Being Different is often viewed as a bad thing. Everyone wants to fit in, right? No one wants to be identified as the one different from all the rest. This is especially the case with adolescents. As adolescents try to claim their own independence away from their families they are looking for a place to reattach their identity in order to have a sense of belonging. Adolescents look for similarities in others in an attempt to form relationships, but when they feel apart from everyone else this could lead to depression and could possibly lead to poor, impulsive decision making brought on by peer pressure. It’s at that age that any difference can be used as a target against you no matter how insignificant it may seem.

I say let those differences be what joins people. Let the idea that everyone is so different be the binding force behind establishing a greater sense of belonging in that all of those things that make you uniquely you be celebrated instead. It is in those differences that people learn to truly discover each other as compared to holding misinformed beliefs based on stereotypes. A poem that puts this best is entitled, Kids Who Are Different, by Digby Wolfe, which goes as follows:

Here’s to kids who are different,
Kids who don’t always get A’s,
Kids who have ears
Twice the size of their peers,
And noses that go on for days.

Here’s to kids who are different,
Kids they call crazy or dumb,
Kids who don’t fit,
With the guts and the grit,
Who dance to a different drum.

Here’s to kids who are different,
Kids with a mischievous streak.
For when they have grown,
As history has shown,
It’s their difference that makes them unique.

This idea is one of the main driving forces behind the adolescent group that has been running for almost five years at STA. If you struggle with being proud of what makes you uniquely you know that there is a place where those differences are encouraged and celebrated by many who feel the same. You can always reach us at (201) 488-6678 to schedule an intake. Being Different isn’t a bad thing, celebrate your uniqueness!