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“Sweatshirts became my security blanket.”

Who has a positive self-image in high school? Starting my freshman year at a new school, my-self confidence was at an all-time low. Here I was making comparisons between my appearance and those I perceived to be better or prettier than me. When I was 14, all you’d see in my closet were sweatshirts. They were my security blanket because they covered all my flaws. Or so I thought.

I didn’t consider myself a “troubled” teen. I also didn’t think I was one of the really “smart” kids, either. I was a normal freshman girl who was struggling with the pressure of trying to be perfect. It seemed like the high school boys were only looking at the pretty girls, which made me feel invisible at times. Deep down, I knew I had more confidence than this. I just had to dig a little deeper to find it.

Then something happened in high school that began to change my thinking. And although I didn’t know it at the time, this was going to make me the confident person I wanted to be. I started attending Life On Point program every week at my school. I quickly realized how much I enjoyed going to the meetings. It not only allowed me to make new friends, but it was a chance for me to express myself. Slowly, my confidence began increasing. And slowly, the sweatshirts in my closet disappeared. I loved the feeling of better self-esteem!

Not long after I joined the group, I heard about On Point’s teen board. I jumped at the opportunity to join. If there’s one thing that is really unique about my peers on the teen board, it’s the fact that all of us are really different. Some come from single-parent households, some from strong, supportive families, and some from families with limited financial means. All of us, however, agree on one thing—we’re focused on making good decisions. It’s pretty amazing how good it feels to have so many friends that support and keep me on the right track. In fact, I really think of the teen board as an extension of my family.

Looking back, it’s been a journey and there were times I wondered if I could become a stronger, more self-assured individual. Fear not, the confidence I have now is so evident to my friends and family, it’s almost like I’m a new person. I’m so much happier and this happiness is something I can share with other teens struggling with issues of self-confidence.

After high school, Bria plans to attend college. She is thinking about becoming either a teacher or a veterinarian. Bria’s also very active in her high school’s Concert Choir. In addition to that, she is involved in her church, where she serves in the youth welcome ministry, as well as the children’s ministry.