I Learn Library

A human library inspired by the stories in the film

Struggle Expressing Myself

By Adrian S.  |   From : Upper Marlboro, MD  |   School : International High School at LArgo

In my opinion, it is difficult for all of us when we migrate to another country. When I came to this country, It was difficult for me to express myself, and it was not a problem of shyness. 

I can remember those times that my aunt’s friend asked me, “Why don’t you respond to what I ask you?” 

I understood what she was saying, but I couldn’t do anything because I didn’t know what to say. Thats why I was always alone, not because I wanted to be, but because of the struggle of expressing myself. Friendship wasn’t easy for me, but I realized that I just had to work hard to get over those struggles when my aunt told me

“If you work hard in school you will learn a lot and you will be able to talk to everyone just like me” and those words motivated me.

It is difficult for me to express myself. It may be that I was bad with the language and don’t know how to choose the words well. and I was worried too much about how others will react to what I said and made me feel insecure. But I got over this struggle by not worrying. many people have a hard time expressing themselves or choosing the right words for what they want to convey. My ESOL teacher used to tell me

“You should watch tv shows in English and download music in english so you can learn more”

For this, something as simple as reading, watching youtube videos, or listening to music may be helpful.

For most people, friendship seems to come easy, but for me, at that time, it wasn’t. I didn’t have a friend to talk to. In class, I used to spend the whole classes just sitting down, and I didn’t do anything the teachers use to tell me

“If you keep that same attitude you will fail”.

The only class that I did something was in ESOL class because I could talk in my language with my teacher, Miss Kevorkian. She was the coolest teacher that I have had, and she taught me a lot of things. Most of all, she supported me when I needed her. I also got over this struggle by not worrying. Many people have a hard time expressing themselves or choosing the right words for what they want to convey.  For this, something as simple as reading, watching YouTube videos, or listening to music may be helpful. 

I got over this struggle by not worrying about the reactions of others, that they may judge me, or they misunderstand me.  I felt insecure when expressing myself, but I encourage myself to experiment, and try to say what I was thinking. I would do this to see what would happen, and sometimes my words were better received than I expected.  When I was misunderstood, I was able to clarify what I meant.

Finally, One day of my 9th grade year, I told my teacher that my fear was to talk in front of everyone and she told me,

“The best way to face your fears is by just doing it.”

Then, she told me I had to read an article in front of everyone. I was so scared of saying something improperly that I used to read the article everyday until the performance day. Since that day, I lost the fear of talking in front of people, or to people. I started to open up with people and my english got more fluent. I even started to have more friends. It was funny because people would say, “Whoa the anti-social kid is being sociable!” 

In conclusion, no matter how afraid you are, or how embarrassed you think you will be, just take a risk.  Encourage yourself to do what scares you, and see what happens. Now as a teenager, I like to challenge myself on my fears. I can make friends easier, and I am more empathetic.  Because I struggled, I like to understand my friends’ struggles ,so I can help them. 

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