BRISTOL, Connecticut, U.S.A. — So you’re about to begin high school. We all know what the first thing on your mind is. Don’t try to hide it — everyone knows what you’re thinking about. You’ve been anticipating this day since you graduated from eighth grade, and perhaps even sooner.
If you’re a boy, you’re out of luck. But if you’re a girl, watch out — you are about to become prey.
I remember my first day at Bristol Eastern High School very well. I was in awe. I had just gotten out of middle school, full of prepubescent boys who still made farting sounds and had scrawny chicken legs.
Suddenly, I was surrounded by these visions: upperclassmen. It seemed they were all tall, athletic, bleached-blonde Abercrombie models. Some of them even had cars.
Of course, my friends and I were flattered by all the attention we received from them. Before long, the freshmen girls had abandoned all of their middle school crushes and were on to bigger and better things.
Freshmen guys, realizing that older girls didn’t have much of an interest in them, sat around and waited for next year, when they could prey on the new class.
After all, why not? To them, you’re innocent, you’re sweet, you want to be cool — basically, they’ll assume you’re an easy catch.
I’m not saying that all high school males are bad. In fact, most of them are pretty nice guys. But we both know that they simply don’t know any better.
They see girls that are easily taken advantage of and they pounce.
Take, for example, the epidemic that occurred this year. All of the guys in the sophomore class had previously been neglected. Therefore, they didn’t waste any time making ties with the frosh.
This doesn’t mean that these girls wouldn’t receive any attention without the freshmen hype. I’m sure that regardless of their timing, guys would have liked them.
I simply mean that they see new girls just as we saw new boys the year before and go crazy. There seem to be so many of you, all innocent to the ways of high school boys.
It’s understandable; they had been ignored by most of the girls in the school for so long that they couldn’t pass up the chance.
In any case, consider this a warning. It’s a trend that moves on to every incoming class. You can’t avoid it any more than you can resist it, but make sure you don’t let yourself be used.
I’m simply saying that you need to be aware of the moves that will inevitably be put upon you.
Don’t let yourself be as innocent as they think you are. Play with their minds, manipulate them, and use them just as much as they will use you.
Most importantly, be nice to upperclassmen girls.
You don’t want them on your bad side any more than you want a vengeful ex-boyfriend. Older girls are annoyed by little girls who think they are the center of attention. Even if you are, even if the hottest guy in the junior class is calling you every night, never, ever act like you are better than the girls that are his friends. They’ll hate you, and you’ll probably pay for it later.
Consider yourself warned. All you need to do is remember these things:
1) Upperclassmen guys are fun. They are not gods. There is a reason why they can’t get any girls their own age.
2) Don’t neglect the freshmen guys. You’re going to need a senior prom date eventually.
3) It’s better to have upperclassmen girls on your side, not against you. They can make your life a living hell.
4) The most obvious: Don’t let yourself be used. The last thing you need is a reputation in your first year of high school. It could stick with you throughout the next three years.
Keeping all these things in mind, have a good time in the years to come. You will learn a lot, love a lot, and be hurt a lot … if you’re lucky.
Just know that you’ll be all set if you can handle the upperclassmen guys.
Natalie Minor is a Reporter from Connecticut for Youth Journalism International. Noel Fahden is a Cartoonist from California for Youth Journalism International.
You can read Joe Wilbur’s companion piece about girls here.