I'm not sure exactly when in human history this began. But in modern society people have an unfortunate "default setting" where they seem to think that "what you do" (your job, what you study etc) defines WHO you are as a person. Rather than seeing it as what it is... an aspect of your life as opposed to being a piece of your personality.
FYI... people also do this regarding long lasting illnesses, permanent injuries and mental issues.
Which is why a lot of your initial interactions with people in the future will be questions about your work or studies and are limited to what THEY know about those things. Which is why so many questions will be restricted to what THEY deem are important strictly within the limits of their own knowledge about them.
Unfortunately, the amount of people who enquire about "how YOU are" and about aspects that do define you as a person will be significantly less. This is just an unfortunate aspect in modern life and common interactions. A lot of it is quite thoughtless.
Regarding expectations... my advice is just don't. Do things as best as you can at first. Try to get better at something you find difficult... even if it is just a little bit. Don't kick yourself too much when you don't do things as well as what you would like... but instead look at it as simply a confirmation of something you need to work on and be thankful that you have been given absolute proof as to what you should focus more attention on improving.
How else could you turn your weaknesses into strengths without access to this knowledge? If you really think about it, it's an advantage handed to you on a silver platter rather than a straight up failure as many people view it. This is actually how it works. This is what in the long run separates people who can "do" something... and those who are GREAT at doing them.
People that don't learn these things early in life, often hit the ground REALLY hard when it happens to them later and since they never learned how to get back up or to learn from it? Inevitable consequences.
So my advice is to ignore expectations. They are worthless and not actually useful in reality for anything. They hold you down rather than raise you up. Regardless of whether they are other peoples or even your own. Let them go and move forwards without them... and you'll benefit greatly in ways that will only become obvious to you later.
I'm sorry about your friend. Perhaps they would benefit from an outlet like BB suggested by a good friend?