If you and your parents went to the same High School who'd be more "popular"?

My mum's always been a bit quiet about her school years and based on the fact that she got one O level (or 1 GCSE) out of it, combined with the rest of her personality, I can figure out why. She barely went to school. She was a rebellious kid. She also got invited to MENSA, so she wasn't an idiot. I don't know what her deal was, but her and school just didn't mix for some reason. At the age of 17 she fucked off to America and got married.

She was apparently extremely popular in her school years based on scraps of knowledge I've obtained from her and her old high school friends. She thought for herself and she did whatever she wanted.

She encouraged me to attend school and get high grades and I did, but if I ever wanted some time off school she wasn't afraid to let me have it. I missed a lot of school, but I studied even from home and passed every class. The fact that I had Asperger's helped, because I think it allowed the school to give me some leniency.

I had no friends in school. I was awkward, quiet and unsocial - but my mum was my best friend growing up and she taught me everything that school could only partially teach me. Not about maths or science or English but about how to navigate life in a realistic way. How to play the system. How to read and understand people. If somebody was bullying me it was a lesson, it was an analysis course. Why were they bullying me? What made them suck? More importantly, what was it about myself that made them think of me as an easy target? How could I close up that weakness?

My mum taught me more than school ever could. She was probably the Regina George of her classroom, but I was at the bottom of the totem pole and we both knew it. She didn't care - she knew I was better and that I could do better and she helped me to overcome that. By years 10 and above I had made friends, friends I would (and still) keep for life. We forged very strong bonds, because my mum also taught me to never stop being myself and to stick up for myself no matter what.

She is the best. If we'd both been in school at the same time, I have no doubt that we would never have been friends. She may have thought me weird, awkward, boring or stupid. She may have made my life a living hell. But luckily she was my mother and she had all of the high school smarts I lacked from her own experiences and armed me with that knowledge in order to help defend against my bullies. To her, school wasn't so much about me learning academic stuff - it was more about me learning how to deal with normal people, because she knew it would equip me to deal with other adults in my adulthood. She knew it would help me to lead a normal life. The courts almost forced her to send me to a special ed school and she fought against it, because she knew it would take away my chances.

Sometimes if you're like me, going through the flames is the only way to have a good chance. My school years weren't fun, but I wouldn't exchange it for anything. I learned a lot. I learned a lot of things the hard way and I had her in my corner. I went on to university and got a degree, so it wasn't without merit.

This answer is a bit weird so for this I apologise, but I just wanted to add that while I think my mother and I may have not gotten on if we were the same age, it was precisely that reason that made her so helpful to me as a mother!

/r/AskReddit Thread