out themselves, and of learning hard but useful lessons from the experience.
Statistics show how social media can even increase levels in anxiety and depression which in my opinion, is very accurate. It’s hard not to feel even a little disappointed when you’re scrolling and you see a picture of a group of people from your school, smiling left to right. Then you look around to see your lonely room and you can compare yourself to the people on the internet.
— Audrey E., Hoggard High School, Wilmington NC
My usual Friday nights are absolutely miserable. I usually spend it sitting on my bed reading or stuck in my bedroom fiddling with my robot. I spend these nights alone, kept company by my mind solely. But that’s not the miserable part. Being alone is something that I have become used to, and started to take a liking to. The bad part is when my parents ask what my friends are doing, and I am always forced to respond with “I don’t know.” In their voice and faces after I say that, I see, hear, and feel sadness, and it seeps into my mind. It makes me believe that I have no friends, and that I socially amount to nothing.
When someone else points out your loneliness, it makes it 100 times worse. Just recently, I was a part of a group conversation. A few jokes were made that I did not understand at all, and I seemed to be the only one not getting. I realized that they all had a group chat, all 13 of them. I immediately felt like in their minds, they didn’t really consider me as one of them, or at least not good enough to be on the chat. It made me feel worthless and unimportant. I have not, and do not plan on, making a comment, because what if they said no? Or worse, said yes with hesitation? The even slight possibility of social humiliation is enough for me to say nothing.
— Albert, Wilhelmy
When you tell your friends an idea of having a bonfire in the summer, suddenly your friends had gone ghost, then you watch your friends on social media at the bonfire, without you. It will make you have an internal feeling of not having anyone, isolation, abandonment. Leaving you to assume that you are not good enough to hang with the crew, trying to pretend like you are not bothered by the isolation. The feeling of isolation and abandonment will make you think about walking right out of their lives all from betrayal.
— Darnasia Shields, Lakewood,OH.
“Bye Marta, Chiara and Ali, I hope you guys have a great weekend.”
These three girls were what I considered best friends for most of my life. ”Come on girls, we are going to be late to get parking space at the beach.” My grandpa drove us to the beach on Friday afternoons and quickly, this became our tradition. When the day of his passing came around, they were the first ones there to visit me at the hospital.From that point on, I knew friendship couldn’t get better than this.I was walking down the carline opening the door to my moms car, I turned around to realize that Marta’s car had two other people in it, even though she had told me her weekend was going to be a “girls trip” with her sister Gaia, at a beach house. I was convinced that it was Gaia’s friends last minute deciding to go on the beach trip. I soon realized I was too blinded by the “best friend promises.” I checked instagram as a new post appeared on my feed. “Wouldn’t want to hang out with any other people.”-Marta. This quote was captioned under a picture of the beach spot my grandfather always brought all three of us to. My heart shattered in a million pieces because I felt like I lost my three best friends. They ruined the only place left that reminded me of my grandfather. We all lost a part of ourselves that day.
— Michelle Gargagliano, Hoggard High School, Wilmington, NC
Recently, I came to school and met my friends as usual. It was a Monday, and I thought it had been a normal weekend, with no big plans or parties, but I was wrong. My friend came up to me, showing me a video of her and some of our other friends. “Look,” She said, “We went bowling on Saturday. It was so much fun!” I looked at the video, laughed, and tried to shrug it off. It didn’t work. I kept thinking about it, wondering why I wasn’t invited. I knew I shouldn’t dwell on it, but I couldn’t let it go. I felt that short moment of sadness that makes you feel inferior. I know I have been left out before, and I know I will be many more times in my life. I only hope I will learn to get over it, and cherish having friends, even if I don’t spend every weekend with them.
— Emily Curtis, Hoggard High School, NC
7th grade I thought I had found my people, I felt at home … almost like at peace. All was fine for a while, we’d talk all the time, do everything together, but at school only. It never occurred to me that they never invited me to do anything out of school; I had an odd feeling in the back of my mind, suspecting it, but thought nothing of it. Fast forward maybe a couple months into the school year, one of the girls in my friend group has a big birthday party each year, and invites everyone … except me. I never would’ve known either, had it not been for Snapchat stories depicting my so called friends having a great time without me. Immediately, I ditched them for other acquaintances I had made. They then became my close friends, who actually valued me as a friend. Although it really hurt, I’m glad I had this experience with these awful girls. It made me get a good look on society, people being mean for the pure fun of it … what are you gaining? I have bad social anxiety because of this experience, it makes keeping relationships hard. But, it’s shaped me into a good soul. Being the pity friend enables you to be a wonderful friend to people who are worth it.
— Alexandra Pechlivanidis, Hoggard High School
I remember one night during my junior year of high school, I was having a little bit of a depressive episode. I tried to text my best friend since I usually talk to her to distract myself or to ask for advice. She didn’t answer my text right away which was fine, so I opened Snapchat and started swiping through people’s stories. On her story was a picture of her, her boyfriend, and all of our friends hanging out together at my ex boyfriend’s house for our friend group’s annual badminton tournament. I had participated the last few years and nothing bad happened between us at all so I didn’t know why I wasn’t being included.
I ignored it for a while. I pretended that I was okay with being cut out of our friend group. I kept this up for a while until I heard them making plans in front of me like I wasn’t even there.For a while, I wandered around on the outside of that friend group before leaving it completely.
— Emma Janofsky, NJ
It happened actually two weeks ago. I was all by myself playing solos on Fortnite. I saw my friends list and seeing a lot of people in my friend’s list. I noticed that they are all in squads. I was all by myself. Until my friend, Amit, join my party. I was so happy until he told me, he had to leave for his girlfriend. I was by myself for the rest of the night. I just can’t believe it, and I thought to myself why am I so sad. I waited for Amit to join. When he finally did, he did squads with someone else. I was devastated, and my heart shattered through sadness.
— Andy Lee, Northbrook
Back when I was in first grade, I was left out by EVERYBODY, and this is no exaggeration. Apparently, in the first week of my first grade year, there were uncanny rumors spreading about me. Due to this, the kids avoided me like I was a cockroach. When there was an upcoming party, they would talk about it excitedly except for me. When the kids were playing soccer, I would have to force my way into the game just to touch the ball. It was never a good experience, and I wonder even now what I could have done to avoid it. I tried to ignore it, trying to believe that the kids would stop with their nonsense, but in the end, the rumors got worse and worse while the kids would become more distant towards me. The only choice I had was to tell my parents and teachers so that everything is solved.
Although it did, it took the kids around 3 months before they finally started accepting me.
— June Lee, Glenbrook North High School
I do kind of feel like I’m being left out of my friend group on a daily basis though. It’s a common recurrence that I am ignored or talked over when hanging out with my friends. I’m not sure if I’m just not talking loud enough or if they don’t care enough to listen to what I have to say. I’m definitely not exaggerating when I say it happens everyday, several times a day. It’s gotten to the point that whenever I do talk and I’m talked over or ignored by said friends, they apologize and allow me to say what I was trying to say. They still haven’t stopped interrupting or talking over me, but I think they’re trying? I don’t know.
— Hope, FL
There was time in my life where I asked my friends if they wanted to come to my birthday party each one of them said they couldn’t come because there were going out of town, and I thought to myself it’s not a big deal right? 4 days have passed and today is my birthday and I was turning 11. I went on my Instagram and I saw a post of my friends and I wasn’t in the post. The picture was all of the at one of my friends party. I went into my room and started to cry and it really did hurt really bad to be left out. My tears wouldn’t stop and I was just sad and I cried for hours and eventually I went to sleep. My reaction to when I saw the post I just didn’t know what to do and when the day they told me they couldn’t go I just told my mom to cancel the party. I was really upset about it because I never felt this way before. Later on that day I just kept thinking and thinking about and I still think about still today.Then the next day came and it was Monday and I saw all of my friends hanging out so I walked up to them and said How come you guys didn’t come to my birthday party? They all said they were sick and I said I thought you guys were out of town.So I just told them I know you guys hang out together and if you guys don’t want to be my friends anymore or don’t want to hang out just tell me instead of lying to me.
— Raelene, California
A couple years back, I was extremely introverted. An introvert is a person who gets tired from social interactions, or just a follower. I wasn’t very confident, or strong. I was basically a pushover. My two close “friends” had left to another school, but there were moments where I felt left out of the conversation or just ignored when we hung out. After they had left to a different middle school, I felt suddenly lost. I found a different group of people, but the leader kept leaving me, and the others followed suit. I found the better side of her, and we became close friends. The entire experience made me stronger as a person, and even still, there are incidents where I am still left out.Most of the time, I get this sick feeling whenever I am left out. I start to wonder if I was the problem and not my friends. If maybe, they were doing this because I had said something to them, or been mean. I still feel like this almost every day. It is hard to shake off.
— Rose Candelaria, Oak Grove Elementary School
One really bad thing I do is when I am left out, I should put my phone down and not pay attention to those people, but instead I stay on it and kind of stalk those peoples social medias so I know exactly what I missed out on. I know I shouldn’t do that and it just makes me more upset about it but I still do it.
— Maddie Montanari, Mass.
In the past six months, I felt farther away from my friends than ever. There became a time where instead of hanging at the beach, they wanted spend their time abusing substances and leaving me behind. At first I just let it be, but once it started affecting our other friends, I decided to call them out on it. It ruined everything. The distance between us became greater and I was left all alone. These girls had always been my best friends but now I don’t think it can ever return to the way it was.
— Abigail Billings, Hoggard High School, Wilmington, NC
It’s not always what it seems.
I became super close with two friends during my first year at a new school. We spent numerous weekends together. We spent holidays together. We spent breaks together. We formed this super close group with each other, and I had never imagined a falling out as a possibility. We began to grow, and we grew in different ways. I became very detached from them. I slowly started hanging out with others and isolating myself from them. At the time I did not think anything of it. They started posting on social media without me, which caused my perspective quickly changed. I grew angry with them. Why were they excluding me? Did I not get the invite? I questioned their every move. I felt like a detective, I was trying to find the missing clue. I slowly realized what the missing piece was: myself. It became apparent that I was the one causing the separation. I was the one turning down the invitation. I was the one not responding to the texts. I was the problem. I decided to try to become a better friend. I wanted to be included again, but as it turns out, I did not want to be included. The time apart caused our friendship to falter. It was as if I did not know them anymore. When we get excluded from things, we need to look at it as an opportunity to examine ourselves, or we can grow and move on.
— Tyler Biddulph, Lakewood
When I was about 12 years old, one of my close friends had thrown a birthday party, without inviting me. seeing all my close friends having what seemed to be the time of their lives, over a snapchat story, gave me immense anxiety. I started thinking that it was my own fault that I didn’t get an invite. when later I had come to find out that the girls parents had got my mailing address wrong when they sent the invitation. I had created this load of anxiety on myself for no reason. I had questioned myself, instead of questioning the source of my anxiety: my close friend.
— Isabella Clucas, Hoggard High school, Wilmington NC
One of the most memorable moments of my ‘left-outness’ actually did not occur because of something I saw on social media, but literally right in front of my face. Two of my best-friends were making plans together, and I wasn’t included. Thinking about it now, I’ve realized they didn’t invite me because of me, it’s that they didn’t have another ticket to the baseball game, and I don’t even enjoy watching baseball that much. Even though I’ve realized this now, in the moment, I felt terrible honestly. It made me feel sad, and angry, and confused, and as the passive aggressive and non confrontational person I am, it resulted in me swearing them off in my head and then proceeding to call my mom to pick me up.
— Sara Desrocher, Massachusetts
Being left out can be one of the worst feelings to experience. I have been left out numerous of times like Ms. Reed. A few times it has been my own fault for denying the invitation but that was due to my anxiety holding me back and preventing me from partaking in the activity. But at times I hoped that I received the text “Hey want to hang out today?” Instead I had to find out a different way. I used to open snapchat and see videos of the both of them laughing together either in the car, at the pool, trying on dresses on or just eating together. One day I confronted them about it and the words “we didn’t think you’d want to come” hurt more than I expected it to.
— Arendy, Providence
I’ve been the one doing the leaving out.
Two summers ago I took a trip to New York and invited two of my closest friends to join me. Trust me if I could have taken more I would have because it killed me knowing I was leaving some of my friends out, but the decision had to be made. Sometimes you just can’t invite everyone, and it hurts not only the other person, but you. I felt guilty in a sense that I let my friends down. I have the most amazing friends, but our only problem is that there are so many of us and it’s a challenge taking everyone everywhere.
— Gracie Sistrunk, Hoggard High School, Wilmington, NC
When I need to exclude people I feel really bad about it. Personally, I like to take the honest approach and tell them the truth. “I’m sorry Dylan, but my mom said I can only have a few people over.” “Sorry Kate, I think just the guys are gonna hang tonight.” I know that it stinks when people say that you can’t go, but it is so much better than getting lied to. When someone tells you that you’re not invited somewhere you can get over that relatively quickly, but when you get lied to and excluded then you lose the ability to fully trust your friends. That’s the real killer.
— Mike Mahoney, MA
This summer, when I went to 6 Flags New England with my friends for my birthday, my parents had bought 15 tickets, and so I had to exclude some people from coming, and boy did I feel bad for those who I didn’t invite. It was the first time that I had ever spearheaded an even that a group of us were hanging out and I did not really understand how bad it felt to not invite others. Since then, I have become much more lenient to those who don’t invite me to events, because I realize that it isn’t something personal against me, it could be as simple as it skipped their mind, or they weren’t allowed to invite many people. Covering it up by saying they can’t hang out I also find understandable. It can be hard to tell someone to their face that they aren’t invited to something.
— Keegan Butler, Danvers
The sad thing is I’ve been on the opposite side of the story sadly, multiple times. I’m sure you’ve done it without even thinking. Birthday parties, trips, or even just going out to brunch. I didn’t care though, I didn’t want this girl to come to my party. She was in my group at school, but not outside of school. We excluded her a lot. It didn’t even phase me until I was put into that situation. I was the one getting left out now. I felt what the girl felt pretty much every weekend. I suggest having many friend groups, especially if you’re in high school, your “friends” drop like flies then. Keep a positive mind open and make new friends. That’s what I did and now I have multiple friend groups and have many chances to hang out with them.
— Piper Gallen, Hoggard Highschool, NC
On my 15th birthday I invited three girls from school over to celebrate and spend the night. We had volleyball the next morning, so it made sense just to keep it easy and invite them. One of my friends from school was very upset she was not invited, and she was very short with me that day. I texted her and explained my reasoning for only inviting those few. She eventually understood. I don’t really have birthday parties anymore; someone always gets left out.
— Olivia Britt, Hoggard High School, Wilmington, NC
Some positives came out of the experience for me.
Being lonely is a choice. Life, for anyone, is an endless opportunity of everything and anything. The only thing stopping you is you, you limit yourself, with a positive look and good spirits you can go do anything, in the countless opportunities in life. If you cry and complain about the one you messed, you will miss even more by not moving on.
— Cormac, Lakewood
Feeling left out not only has its negatives, but also positives. It’s hard to swallow, but in some cases feeling this way can help you structure your future. Everyone has been left out at least once in their life and would be lying if said otherwise. It is a feeling one hates to feel, but is portrayed differently to me. I have realized quality over quantity within friends is crucial. The more fake people you surround yourself with, the more difficult situations you put yourself in.
— Conor FitzGerald, Danvers
… I realized everyone goes through this feeling of being left out, even the ones who are doing the leaving out. Therefore very recently I have moved past my fear of being left out and not having friends. Sometimes you just have to open your eyes and realize the people who really are there for you and the ones who aren’t and just move on.
— Tamsie Black, Hoggard High School
it always seems more fun when you aren’t there. This is always a crushing feeling to know that you are missing out on possible memories. The next time you see your friends is also odd, but it is important to remain normal about it. If you try to address the situation, it becomes more weird, and then they definitely won’t invite you next time. But most of all, it is important to remember that there will be a next time. There will always be another chance to hang out with friends and make memories. Even if it isn’t with the same group that once left you out.
— Ezra, Lombardi
I used to feel upset and like I was missing out when I saw what others were doing on social media. How could someone not feel left out when everyone else is having the time of their lives? But when I would go to things, I realized people put on an act for the camera and it wasn’t as fun as the post made it seem. I started to grow out of being upset over every little event that I didn’t go to. I realized it is totally fine to not attend every party and that everything is not as it seems on social media. Mixing the lack of reality portrayed on social media and being an overdramatic sensitive teen, fear of missing out is almost impossible to not experience.
— Sommerlyn Jones, Massachusetts
Freshman year went by and I thought that I would never find genuine friends that would actually want to hang out with me. Eventually I connected with another person from that same middle school group that felt the same way I felt. I also got back in touch with an old friend from elementary school. Those shared feelings and old bonds sparked a flame between us and our friendship blossomed. The tail end of sophomore year and the majority of my junior year has been the best, friends-wise. I went through some feelings of being left out but I waited and pushed through and it paid off. In the end, I’m almost happy that I was left out because it forced me to cut some people out of my life and discover my true friends.
— Madison Prideaux, Boston, Mass.
In reality most of the time they are just hanging around being bored and someone says “its picture time.” That’s when everybody gets up makes it look like they are having fun, and then when picture time is over everyone goes back to being bored.
— Sidney Holman, Northbrook, IL
After years of looking on instagram and seeing them hanging out together, and posting it, I knew I had to stop it. I began by deleting instagram, I knew that I didn’t love the app enough to get hurt every time I opened it. I talked to my mom, who I grew distant from during my time of being hurt and confused. I made new friends and new connections. Now, I’m happy, although I don’t have instagram, I can still have fun and hang out with people who I know will not hurt me.
— Izzy, California
Shortly after getting rid of my social media accounts a few years back, I began to realize just how big a role it played in that. In my opinion I think a good remedy to this awful feeling is simply cutting out social media. If you think about it, you don’t start to feel bad until you actually see the post indicating you were left out. Now I know this isn’t an option for some people, so if you just can’t part with your accounts then maybe spare some other people that no good feeling. By this I mean don’t post a picture every time you go out, it’s a simple solution and could easily decrease the number of people who feel left out.
— Mia Escalera, Hoggard high school, Wilmington NC
__________What Would the Home of Your Dreams Look Like?
For our Picture Prompt, “Dream Home,” we asked students to describe the home of their dreams in as much detail as possible. And, boy, did they deliver. From the extravagant to the humble, students let their imaginations run wild writing about the seven-story mansions, log cabins, cozy cottages and beach houses they hope to one day call “home.”
My home itself would be a modest 7 floors. The bottom floor would be for the swimming pool and lounge area. The second floor would house any guests and would have at least 5 bedrooms. The third floor would be for a basketball court, and the fourth for a football field. The fifth floor would be a trampoline park and a movie theater. The sixth floor would have my master bedroom and the 7th floor would be the aquarium.
— Ezra Lombardi
… I love and have an absolute passion for music. I’d have one room for just a grand piano, guitar, trumpet, and saxophone - the instruments I play already - and one for every other instrument known to man. Instead of watching television when I had nothing to do I could just pick up a bassoon and stream tutorials. Across the hall from the these two rooms would be my recording studio. This is where I’d record albums that I composed, played all the parts, and sang.
— Mike Mahoney, MA
In the backyard there would also be soccer goals, basketball hoops and a volleyball net maybe even a tennis court somewhere. I would have a room with things like a ping pong table and a pool table and another room kind of like a movie room but it would also have all of my video games.
— Fernando R., Providence
Underneath the house there will be my very own bat cave where I can house all of my cars and helicopters. The main house will have an indoor pool as well as a massive central fireplace and cozy bunk rooms. There will also be a bowling alley and movie theater in the main house. The tree house that will be nestled in the trees 50 feet above my house will contain the master bedroom. This room will have stunning views of the Colorado mountains and wilderness.
— Declan Quinn, Danvers MA
The kitchen would probably be one of the best areas of the house. It would contain sundae bars along with aisles and aisles of candy. In addition to this, a personal chef-robot would be working, ready to cook up any meal at any time.
— Gabriela Ferullo, Danvers, Massachusetts
I would never want a huge house because it’d feel to empty. However, I definitely want a house large enough to accommodate at least two kids, nicely, and with a few extra rooms for like a game room, a play room, a book room and a homework room. Also, I love cooking so the house will have to have a nicely sized kitchen. Nothing excessive though. Relatively simple is what I’m thinking.
— Olivia Brooklynn, Providence
My dream house is nothing special. It isn’t some billion dollar mansion with an ocean view. It isn’t some trendy contemporary apartment filled with expensive furniture and decoration. My dream house is something that feels like home. I want it to be a place of comfort; I don’t want it to be a place where its sole purpose is to show off its luxuries or expense.
— Sommerlyn Jones, Massachusetts
My dream home would be somewhere in the suburbs, a very similar environment to where I live now. I want a big bedroom with a loft-style double bed, a desk underneath, walls full of art, and plenty of fairy lights. I want my bedroom to feel comforting, and be a place I can go to get away from the outside world and relax.
— Madison Prideaux, Boston, Massachusetts
If I had the ability to have my dream home, I think the 10 year old in me would come out and I’d have water slides everywhere! It would definitely be big and somewhere exotic, and near an ocean that’s turquoise so I could overlook it whenever I’d want. And I want to be able to run outside and in the next minute, have my feet buried in warm sand. But I also want a garden and a real backyard with grass so everyone can enjoy themselves.
— Sarah Khan, Providence, RI
I would love to live on the beach overlooking a nice private beach. I would have a lot of windows, letting a lot of sun come in. I want my house to feel spacious, but not to the point of feeling too empty. I would want an infinity pool overlooking the beach and a lit up hot tub for the nighttime.
— Conor FitzGerald, Danvers
I want to have a huge yard. I want a cozy front yard with tons of plants leading the way up to the doorway and in my backyard I would want a pool and enough room to have a makeshift volleyball net put up. If I could, I would also want an above ground hot tub put on my porch. I would want a hand built fireplace outside in the backyard for late summer nights.
— Maddie Montanari, MA
I would want my house to have both a front and back porch, as well as a large backyard, possibly with a jacuzzi. I would want to have a lot of windows all throughout the house, and skylight windows as well, so as much sunlight could come in as possible. I would want to fill the house with as many plants as possible, ones hanging down from the ceiling, and potted plants on the floor. A garden outside, filled with wildflowers, a bird bath, and bird seed would also be nice, because I like to be able to look out my windows and see birds around.
— Allison, MA
Location, location, location
My dream house would be a replica of my self-designed minecraft home. Naturally, the house would have to be located on the top of a mountain. This location would provide protection from my enemies and allow me to have abundant resources when I choose to go mining.
— Richard Canova, Danvers, Massachusetts
My dream home, though I love New England, would be located right on a beautiful beach in Malibu, California. Of course, the beach I would live on would have to have amazing waves 24/7, so I could walk down to my surfboard hut, choose one of my 20 surfboards, and get to shredding.
— Dan Rossitto, Danvers, MA
Ideally I would be living in Georgia or South Carolina, wherever is warmer. I would have a nice, two story house on a big plot of land, where I would also have a bunch of animals. Although I would have a full time job, I would still like to take care of my cows, horses, rabbits, goats, chickens, and pigs.
— Caitlyn Pellerin, Danvers, MA
When I imagine my dream home now, it would be something that’s a happy place for me, but also the environment. First of all, it would definitely be somewhere very serene and tranquil, maybe near a meadow, a river, a mountain; I heard Montana is really pretty, so maybe there? Where ever my home is, I would want it to be surrounded by nature.
— Sara Desrocher, MassachusettsB:
【自】【琴】【在】【第】【二】【日】【清】【晨】【醒】【了】【过】【来】，【这】【一】【夜】【困】【倦】，【她】【将】【那】【个】【梦】【里】【后】【来】【的】【那】【些】【事】【都】【补】【齐】【了】，【那】【些】【现】【实】【里】【贺】【南】【谖】【都】【不】【知】【道】【的】【后】【来】。 【贺】【南】【谖】【一】【直】【守】【着】【自】【琴】，【看】【到】【自】【琴】【醒】【来】【才】【松】【了】【一】【口】【气】。 “【老】【婆】，【你】【醒】【啦】，【嫂】【子】【给】【你】【炖】【了】【一】【些】【汤】【水】，【现】【在】【还】【温】【着】，【我】【给】【你】【盛】【一】【些】。” 【盛】【好】【后】【贺】【南】【谖】【将】【自】【琴】【扶】【了】【起】【来】，【又】【将】【汤】【匙】【递】【到】【自】【琴】【嘴】
“【帮】【我】【收】【拾】【东】【西】【吧】，【我】【正】【好】【准】【备】【回】【家】【了】。” 【她】【确】【实】【准】【备】【回】【家】，【之】【前】【已】【经】【没】【课】【了】【她】【留】【在】【学】【校】【没】【回】【老】【家】【是】【因】【为】【想】【和】【沈】【凌】【玩】，【可】【现】【在】【两】【人】【都】【分】【手】【了】，【还】【玩】【什】【么】【玩】，【她】【正】【好】【可】【以】【借】【此】【找】【到】【借】【口】【避】【开】【他】。 【她】【的】【东】【西】【其】【实】【早】【就】【在】【其】【他】【两】【位】【室】【友】【离】【开】【时】【整】【理】【过】【一】【遍】【了】，【两】【大】【箱】【子】【行】【李】，【床】【上】【的】【床】【上】【用】【品】【那】【些】【她】【都】【不】【准】【备】【要】【了】，【那】
【沾】【了】【一】【整】【身】【的】【烟】【火】【气】【息】【也】【掩】【盖】【不】【住】【孟】【一】【然】【身】【上】【的】【仙】【气】。 【炸】【过】【丸】【子】【的】【孟】【一】【然】【在】【秦】【松】【的】【家】【里】【洗】【了】【个】【澡】，【顺】【便】【接】【过】【了】【一】【件】【秦】【松】【还】【从】【未】【开】【封】【的】【新】【衬】【衫】。 【秦】【松】【这】【顿】【饭】【的】【成】【本】【可】【远】【远】【超】【过】【去】【天】【朝】【人】【在】【唐】【人】【街】【开】【的】【中】【餐】【馆】，【可】【是】【有】【钱】【难】【买】【他】【乐】【意】【啊】，【而】【且】【能】【让】【他】【觉】【得】【这】【顿】【饭】【吃】【的】【心】【有】【愧】【疚】【感】【的】【人】【并】【不】【多】。 【他】【的】【家】【里】【没】【有】【电】【饭】今天买马买什么“【厉】【昱】【修】？”【季】【娆】【出】【声】【喊】【厉】【昱】【修】【的】【名】【字】，【声】【音】【不】【大】，【清】【清】【冷】【冷】【的】【三】【个】【字】，【不】【带】【任】【何】【感】【情】。 【虽】【然】【声】【音】【不】【大】，【但】【是】【很】【有】【辨】【识】【度】。 【厉】【昱】【修】【在】【季】【大】【川】【刺】【耳】【的】【叫】【骂】【声】【中】，【清】【晰】【的】，【一】【字】【不】【落】【地】【听】【到】【了】【季】【娆】【的】【声】【音】。 【小】【姑】【娘】【的】【声】【音】【跟】【在】【学】【校】【里】【的】【时】【候】【有】【点】【不】【一】【样】，【带】【了】【一】【丝】【沙】【哑】、【不】【敢】【置】【信】【和】【轻】【颤】。 【厉】【昱】【修】【轮】【起】【的】【拳】
【这】【已】【经】【是】【方】【修】【宜】【继】【承】【王】【位】【后】【的】【第】【六】【年】【了】，【老】【国】【君】【和】【王】【后】【早】【就】【不】【问】【政】【事】，【一】【心】【的】【只】【侍】【弄】【孙】【儿】。 【事】【实】【上】，【国】【事】【家】【事】【都】【很】【安】【定】，【也】【的】【确】【没】【什】【么】【需】【要】【老】【国】【君】【和】【王】【后】【操】【心】【的】【了】。 【国】【事】【上】，【世】【代】【与】【钧】【宇】【国】【为】【敌】【的】【荀】【国】，【也】【在】【数】【年】【前】【与】【方】【修】【宜】【签】【订】【了】【盟】【约】，【相】【约】【两】【国】【和】【平】【共】【处】，【杜】【绝】【交】【兵】【作】【战】，【这】【些】【年】【来】，【不】【论】【是】【荀】【国】【国】【君】【贺】【炎】
【最】【佳】【女】【配】【颁】【奖】【结】【束】，【林】【浅】【下】【去】【的】【时】【候】【导】【演】【欣】【慰】【的】【侧】【头】【看】【着】【林】【浅】。 “【从】【你】【提】【名】【的】【时】【候】【我】【就】【知】【道】【肯】【定】【是】【你】。” 【林】【浅】【对】【角】【色】【的】【演】【绎】【是】【他】【在】【这】【部】【电】【影】【里】【最】【满】【意】【的】【一】【次】。 【终】【于】【韩】【珊】【能】【拿】【到】【最】【佳】【女】【主】【倒】【是】【挺】【让】【他】【意】【外】【的】。 【倒】【不】【是】【因】【为】【韩】【珊】【的】【演】【技】，【而】【是】【因】【为】【盛】【昕】【心】【也】【被】【提】【名】【了】。 【盛】【昕】【心】【的】【演】【技】【也】【很】【在】【线】，【那】【部】【电】