• Few or No Friends

Having no friends in a small high school

Published: February 23, 2016 | Last Updated: February 25, 2016 By | 3 Replies Continue Reading
A tenth-grader loses her friends in a small high school.



I am a 15-year-old girl in tenth grade. I am in a pretty small school and there are probably around 50 girls in my grade. I have been really close to a couple of people, we were really good friends, and we hung out all the time. Then they started getting into drugs and stuff and I told I didn’t want to do those kinds of things. A couple days later they just stopped talking to me.

And I have tried making other friends. I really did, but no one wants to be friends with me. I don’t know why. I try to be nice to other girls and talk to them but they just don’t like to listen and try to end the conversation really fast so they can get back to their friends.

I just want to understand why people don’t like me.

Signed, Confused High-Schooler


Hi Confused High-Schooler,

It can be challenging to attend a small school where there are fewer opportunities to make new friends. Also it sounds like many people in your grade belong to cliques, which unfortunately, is quite common in middle and high school.

You have shown you have a strong moral compass and good self-esteem by not succumbing to the peer pressure to use drugs and do things you really don’t want to do. Unfortunately, many young people compromise their values to fit in.

Since it can be tough to find another group, try to find one potential new friend at a time. Pick out someone in one of your classes who seems like the kind of person you would want to be friends with. Perhaps, you could ask this person to do something outside of school or if they want to do something with you during lunch or a free period. If that doesn’t work out, try another person.

If you have time on your hands at school, either at lunch or during breaks, you could also see if there is some way you can assist a teacher or someone in the office.

Of course, continue to be friendly and nice. Make a special effort not to come across too needy and I suspect you’ll have at least one new friend before the end of the school year.

Hope this helps.

My best, Irene

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Comments (3)

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  1. Cher says:

    You remind me of myself when I was in high school. All my friends started to do drugs, drink and go to 21+ clubs with fake ID’s and I decided that I didn’t want to join because it went against my values. If they are avoiding you, that’s for the better because those friends I knew who did drugs, drank, party, had sex way too young all ruined their futures with drunk driving crashes, teenage pregnancies, drug over-dose and death and all that. You know who you are and what you want, you have a clearer understanding of your values and they don’t. They do these things because they are confused about themselves and their insecurities are driving them towards peer-pressure. Remember this, humans are very emotional creatures, sometimes their own weakness can make them do nasty things to others, so when that happens, remember who you are and to always trust your own intuitions. If someone tries to hurt you, don’t give them the satisfaction of knowing they succeeded, be the better person and walk away. Sometimes you find great friends in unexpected places, so don’t try too hard and don’t be too dependent on others, because in the end, only you can really be your own best friend. If you want to strengthen your understanding of others or yourself, you could always check out books or articles on psychology. They could prepare you in making better decisions with your social life, but some things have to be learned the hard way so always trust your instincts and intuitions and pay attention to the lesson life is trying to teach you because The best lessons in life are the ones taught by experience. As someone who is in their 20’s and has been through all kinds of sh!t, these are all the things I wish I could tell my 15-year old self.

  2. Lisa says:

    Dear confused High Schooler, One thing is for sure you are NOT confused, you just have what the others do not, strong sense of values, morals, and self worth.
    Please do not ever cave in to people like this just to be liked. You will find friends, the kind that will not judge or criticize you for not wanting to do drugs. Stay strong, continue to be nice and kind to others. I know that being in a small school doesn’t give you the large pick of friends as a larger school but, even the larger schools have drug users just more of them. Keep doing what you are doing and in time things will turn around for you. Maybe you could join a group outside of school which would give you the chance to be with people who don’t go to your school and aren’t swayed by the negative behaviors and words of others. I wish you the best.

  3. Amy F says:

    Good for you for standing up to people who want wanted you to do drugs. That is not an easy thing and it tells me you are a strong young woman. Small schools are tough because you gave a smaller pool of potential friends.
    Most friendships start off as acquaintances and take a little time to develop, so instead of trying to make friends and having all that pressure, try focusing on getting to know people better. People generally love to talk about themselves, so ask open ended questions that show interest. These are questions that require more than a yes or no answer. “What did you do last weekend” vs “Did you have a good weekend.” Be sensitive that people do have other friends but could be open to new ones who fit into their lives. Be a good listener and supportive, without seeming overeager.
    Take advantage of any opportunities you can to meet like minded people. Join clubs or sports. Think of group projects as a way to get to know people better and show you’re a good potential friend, I wouldn’t suggest avoiding lunch or study hall by helping teachers, because that can isolate you from peers and you might lose opportunities to know people better.
    Like Irene said, be friendly to everyone. Smile and make eye contact.
    Good luck.

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