Orientation, Also Known as an Introvert’s Nightmare

Celeste Barnaby shares her experience as an introvert during her first week as a college freshman.

Most colleges have an orientation period before classes start where freshman move in and spend a couple days getting situated, learning about the school, and meeting their peers. There are usually a lot of cool events that you can choose to attend at your leisure. This is your chance to make a first impression and …

Mean Girls in Kindergarten? Are You Kidding Me?

Samantha Parent Walravens realizes how early drama can arise among young girls, especially in school.

I have four kids – my boys are 15 and 13, my girls are 9 and 5. While my boys nearly drove me into the ground as toddlers with their endless physical energy and constant running around, the girls are currently winning the race to dig me an early grave with their ongoing girl drama and emotional highs and lows.

If I had to choose, I’d take the physical exhaustion of boys over the emotional exhaustion of girls ANY DAY.

I wasn’t expecting the girl drama to start at such a young age, however. This morning, my 5-year-old stopped me at the door of her Kindergarten classroom with tears running down her chubby little cheeks. She told me that she was scared to go to school, that her friends weren’t being nice, and that she wanted to go home.

3 Ways To Know If You’re In The Wrong Friendship

Are you in a toxic friendship? Girl Blogger Briana Hernandez has three questions to ask yourself if you think it might be.


Flip through any women’s magazine and you will likely see a “How to tell if your boyfriend is the one” quiz. I remember always being seriously bummed out by those (I didn’t have a boyfriend until much, much…much later). What I could have used instead was a magical quiz that would tell me if my friend was “the one.” Could I upgrade her from simple “friend” to BFF? After all, that last F is a big deal! It doesn’t involve putting a ring on it, but it means we are in it until the end, right? But what if your friend isn’t right for you after all? Just like we can date people who will turn out to be incompatible with us, some friends can turn out to be not so good for us either.

Speak Out: A Shy Person’s Guide to Confidence

Former GLI Communications Intern, Olivia Tang-Kong, writes about how shyness doesn’t have to limit your ability to be a leader or embrace your authentic self.

It was a little over a year ago that I walked into an auditorium of strange faces. There were small clusters of people scattered everywhere – where do I sit? It was the first club meeting of the year, and as a brand-new freshman in college, I knew this would be a great opportunity to meet …

Dear Ms. Starr,

I wondered if you could shed some light on a concern. My 8-year-old daughter has become obsessed with various TV shows. Over the last month she has gone through a Suite Life of Zack and Cody phase and now she is watching Lizzy McGuire. She can’t seem to get enough! She seeks them out the minute we get home each evening and would gladly watch them uninterrupted until we drag her to bed. Recently I’ve become worried about the kind of messages these programs are sending about friendship and communication. For example, from the little I have watched of these shows, it seems the characters engage in a lot of trash talking with each other. I have tried to expose her to other types of shows, mostly PBS ones that are available online, but she strongly resists. Is this common among girls her age? Does it concern you as much at it concerns me, and what do you suggest I do here?

~ Too Much TV

Dear Too Much TV,

Sadly, I think that watching a lot of TV is the norm for many kids these days.

I too remember being smitten with certain shows (Go Go Power Rangers!) when I was growing up, watching them for hours until my eyes hurt or my parents forced me to do something else, whichever came first. Props to you for noticing the ways in which these popular TV personas may not be the best role models for girls when it comes to communication and what it means to be a true friend.

Dear Ms. Starr,

I am in the fourth grade and I have two best friends. We spend all of our time together and play every day at recess. My friends are always asking me what I want to do and they always ask me to choose what games we play. They both also copy things that I say and how I dress and do my hair. I really like being original and don’t like how they copy me. I also don’t want to hurt their feelings. How do I get them to stop copying me?

~ Concerned About Copycats

Dear Concerned,

Although you may feel frustrated when your friends copy you, it’s also a form of flattery (meaning that they think you’re pretty cool). It seems like your friends really look up to you and don’t want to upset you or let you down if they choose a game that you don’t like playing.