Question

Good day, sir,

I have a question. I take AP English and my class is very intense because it has the top 10% students of my grade and is, therefore, very competitive. I sit next to this girl who is really smart, and she has an odd attitude toward me -- she looks at me funny. Personally, I feel really competitive there because I'm among the best, and I want to do my best. I feel there's a silent competiton between us because I feel she is feels threatened by me. (She has been in the school longer than me.) I know I shouldn't focus on other peoples' opinion because I'm in school for myself. I'd like to focus on myself but in classes like mine, it's really difficult because there's a lot of competition.


Answer

In any class, grades are awarded based on the quality of the student's work. A class full of "A" students will still all get "A"s. The only person you should see yourself competing against is yourself. If you happen to be second best in the class, then know that you did your best anyway. You are just who you happen to be. Whether someone else is worse or better than you doesn't change who you are.

But something else to consider. It is a known fact that teenagers go through a period when they are unable to read body language and facial expressions accurately. They tend to label emotions as more extreme than they actually are. Therefore, it is well within the realm of possibility that you are misreading this girl. Everything you've stated is based solely on your observations and you don't have this other girl's statements to back it up.

Thank you for the reply.