Q: I am extremely concerned about school safety. The door monitors don’t check the IDs closely enough because some people have gotten away with using someone else’s ID. I do not think that the school is taking proper safety precautions, and I’m in constant fear of something happening. Any advice on how to overcome this?
— Cautious Coed

A: If you see something, say something. I would bring up your concerns about people being able to enter the building using someone else’s ID with a teacher or one of the officers. Currently, a safety audit is being held throughout the district, so school safety measures may be changing once it is completed, if that gives you any sense of solace. You are not alone in fearing a possible threat: recent events have caused great alarm among parents, teachers and students especially. The best way to relieve some of this anxiety may be to talk about it with others, whether that’s parents, teachers, friends or a school counselor.

Q: I’m feeling out of touch with my friends. How do I try to reconnect with them without being awkward, or how do I peacefully and smoothly leave the friend group and move on?
— Disconnect Ed

A: Don’t be afraid that an attempt of rekindling a relationship will be awkward. These people know you — they might even know you best. If you think it’s worth saving, reach out to them before dropping the friendship completely. If you find that it’s time to move on, it’ll most likely naturally fade out. Just don’t overthink it. Relationships have highs and lows; they may ebb and flow a bit. It’s inevitable. Go with your gut. The right people are always out there.

Q: Some of my friends act differently around me when we’re in a group. They act like I’m not cool, and some of their friends don’t even know we’re friends. However, I really love them and we get along well when we’re alone. How do I bring this up to these people without creating tension and making them upset?
— Silent Partner

A: Be direct and upfront with them. You love them! So, they should love you back with the same vigor. If they have problems with it or take offense, that’s their issue, not yours.

Q: How do you best handle a breakup?
— Achy Breaky Heart

A: By not getting angry, as you might do something that you’ll regret or be embarrassed about later. Life moves on, so don’t dwell on it. If you have momentos that are sad reminders, get rid of them. Listen to some sappy music and cry if you want — heartbreak hurts. Spend time with your friends, just don’t talk about your ex. You might find closure in befriending them if it ended with mutual understanding. Just know that you’ll find someone better.

Q: How can we improve our learning for the future? What I mean is: how can we learn to be adults, such as learning to do our taxes, learning our human rights and learning how to manage money? I and many others want to know how to learn these things in order to secure success in the future. Could the school teach these topics?
— Forward Thinker

A: Bring this idea up with the Board of Education. If you are able to provide strong reasoning for a class of this nature, they might consider it. However, it may be easier to start a club with these goals in mind. You would first need to find a teacher that would sponsor and advise it.

Q: I want to pursue a career in herpetology, which is the study of reptiles and amphibians. There’s a professor at Bowling Green who seems to love reptiles as much as I do, and I’d love to get a chance to meet her. How should I go about getting in touch with someone respectable?
— Lizard King

A: Go for it! Try to accurately express your personality and love for reptiles by not holding back. Showing your interests will grab her attention best. Also, be forward with your intentions by asking how to best meet with her in person. I would send a message through post, as an email may get lost or buried in her inbox. You should go to your English teacher or WIW just to have a second pair of eyes read your letter or email. Good luck!

Q: Why are most students unwilling to accept evidence contradicting their personal beliefs and are unwilling to rethink them? I’ve noticed many students are dogmatic when it comes to fathomless discussions, which makes it incredibly hard to maintain an educated conversation.
— Thesaurus Boris

A: People have always been set in their ways and may be stubborn. We are all guilty of this truth. Are you sure that you have not, in fact, yourself been unwilling to consider other’s opinions? You might want to intervene in debates that seem to be going nowhere; be the mediator. People are entitled to their own opinions, so just don’t expect everyone to change.

Q: For several months, I’ve had a certain problem regarding being sexually attracted to a certain
mythological body part: minotaur hooves. I am quite concerned and confused. Why am I attracted to the hooves of a minotaur? This is a serious problem and I really need to know.
— MinotaurLuvr123

A: Well, I think it’s important to keep in mind that minotaurs are fictional. I’m just worried that you may follow through with illegal acts in light of this. I know there are online communities of people who dress up as creatures, so maybe it’s just a matter of expressing yourself. Just don’t give out personal information as cybersafety should remain a priority.

Questions edited for clarity.

Need advice? Look for Ask ARL forms posted monthly on Schoology to submit your questions.