Alice,

I am come from Hong Kong. Nice to meet you. I am a smart boy. I can get good results. I always ask questions. Teachers love me very much. But my classmates do not. They hate me. They laugh at me. I am alone. What can I do. Please help!!

— HK student

Dear HK student,

First off, it sounds like you're an enthusiastic and diligent student and it's great that you're succeeding academically. Nonetheless, rejection and teasing from classmates may make life much tougher. Sometimes people might be really mean to one another which can lead you to feel rather alone. It may be helpful to remember that bullying isn't your fault, and it's not acceptable for other students to pick on you. Also, try not to lose hope — there are many ways for you to connect with others and make friends.

Before getting into some possible ideas for making friends, it may help to talk a bit about what you might do to try to address or seek support for what's going on in your classroom. Have you tried speaking with your teacher? It's typically the responsibility of school staff to intervene if people are making fun of you and to foster a safe and respectful learning environment for all students. It may help to share your experiences and feelings with your teacher, another staff member, advisor, or administrator, as they may be able to assist you and help put a stop to others laughing at you. 

You might also try reaching out to your classmates. If you feel up to it, the next time someone laughs at you, try calmly saying that it's really hurtful. You could ask them why they're teasing you and ask them to stop. It may seem like everyone hates you if a few people are being mean, but some of them might be open to friendship. You might try talking with your classmates about their interests. Maybe someone else is really good at sports, is a talented musician, or is a great poet. Giving someone a sincere compliment may be a good conversation starter. Letting people know what you honestly respect or admire about them is one way to warm people's feelings toward you.

You might also have luck finding friendship outside the classroom. Consider the following possible ideas to share space and meet with folks who have common interests and values:

  • Look for student clubs or activities sponsored by your school that interest you.
  • Check out a local community center or library that offers after school or weekend activities or volunteer opportunities.
  • If you're religious or have a spiritual affiliation, consider attending religious services and see if there are groups for individuals to meet up after services.
  • Use social media to connect with people or to find activities that interest you.

Making friends usually requires time and patience, so hang in there! Take your time and try to connect with people with similar interests. You may also find it helpful to discuss your concerns with a trusted family member or mental health professional, who may have more advice for you about how to handle your concerns. If you still have questions, consider checking out the Friendship category of the Go Ask Alice! Relationships archives to learn more about making friends and connecting with others.

Alice!

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