by Sade Tavangarian
Have you ever been on the phone with someone when you suddenly notice an uncomfortable moment of silence? Or talking about someone when you realize they are standing right behind you?
If you have, I think you have yourself a case of Awkward Syndrome. No worries, Iâm sure we all have been diagnosed at least once in the past week, since it is a very common disease for high school students.
Coming from the girl who is the epitome of awkward, I had to address these situations because I, literally, deal with them daily. I wouldnât exactly call myself socially adept; it took me about 2 1/2 years to say some of my first words at Harvard- Westlake.
I always fail to say the right thing at the right time and never know how to move on.
If you think about it, the word awkward is such a broad term in itself; it can range from describing uncomfortable or difficult situations to describing embarrassment.
My idea of a nightmare come true is meeting people for the first time. It just doesnât come naturally to me. Iâm utterly jealous of people who have no apprehension introducing themselves, but, I personally think introductions in general have “Warning: Awkward Moment Approaching” written all over them.
Itâs just so complicated. You donât want to come off as too friendly, but then again you donât want to come off as distant. I know from experience that most people either try to search for common friends or exchange compliments. Thatâs just the talking part; I havenât even touched on the body language. Do you handshake, hug, or place your hands by your side? I still canât exactly answer my questions, but I think over time Iâll get more comfortable and it will fall into place. Another situation most kids our age deal with is awkward situations with the opposite sex.
For example, when a girl is texting with her crush, we all gather around and try to find the perfect replies. When the guy writes back with a typical conversation ender like, “K Cool” suddenly the girlâs high hopes fall. All of her friends are silent because if she writes anything back it could potentially be very awkward. As much as I want to provide a cure, I cannot. All I can say from past experiences is to hold your head up high and just laugh it off.
The worst thing you can do to treat an uncomfortable situation is to say, “Well, that was awkward.” As much as the thought is pounding in your head, saying it aloud just makes it much worse, and more directly points out the awkward moment. I would recommend to make up some brilliant excuse for an emergency exit, but then again how does that help with anything?
As much as we feel like hiding under our covers, not running away from these situations can stop them from happening again.
Itâs all a trial and error process for us and as long as we get something out of it, maybe these awkward times are worth it.
We all are in this together. We just have to embrace those awkward Mondaysâ, those comments made during the worst times, those texts that end up getting sent to the wrong person, and those weird conversations.
Theyâre an essential part of our high school lives, whether we like them or not; people donât call it the “awkward stage” for nothing.