Discrimination. I give up.
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Discrimination. I give up.

This is a discussion on Discrimination. I give up. within the School forums, part of the Life's Other Challenges category; Words cannot describe how frustrated I am with this. I suffer from severe social anxiety and depression. My anxiety significantly ...

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Old 01-22-17, 06:00 PM   #1
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Default Discrimination. I give up.

Words cannot describe how frustrated I am with this. I suffer from severe social anxiety and depression. My anxiety significantly impairs my functioning, to the point where I cannot do oral presentations or group work. I have the necessary medical documentation to prove that this is a significant issue for me. Yet all of the universities/colleges I have attended have shown a complete lack of willingness to accommodate me for this. Their only response involves offering me counseling at the school and access to useless social groups and "safe spaces." WHAT THE FUCK IS THAT SUPPOSED TO DO FOR ME?

Seriously, I am so fed up of this shit. The disability advisors and counselors are completely useless and have a "man up" attitude about everything. Since I look fine and perform well academically, nothing I say matters to them. It honestly seems like they're actively trying to make my life hell at this point. I was finally granted "alternatives to presentations" (an accommodation that didn't previously exist) after months of fighting for it, but there's a catch: my specific accommodations will be determined at the discretion of the professor/instructor. Essentially that means if they say "too bad", I have to just take a zero. In one of my mandatory courses, the presentation component is worth 35% of my final grade. In another (which I'm not taking yet) it is worth 70%. Tell me how I'm supposed to possibly succeed in this situation.

I cannot believe that discrimination at this level is still so common. Just goes to show that all the mental health initiatives in this country are a fucking joke. I blame the mental health system itself for it's refusal to acknowledge that sometimes mental issues are chronic and incurable. No, therapy is NOT a fix! It has never worked for me and it probably never will.

If I'm struggling this much with the education system, how could I possibly survive in the real world? I don't stand a chance. If society doesn't have a cure or solution, then fine. I accept that. But I will not accept a life of homelessness and endless suffering for it, nor am I okay with being labelled a leech for using their (garbage) welfare programs. Fuck that shit. The least they could do is provide people like me the option of opting out of life. I want the right to die.
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Old 02-09-17, 08:52 PM   #2
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Wow, I really sympathize with you. I understand completely what it's like not to be able to give presentations. I get so freaking anxious over them, it's unhealthy. It also takes me so much energy to make on, probably 5x the amount a normal student would need. And they are just straight up humiliating. My face turns bright red and my voice shakes... blah. At the end of my fall semester in 2015, I had 3 (or was it 4? idk) presentations in the same week, every day. And it wasn't just the presentation.. we had to write a paper and make a corresponding presentation. I just didn't have the time for all of it. Why should we have to do both? Since when is writing a paper not enough?

Anyway, I remember giving the first one (it was an honors program course, just some random unnecessary 1 credit class) and the two people in front of me took too long so I had to rush through mine and everyone in that class was just so rude to me it was horrendous. We had to E-mail the professor how we think we did after, and I honestly said I'm bad a giving presentations but this one was especially bad because I felt rushed. She was also a prick to me, basically said if I can't present something that simple to the class why would I be able to present an honors project. So I skipped my last 2 presentations that week because I just felt so discouraged. That was around the beginning of my depression, too. I dropped the honors program shortly after that. There was no incentive other than a special gown at graduation, a trade-off for loads of unnecessary, added stress.

I am sorry you have to go through that. I've never tried to ask my school about not having to give presentations. If I don't feel up to it I just skip it :/ Group work is just as bad though (and usually ends in a presentation, too). You can just never count on the other person. Hell, I also really hate class participation grades because I hate talking in class period.

Mental health initiatives here are really bad. It's like it's not okay for life to happen. What kinds of things have you tried to help with presenting?

You will survive in the real world. There are plenty of jobs that don't require you to present anything. Working with others is important, but you can find jobs where the setting isn't as much pressure at a school so it wouldn't be as bad. Or, depending on what you do, you could freelance something or be self-employed or work from home.

I'm going to throw a TED talk your way right now, maybe you think it's lame, maybe you've seen it: https://www.ted.com/talks/amy_cuddy_...es_who_you_are

It's not too much about the topic but it really helped me. I've always felt like I wasn't supposed to be here, like I was never good enough. It was nice to hear that come from someone else's mouth.

There is also a book called "Quiet" by Susan Cain, which is worth a read.
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Old 02-11-17, 12:33 AM   #3
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Wow, I really sympathize with you. I understand completely what it's like not to be able to give presentations. I get so freaking anxious over them, it's unhealthy. It also takes me so much energy to make on, probably 5x the amount a normal student would need. And they are just straight up humiliating. My face turns bright red and my voice shakes... blah. At the end of my fall semester in 2015, I had 3 (or was it 4? idk) presentations in the same week, every day. And it wasn't just the presentation.. we had to write a paper and make a corresponding presentation. I just didn't have the time for all of it. Why should we have to do both? Since when is writing a paper not enough?

Anyway, I remember giving the first one (it was an honors program course, just some random unnecessary 1 credit class) and the two people in front of me took too long so I had to rush through mine and everyone in that class was just so rude to me it was horrendous. We had to E-mail the professor how we think we did after, and I honestly said I'm bad a giving presentations but this one was especially bad because I felt rushed. She was also a prick to me, basically said if I can't present something that simple to the class why would I be able to present an honors project. So I skipped my last 2 presentations that week because I just felt so discouraged. That was around the beginning of my depression, too. I dropped the honors program shortly after that. There was no incentive other than a special gown at graduation, a trade-off for loads of unnecessary, added stress.

I am sorry you have to go through that. I've never tried to ask my school about not having to give presentations. If I don't feel up to it I just skip it :/ Group work is just as bad though (and usually ends in a presentation, too). You can just never count on the other person. Hell, I also really hate class participation grades because I hate talking in class period.

Mental health initiatives here are really bad. It's like it's not okay for life to happen. What kinds of things have you tried to help with presenting?

You will survive in the real world. There are plenty of jobs that don't require you to present anything. Working with others is important, but you can find jobs where the setting isn't as much pressure at a school so it wouldn't be as bad. Or, depending on what you do, you could freelance something or be self-employed or work from home.
thanks for the response. I'm sorry you went through similar experiences. It really sucks. I haven't tried much to help with presenting. I usually just talk at a slow pace and use cue cards/notes so that I don't forget what to say. Occasionally I stutter or my voice shakes but it goes alright for the most part. My teachers used to think that I did perfectly fine with presentations. Yet they still make me feel like vomiting, shitting my pants, and dying on the spot... which is why I've skipped them entirely for the past 5 years or so.

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I'm going to throw a TED talk your way right now, maybe you think it's lame, maybe you've seen it: https://www.ted.com/talks/amy_cuddy_...es_who_you_are
how does this stuff inspire people? I honestly do not understand.
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Old 02-11-17, 07:22 AM   #4
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I'm sorry you went through that. I think it really sucks how solitary people like us are discriminated against, especially in school. It's as if extroverts run the show. Some jobs require networking, interacting, and "who you know." A few people are even able to just charm their way through life. You're also right that the mental health profession demands perfection and refuses to acknowledge that some conditions are permanent. Therapy just makes me worse.
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Old 02-11-17, 10:50 PM   #5
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Hm... that's interesting. If you do fine at presentations, what is it about them that makes you anxious? Or do you think they are just stupid and pointless so why even bother? I think you may be able to find ways to help you get better at them.

I get nervous because I don't do well presenting and it's just embarrassing :/ And I believe there should be other ways to "present" something than to put on the spot in front of a group of people.

Awh.. sorry you thought the talk was dumb. I've met a lot of people who don't TED talks... almost like there's a stigma against them, but if you just listen you might hear something valuable. I like to listen to them because the speakers are inspired. It's just nice to hear someone talk passionately about something and learn about what others are doing or what kind of connections people make about things in the world.
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Old 02-11-17, 11:44 PM   #6
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Hm... that's interesting. If you do fine at presentations, what is it about them that makes you anxious? Or do you think they are just stupid and pointless so why even bother? I think you may be able to find ways to help you get better at them.
I have social anxiety disorder. Public speaking is one of my biggest fears. I hate being the center of attention. I'm really self-conscious about my appearance and the sound of my voice. I'm terrified of screwing up and embarrassing myself. I'm afraid of being judged by everyone. I hate the physical symptoms that come with the anxiety: blushing, sweating, nausea, shaking, dizziness, and feeling like I'm going to pass out.

I may have done alright according to my past teachers, but for me it's always been a nightmare. And aside from that, I assume that a lot of my teachers were just being nice because they knew how scared I was. Personally, I feel like I make a fool out of myself even if there's evidence to suggest otherwise. I have no interest in getting better at presentations to be perfectly honest. I would rather just not do them.
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Old 02-11-17, 11:59 PM   #7
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I can relate to that.. I thought you meant that your teachers really did think you did okay. I've also felt like teachers have just told me I did fine or given me a good grade because they felt bad for me, or liked me and hated seeing me struggle so badly :/

I would rather not do them either... which is why I end up skipping them so often... but sometimes there are things you just have to go through to reach a bigger goal, even if it sucks and you don't like it. Maybe all the embarrassment will turn out to be useful (getting a degree). Doesn't change that it's unnecessary though :/ there should be other ways.
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Old 02-12-17, 12:20 AM   #8
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I can relate to that.. I thought you meant that your teachers really did think you did okay. I've also felt like teachers have just told me I did fine or given me a good grade because they felt bad for me, or liked me and hated seeing me struggle so badly :/

I would rather not do them either... which is why I end up skipping them so often... but sometimes there are things you just have to go through to reach a bigger goal, even if it sucks and you don't like it. Maybe all the embarrassment will turn out to be useful (getting a degree). Doesn't change that it's unnecessary though :/ there should be other ways.
there is no bigger goal to this though. I don't even want a degree. I'm just getting one because I have to. I recognize that with all of my issues and limitations, there's a good chance I'll end up homeless without an education. Hell, even with a degree it's a very real possibility.

This is what my life has been like since high school. I'm just doing shit because I need to. I have no aspirations. I'm motivated purely by my fear of being in worse situations. This isn't living. It's survival.
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Old 02-12-17, 03:19 PM   #9
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I think aspirations are overrated, seeing as 70% of Americans hate their jobs (and that's at the low end globally).
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Old 02-12-17, 03:44 PM   #10
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I think aspirations are overrated, seeing as 70% of Americans hate their jobs (and that's at the low end globally).
right, career isn't everything and many people don't like their jobs. I agree. The difference is that most people have other things in their life that they do like. The relationships they have with others and the things they do outside of work give them a reason to live. I don't have that.

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