Ask Sam letter


To Sam

I have been off school for about 3 weeks from an illness and I’m really worried.

i have been off school for about 3 weeks from an illness which has been referred to the hospital and ive had lots of tests and things. im starting to feel better but im so worried about all the work i have missed and what i am missing and im so scared to go back and i feel really alone and im constantly crying because im so worried about all the work im missing and i keep on comparing myself to my friends and thinking ”oh they havent missed school they are fine they have nothing to worry about” and things like that and im just so worried and i dont know what to do. im trying to be brave and just go back but its so hard and im so scared about what im missing and what i have to catch up on i just dont know what to do.

please help me i dont know what i can do and im so scared ?

Ask Sam


Hi there,

It can be difficult to go back to school, college or work after being away for a while. You might worry that you've missed out on things, that people will be different or treat you differently. You might also worry about what to say when people ask where you've been, especially if the reason is personal and you don't want to share it.

Most people go off sick for things from time to time. Some illnesses mean you have to be at home or in hospital for a long time - weeks or even months. When this happens it can change everything and your normal routine is disrupted. Losing things that are familiar can also take away your confidence. Going back to school with low confidence makes things even harder.

It can be difficult but worrying about missing work is something you shouldn't focus too much on. There are different ways you can manage your anxiety when you’re worried. Your main focus should be on getting better and looking after yourself. Work can always be caught up later on and your school should help you to do this. They might allow you extra time to catch up and may offer support from teachers if you need it. If they don't offer this automatically, you should ask for it.

Sometimes there are other things we worry about missing when we're away from friends. You may have heard of the "fear of missing out" - worrying about friends doing things without you and feeling like you've been left behind. This can become worse in our imagination than it really is. One way to think about it is how you've felt when friends have been away for a while - often you'll just be happy to see them when they're back. Your friends are likely to feel the same way.

I hope this has helped. If your school haven't been helpful or you just want to talk, our counsellors are there for you if you need support.

Take care.


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