An open letter to my younger self

Dear 15 year old Milly,

If memory serves correctly you’re in year 10 and it’s the happiest year in high school you’ve had so far. You’re probably wondering what the future holds for you: you didn’t get into a law degree, which is completely fine as you had no interest in law anyway; you’ve figured out that you can get university credit for travelling; and you’ve learned that being single is actually really enjoyable.

Here’s a collection of advice to prepare you for the years to come: 

Do not let peroxide get anywhere near your hair. It is a terrible idea and you will look like an old woman but no-one will tell you. Also, every single time you cut your hair short you will regret it. A lot.

Delete your Formspring account. It seems like a joke, but anyone who sends anonymous questions about your non-existent sex life online is harassing you. You have some friends with unsavoury ideas about the role of women and you should educate or cut them out of your life now.

Your high school crushes are just that, crushes. They change about every 3-6 months. You’ve been watching too many school-life anime series – you are not in love with them and therefore you do not need to confess that “love”. And don’t go out with anyone because you’re afraid to hurt their feelings by turning them down. It only makes things more difficult in the long run.

On that note, someone will love you for the person that you are, even if it is temporary. It feels incredible, but don’t let that compromise your principles or force you into doing anything you feel uncomfortable or unsafe with.

If you have a problem with the way your friends are behaving talk to them personally and leave social media (especially anything public) out of it. Also, call or visit the person you’re dating when your relationship takes a turn so you don’t have to sheepishly admit that you were broken up with over Facebook Messenger. Or better yet, break up with him first.

Learn how to save money and budget. In your early twenties you’re still struggling, and regret spending a lot of money on extravagant presents for and dates with your (now ex) boyfriend years later. Save that money up for travelling, as it’s something you’re passionate about.

Finally, the next few years are going to take a serious toll on your mental health, which will extend to your physical health. Visit a GP when you feel like you’re drowning and can’t see a light at the end of the tunnel. There is no shame in asking for help, and your true friends will stick by you even if they can’t understand what’s going on in your mind.

You’ve got a lot to look forward to kiddo, so get out there and make the most of your life!

 

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