The 10 Emotional Stages Everyone Goes Through When Graduating High School

High school graduation is pretty bittersweet.

On one hand, you're finally free from six hours of class per day and ready to make your own decisions in the adult world. But on the other hand, you also won't spend every day in your comfort zone surrounded by your BFFs.

Gossip Girl Graduation

(Gossip Girl via The CW)

Given all the changes taking place, the months before high school graduation can be a bit of a roller coaster for your feelings. While we can't fix your tumultuous ups and downs, we can at least let you know you're not alone.

Keep scrolling for the 10 emotional stages everyone goes through when graduating high school.

1. Excitement

The first emotional stage of high school graduation takes place way before the actual graduation ceremony. Right at the start of your senior year, all you'll feel is excitement. After all, you're senior—the top of the food chain, the queen of the school! Graduation? Psh, that's such a long ways away. Why would you let that interrupt your genuine happiness at starting your last year of high school?

Vampire Diaries Graduation

(The Vampire Diaries via The CW)


2. Boredom

After the excitement of senior year wears off, the boredom sets in. You start to realize the being a senior is basically the same thing as the last four years of school, with just a few tiny perks. You still have to attend class, get your homework done and study for tests. Sadly, senior year just isn't as cool as you thought it would be, and you start to look forward to getting out of high school.


3. Impatience

By this point, your boredom has transformed into downright frustration. The impatience stage usually hits around the middle of senior year, when you're just so done with all your classes and the never-ending flow of schoolwork that you have to get through. By this stage, graduating high school sounds like the best thing in the world—you just wish the year would hurry along and get you to that final ceremony faster.


4. Unease

As your year starts inching closer and closer to those final days, your impatience with school will gradually transform into a general feeling of unease. Of course you're ready to leave school… aren't you? After all, high school is so boring. But you do have to admit, you'll miss seeing your friends every day… and what if you don't fit in at college? During this stage, all your doubts about the future will come creeping in, and you'll start to think that maybe high school wasn'that bad after all.

High School Musical 3 Graduation

(High School Musical 3: Senior Year via Walt Disney Pictures)


5. Panic

Towards the end of the year, the days will start flying by, and your general sense of unease will turn into straight-up panic. You totally lied, you're not ready to leave high school yet. The real world is too scary and you already know all the teachers and students here. Starting over sounds way too hard—is it too late to fail a class and get held back?


6. Regret

As much you might live your life with a "no regrets" motto, you're bound to have some when the last day of high school comes. Whether it wasn't taking a class that everyone said was amazing or never telling your crush how you actually felt about them, there are always going to be things you wish you did. No one's perfect, so regret is a natural stage when looking back at your high school experience. Just try not to dwell in it for too long—acknowledge the things you wished you did and then sweep them under the rug. After all, there's nothing you can do about them now.


7. Joy

Through all your wild emotions during the course of your senior year, joy will definitely be the one that prevails when your last day actually comes. The feeling of handing in your last paper, completing your last test and closing your locker for the very last time are sure to elicit a sense of genuine happiness. You survived four years of high school—time to party!

Mercedes and Quinn Glee Graduation

(Glee via FOX)


8. Pride

On the day of your actual graduation, you're bound to feel dozens of conflicting emotions, but the primary feeling will definitely be a sense of pride. Graduating high school is a big deal, and you should feel delighted to walk across that stage and get your diploma. You earned it!


9. Relief

Let's be real, everyone has some fears about actually making it across the graduation stage. Whether you're worried that you'll trip and fall or you had some doubts that your grades would prevent you from graduating, relief will definitely take over once everything is said and done. All your anxieties will totally melt away once you have that piece of paper in your hands. No more fears about final grades or potential slips—you're officially free.


10. Nostalgia

Of course, graduation can't be all sunshine and rainbows. Whether it's a few hours or a few weeks, the nostalgia stage will definitely come. Now that you're done with everything, you can look back on the good times of your high school experience with a wistful smile. It might not have been perfect, but there are definitely things you're going to miss.


Trying to prepare for high school graduation? Click HERE for everything you need to consider before picking your Grad Day outfit.