Excuses | Teen Ink


December 8, 2007
By Anonymous

To Whom It May Concern:

Writing a letter of special circumstance is a bittersweet experience for me. On the one side, it's a wonderful opportunity to explain why my grade point average isn't where it should be. However, on the other, I feel as if I should just deal with the events and not try to make excuses for them. But still, here I am, writing about past mishaps and shortcomings, direly hoping that an explanation will earn me the right to go to Gustavus.

It seems as though every year of my high school career held some sort of new personal challenge. I've always been praised as an intelligent student and fast learner, but when depression set in, my motivation simply dropped. As a freshman at Osceola High School, my struggles were early to set in. My parents had recently divorced the summer before, and consequentially I was being bounced back and forth between houses and dealing with being the buffer between my parents' mutual dislike for one another. Many of their troubles had to do with the drowning of my little brother four years before, and they seemed to need to find someone to blame. Granted, my ten-year-old brain couldn't comprehend his death when I witnessed it, but as I grew, I let the guilt settle on myself.

Of course, I'm not the only child who has had to deal with a tumultuous divorce, but the added weight of coming out at a very young age was a little too much to handle. Being "the gay kid" set me apart in my small, rural high school, and thus, depression descended. My grades reflect my downward spiral in every year of my education. First semester is great, I'm still summer-high—and then the constant abuse finally gets to me.

Sophomore year, I moved in with my mother and switched schools. The pattern continued. As a junior, I regrettably reached the peak of my mental unhealthiness. After a ten-day stay in the hospital in November of 2006, it was very difficult to bounce back. As my transcript shows, I've never failed anything, but a 2.93 GPA is not going to get me into a school whose accepting average is 3.67. However, my intelligence does assert itself in my ACT score, a 27. (Also, this score will only get better, as I am retaking the test in October.)

For the record, my senior year will not portray my negative habit. While it may have taken a long three years, I have my depression in check, I am confident in myself and who I am, and I have no intention of not applying myself in class. I am prepared to give one hundred percent, and by the end of this year, my GPA will definitely be above the 3.0 spectrum. Gustavus is my top college choice—the grounds are beautiful, the architecture is superb, and the staff and students are a family that I want to fit into. I want to contribute to the college and make a name for myself; I want to prove that I really am a smart person. I only wish that this letter would be taken into careful consideration, instead of being seen as just a whiny excuse. My heart is bent on showing I'm worth of being accepted.



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