INSPIRING: This father’s advice for his daughter who got delayed in school will touch your heart

In life, we are all scared of something. Terrified that plans won’t push through, terrified that we won’t be able to achieve our dreams, terrified of facing trials – whatever path you’re on, we’re bound to experience both moments of success and setbacks.

But when we are faced with the latter, we should not let this define us as individuals but instead, we should allow this experience to make us better persons.

I personally know a huge percentage of students who are scared of failing their subjects and being delayed from graduation. I’ve been in those shoes, too. College is not a race but more of a journey where one could maximize his life as a student, training himself to become a professional in his/her chosen field, and more so, a path in finding himself/herself.

Alyssa Ayalin, a BS Architecture student from the University of the Philippines – Diliman, was able to inspire a lot of netizens, especially students who struggle with the idea of being delayed in school through a tweet she shared. After breaking the news to her parents that she will be delayed from graduating through a letter, she was surprised to receive a text from her dad; a reaction towards the letter. She said she “didn’t plan to come home that night” because she was “too ashamed”, her dad’s reaction warmed her heart, and was way beyond what she expected.

Ayalin tells WHEN IN MANILA that her college life in the country’s state university was “definitely a roller coaster of emotions”.

I actually shifted out from BA Journalism, also in UP. In my first two years in college (when I was still in BA Journ), the workload was manageable. I always got good grades at the end of the sem. This was also a time where I had a lot of general education subjects, so I wasn’t “trapped” in just studying journalism majors. During these 2 years, I was already planning to shift into architecture, it’s just that in the 1st year, they weren’t accepting any shiftees. After those 2 years, I finally got to shift.

This was when Ayalin felt the overwhelming change.

The hours were longer – we had classes that reached up to 9 pm). The workload was way heavier. I’d often spend hours hunched over, with my back aching and my hands almost shaking from doing the plates continuously. I wasn’t naturally good at my majors. I wasn’t as artistic as the others, or as fast to understand instructions and to execute them. I was lagging behind in terms of natural talent in Arki, and this really affected me. I did my best to accept this, but still, I always unconsciously set too much of a standard for myself. I really love my course, and I really wanted to do my best in this.

Although her passion for her course was in place, Ayalin shared that her way of thinking led her to a “more negative path” for herself. Because she didn’t want to experience anxiety about her problems, she would often escape them.

I started to develop so much anxiety over my works. I would always overthink regarding my majors, I would feel too scared to start my plates because I was afraid of messing up. Whenever I’d manage to force myself to work, there was always a nervous energy around me. So most of the time, I’d put off working to avoid the anxiety (which of course, led to bad results). Everything piled up.

I would cut classes as much as I could, not because I felt lazy, but because I was so scared to attend classes which I felt I wasn’t well prepared for. This all led to my very poor performance in my course, and this took such a huge blow in me. I hated the fact the I was doing so poorly in a course which I worked really hard to get into. I was also failing my Math classes. I was always at the brink of failing my subjects every semester, largely because of excessive absences. It felt horrible.

One and a half years to the Arki life, Ayalin decided to get checked up for her mental health, and got the results she never wanted to hear – she had developed both depression and anxiety.

The semester after getting checked up, my grades really plummeted. I still wasn’t able to manage my anxiety, though my depression seemed to be subsiding. I failed about 3 of my majors due to excessive absences and missed outputs. The majors in UP Arki are seasonal, which means they only offer each major once a year. This meant that I was going to be delayed for a whole year, and I was terrified of telling it to my parents. However the bottom line was that I had no choice, so I decided to write them a long letter explaining what had happened, and asking for their forgiveness. I also wrote that I won’t be coming home that night, since I was too ashamed about what happened.

That same night, my dad sent the reply (which i posted), and I was holding back my tears (I was at school) both from relief and love for my parents.

Ayalin feels extremely lucky to have such supportive parents when it comes to her academics and her mental health.

I feel really lucky to have parents like mine, but at the same time, I felt sympathetic to all the other students who never got the same support that I received from their parents. I hope that the parents out there who get to find out about this could understand that their children are most likely always trying their best, and that it is when they face moments of failure, that’s when they need you the most.

What do you think of this story? Let us know in the comments below!

Disclaimer: does not own any of the photos. Credits go to Alyssa Ayalin.


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