Why IB Was The Worst Thing To Happen To Me

Why IB Was The Worst Thing To Happen To Me

But still, I would do it all again.
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If you are, or are friends with an International Baccalaureate student, you've probably seen the posts on social media announcing their freedom from the chains of IB. "We passed!"..."No more IAs!"..."Good riddance, high school!" You're probably thinking all right, we get it. IB kids, can you maybe chill? but their excitement is no exaggeration. IB was the worst two years of my life (for academics and my mental health) and I, for one, am beyond glad it's over.

The first reason that IB was such a horrible experience was the toxic community it created. My public high school had both an IB stream and a regular stream of students. This bred a sense of exclusivity to the point where us IB students had a cult-like support system in place. We were IB. All we could talk about was IB and our EEs, IAs and every two letter acronym we could think of. Although at times, the close-knit community was nice, one person's anxiety would spread to everyone else and our "support system" turned into a machine designed to keep all of us on edge at all times. Many of us rarely ventured out of our IB bubble to find time to relax (and sleep) between our assignments and tests.

Second was the obvious workload. The way IB is designed is to force you to become a well-rounded student. Unlike AP, or my provincial education system, you can't choose courses that you're good at or are interested in pursuing. For IB, you have to take a course in almost every discipline. So although you may find the math coursework to be a piece of cake, the tests, homework, and papers may be overwhelming to another student. Unless you're gifted with an affinity for all subjects, IB guarantees that you will struggle with the workload for at least one course in your high school career.

The worst part of IB, however, are the exams. Senior year exams in May. For me, this meant re-learning two years of material for all my courses in two weeks. Maybe it's just that I'm not too good at dealing with stress, but I can only imagine the number of snaps I've been featured in as "that girl breaking down in the library." However, if the slew of panic-stricken tweets that flooded my feed were any indication, my classmates were in the same boat as me. Honest advice to the IB students in their junior year: start studying early. You've heard that line a million times before for a reason. You may feel invincible after finishing all your IAs and EEs, but exams hit you a lot harder than you will be prepared for. Oh, and don't hesitate to drink tons of bubble tea to get you through the three weeks of hell.

If you ask me right now if I enjoyed IB, I would say with utmost confidence, that no, I did not. Was IB worth it? Would I do it again? Well, yes. I'm a lot stronger than I was before the whole IB debacle took over my life and the happiness of finishing my last exam and running out those school doors is not so bad either. As a bonus, I have a cult-ish support system of friends I can count on for anything.

Cover Image Credit: Crusader Connection

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To The Teacher Who Was So Much More

Thank you for everything
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I think it's fair to say that most people remember at least one teacher who had a lasting impact on them. I have been incredibly lucky to have several teachers who I will never forget, but one individual takes the cake. So here's to you: thank you for all you have done.

Thank you for teaching me lessons not just in the textbook.

Although you taught a great lecture, class was never just limited to the contents of the course. Debates and somewhat heated conversations would arise between classmates over politics and course material, and you always encouraged open discussion. You embraced the idea of always having an opinion, and always making it be heard, because why waste your voice? You taught me to fight for things I believed in, and to hold my ground in an argument. You taught me to always think of others before doing and speaking. You showed me the power of kindness. Thank you for all the important lessons that may not have been included in the curriculum.

Thank you for believing in me.

Especially in my senior year, you believed in me when other teachers didn't. You showed me just what I could accomplish with a positive and strong attitude. Your unwavering support kept me going, especially when I melted into a puddle of tears weekly in your office. You listened to my stupid complaints, understood my overwhelming stress-induced breakdowns, and told me it was going to be okay. Thank you for always being there for me.

Thank you for inspiring me.

You are the epitome of a role model. Not only are you intelligent and respected, but you have a heart of gold and emit beautiful light where ever you go. You showed me that service to others should not be looked at as a chore, but something to enjoy and find yourself in. And I have found myself in giving back to people, thanks to your spark. Thank you for showing me, and so many students, just how incredible one person can be.

Thank you for changing my life.

Without you, I truly would not be where I am today. As cliche as it sounds, you had such a remarkable impact on me and my outlook on life. Just about a year has passed since my graduation, and I'm grateful to still keep in touch. I hope you understand the impact you have made on me, and on so many other students. You are amazing, and I thank you for all you have done.

Cover Image Credit: Amy Aroune

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5 things bisexual people are So tired of hearing From Cis-Hets

Too many people can't wrap their head around the concept of bisexuality, and it's getting old.

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The Merriam-Webster definition of bisexuality: sexual or romantic attraction to members of both sexes; also: engaging in sexual activity with partners of more than one gender. Yet, this can often be a very confusing concept for certain people to understand. As a result, people who identify openly as bisexual are often subjected to a slew of frustrating questions and statements that have grown tiring. So here is a list of just a handful of them.

1. "So, you're straight now?"

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So, as the definition implies, bisexuals typically like both men and women. So, if you are a bisexual woman, and you are dating a man, no, that does not mean that you are straight now. You are still bisexual, you are just in a relationship with a man at the moment. Please, stop asking this.

2. "So, you're gay now?"

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Okay, so, this is the flip side of the previous question, yes, but it needs to be said because of the frequency of its utterance. If a bisexual man is in a relationship with a man, he is not "gay now". He is still bisexual, again. He is just in a relationship with a man. Regardless of whether or not a bisexual person is in a same-sex or different-sex relationship, they remain, and will always remain bisexual. So, let's just put this question and the former question to rest.

3. "Do you have sex with everyone and anyone?"

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Bisexuality does not equal sexual deviancy. Just because a bisexual person can fall in love with or have a sexual relationship with a person of any gender does not mean that they will have sex with literally any human being who offers. No, they will not have sex with anyone just because they can. That is not how it works.

4. "Will you have a threesome with me and my boyfriend/girlfriend?"

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NO. No, no, no. Just because a bisexual person will have sex with someone of either gender does not mean that they want to have sex with you and your significant other at the same time. Please, stop asking your bisexual friends and acquaintances to jump into bed with you and your boyfriend or girlfriend just to spice things up in the bedroom. It's extremely rude and presumptuous. Bisexual people are not your sexual fantasy or your sexual fantasy come true.

5. "Bisexuals are just selfish/looking for attention."

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People always say that most bisexuals are just pretending to be bisexual for attention and that they aren't genuinely attracted to more than one gender. This is a fallacy. Stop accusing young bisexuals of playing pretend or going through a phase. Bisexuals are valid. They're sick of hearing these erasure comments. It's also constantly implied that bisexuals are just being selfish/greedy. That is not the case, and this belief system needs to be destroyed and done away with immediately. As stated before, bisexuals are not these inherently sexually crazed lunatics. Being attracted to more than one gender does not automatically equate to sex with everyone. Bisexuals are not greedy nymphomaniacs who just want to have as much sex as they can for themselves.

There are numerous other frustrating comments and questions that bisexuals get bombarded with on the daily. This is just a select few that stand out. So, please, if you are someone who says these things, stop. If you have heard someone say these things, or you hear them say any variation of these things in the future, please, correct them. We all need to make a conscious effort to stop this close-minded conversation to continue.

Cover Image Credit:

Naeimasgary

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