Zinnia’s continued college adventures: summer 2019

A couple months back, I went into some depth about my personal history as a student, my struggles with high school in adolescence, and my decision this year to go to college for the first time at age 30. I can hardly overstate what a big deal this has been: the college environment is a wholly new experience for me, and it’s been extraordinarily productive in directly addressing the longtime personal trauma of dropping out of high school at 14 and having felt massively inadequate and insecure about myself and my capabilities for most of my life until now. Continue reading “Zinnia’s continued college adventures: summer 2019”

Zinnia goes to college, gets more knowledge

Some of you may have noticed I’ve been a bit occupied this year – I’m still working on resurrecting the classic Gender Analysis website, and I’m also mostly avoiding getting in pointless fights with terrible people on Twitter all. day. long. Why? Well, I’ve got something else going on: I finally started college this January.

This is especially significant for me given my past experiences with the educational system and how this ended up influencing the course of my life. As a child, I was accelerated two grades ahead, and so I started high school at 12, which ended poorly with lots of bad memories and trauma. Whether from puberty and the accompanying onset of severe depersonalization and depression, living in an unsafe household for years while my mother tried to finalize her divorce from my violently erratic ex-stepfather, simple emotional immaturity and unreadiness for the high school environment, or some combination of these, my time at high school turned into a slow-motion trainwreck of conspicuous failure, disappointing and enraging pretty much every adult in my life. When you’ve been skipped ahead multiple grades due to supposed “giftedness”, this is something everyone expects will continue to manifest itself; it was always clear that I was expected to do well academically and then go on to college, even though doing just about anything was already increasingly difficult, and the prospect of going through two more years of high school was just unimaginable. After years of being berated about this at length on a daily basis and hauled to a succession of unhelpful therapists, I dropped out at 14 due to being wholly unable to function at school, which was honestly a relief to me – I just wanted it all to end. I later got my GED at 18, but I never again wanted to be subjected to anything like what I’d been through. Continue reading “Zinnia goes to college, gets more knowledge”