In this blog, I am going to be talking about what it is like to undertake exams and assessments within school, college and university as a care experienced person. This blog has been written from my own personal experience of what it was like for me during the exam season when i was at school, but most importantly i am writing this blog, from the point of view of someone who is undertaking their final module exam within higher education.
As we go through the stressful few months that many of us are wanting to be over as fast as possible, we need to remember and celebrate the achievement of being able to get this far as a care experienced person. From my point of view and as someone who has gone through the fostering system and now exiting to be independent, during the times of exams all I was feeling was stress and dread like many of our peers, but there’s one big difference between us and our peers… Many of us do not have the support and guidance of our parents and we are needing to do the best we can during unprecedented stress and circumstances while being in care.
I can remember from my own experience, when being in foster care and undertaking my exams, all i felt was anxiety and upset, because i never knew if I was going to do well and everything i felt was that i was going to fail… Like everyone who does exams, the first thing they feel once they come out of the exam hall is ‘ Oh my god, that exam was horrible, I am going to fail’. From my own experience of doing exams and hearing my friends and peers talk about their exam after undertaking them, i know first hand that alot of us were feeling the anxiety of not passing, however, when this was going on, a lot of my peers and friends was able to turn to their parents for encouragement and guidance of reassurance, which was really upsetting as during that time all I was thinking was ‘ Who do I have that I can turn to who can help me or reassure me that I was going to do ok or that I was going to be ok’.
The reality of it was that I was on my own and that I had to go through this hard and terrifying time all on my own with no help and no support from the people that I was closest to, which over all, this hurt massively as I felt that i was truly alone and had no one around me that actually cared. However, this all changed once I completed my last exam, as when this happened all I felt was complete and utter relief, which i know a lot of the GCSE, A Level and Degree Students will feel as well this year, especially after two whole years of not knowing whether you are going to under take them or not.
So, a message for all those care experienced people who are reading this blog and taking your exams, do the very best that you can.. For those of you who are at school taking your GCSE ‘s , do the best that you can and don’t over stress yourselves. From experience if you are struggling revising before the exam, get some support and help from a friend, or your classmates or even your teacher. There will always be someone there to help you, but most importantly once you have finished never feel that you have done bad, because the reality is that you have got a long wait to find out your results.
Celebrate the success that you have completed the exam and finished school, but most all celebrate your achievement so far because getting this far and being a care experienced person, is something to be proud off…
Oh and one last thing…. Always remember…..
YOU ARE DOING AMAZING ….
For advice and information on stress and anxiety managemet during exam seasons please visit: https://www.youngminds.org.uk/young-person/coping-with-life/exam-stress/
By Anonymous Care Experienced Blogger