I'm being excluded. It's not a feeling, I know it's happening. Some of my friends are referred to 'school friends' because I only talk to them at school. I'm not invited to the movies or birthday parties like my other 'school friends' are. I do have friends who live in my neighborhood and we hang out a lot, but I recently found they have been doing activites together, without me. My neighborhood friends and I have been friends since kindergarten, and my school friends since 4th grade. I put on a little weight a few months ago, but I didn't think it was that bad. But now I think they're excluding me ever since of that. I can't even look at mysel in the mirror anymore. The pain of being excluded really hurts, and it's driving me crazy. What should I do?
Being excluded is a feeling and an action. I have felt excluded since 5th grade. I felt excluded from peers, in the family, and in the work world. There is so many reasons I've been excluded - looks, fashion type, disability, religion, vegetarian, non-drinker, etc, etc, etc. Generally, one is often excluded because one is considered to not fit into "the norm", and therefore not accepted. As someone excluded, rather than being part of the normal, center population, one is in the margin. I didn't fit in the norm because of reasons out of my control, as well as I hold higher values than the norm (according to my belief). It is not a full solution to being excluded, but what I felt very helpful over the years is finding other people stuck in the margin who hold similar values as you. In high school and college, I found international students from different cultures to socialize with. During my senior year in high school I met two students with disabilities, who also felt excluded, and the three of us created a orientation committee for our high school. The duties of our committee was to welcome all new students and help anyone seeking friends. We held social gatherings after school in which anybody seeking friends were welcome. When seeking friends in the marginal group, seek those who hold high values like you; don't get pulled down to lower values.