whenever i’m upset, people constantly remind me how beautiful i am. as if i somehow forgot that i am beautiful. they also remind me that i’m funny, and intelligent, and nice, but those are afterthoughts that follow “you are so beautiful.” yes, i am. but there is so much more to me than that. and when i’m having an anxiety attack and in hysterics and everyone is threatening to put me into an asylum, i don’t need to be reminded that i’m beautiful. i need to be reminded how to breathe, and that one step forward and two steps back will eventually make progress even though the math doesn’t add up. i need to know that i will be okay, one day, not now, but one day. i need to know that even though i’m not okay at this moment, thatis okay. i need to know that i am still loved by my family and friends even though i am broken. i need to know that it’s okay for me to be broken and i’m allowed to feel my emotions. i need everyone to know that shutting up and smiling isn’t something i can do at this moment, and when people look at me and say “you’re acting crazy, you may not be okay on the inside but you have got to get it together on the outside.” i need them to know that their idea of what is appropriate is not sufficient enough to hold back the pain i’m feeling and that smiling and pretending to be fine will not be okay, regardless of what our culture tries to tell us to do. i need everyone to know that emotions are something that i am going to embrace, and if that means i’m having an anxiety attack at my best friend’s house after my world falls apart and i walk out on my job and i don’t want to be awake anymore, then that is alright. for fuck’s sake, stop telling me i’m beautiful.
I haven’t posted a selfie in a while so here’s me yesterday.
okay so i got my conch pierced along with two cartilage piercings because i was bored (i get bored & get pierced or do something crazy like shave my head no big deal) anyway, so i got them done and we did the conch first because it was supposed to hurt the worst so we’re like okay go, so we do that and IT IS TERRIBLE. i was like oh damn that was a surprise, and then i’m like okay the worst parts over, then we go to do my top cartilage and FUCKING SURPRISE. since my ear doesn’t fold like a normal cartilage my cartilage is twice as thick therefore THE TOP CARTILAGE HURT WORSE THAN THE CONCH and I literally was just like holy fuck surprise much?! and my piercer was like yeah your cartilage is surprisingly thick, i wasn’t expecting that and i was like YEAH ME EITHER HOLY HELL anyway so then we did the second cartilage and it just bled a fuckton
my sister > yours
here’s a photo of me, right now. (yes i know my PJ’s are cute.)
anyway, i’ve been reading a lot of feminist posts / posts about bullying so i guess i’m going to share my story.
i had extremely long hair when i was a kid, my mom had a rule that “long hair is beautiful” and i was not allowed to cut it - i was only allowed to have trims. well, my mom’s a shit parent, and eventually i moved out and in with my grandma and in sixth grade, i got this god-awful long bob with a middle part. just picture it. terrible.
then in middle school i desperately wanted to be like ashley in degrassi with her goth-phase so i cut all of my hair off and started wearing a lot of black. and that’s when i encountered my first round of bullying. don’t get me wrong - i had plenty of friends. i was well-liked and a goofball, so people did enjoy my presence, but it’s always the hurtful things that stick. my lame little crush boyfriend thing broke up with me because someone told him i worshipped satan and that i said God wasn’t real. some people always managed to whisper about me in the halls, and i got so sick of hearing, “but why don’t you just grow your hair out?”
then i entered high school, and i had a few friends, but it was an awkward time for everyone. i sat at a table full of redneck guys because i knew one through a family friend and i had a crush on another, and every single day it was “why do you dress like that?” “why don’t you grow your hair out?” “why can’t you just be normal?” and i got so sick of it (even now, my face goes blood red thinking about the embarrassment i felt every day.) common sense would say, change lunch tables, but it’s freshman year and i don’t know a whole lot of people, plus they genuinely did seem to like me, they were ‘just teasing.’ but i ended up crying a lot.
enter sophomore year, i got stuck in an agriculture class with nothing but redneck guys, and the asshole quarterback (talk about cliche). anyway about this time i had cut 3/4 of my hair extremely short and had long bangs, and i was going through an i love katy perry phase. so anyway, i got overheard mumbling “i kissed a girl” to myself, big deal right? yeah, that caused an entire school year of bullying from the quarterback. incessant teasing, every single day. in front of and behind the teacher’s back. in front of the teacher went something like this, “so i know you’re gay why can’t you admit it?” and “why do you have such short hair, is it because you’re a lesbian?” and behind the teacher’s back went like this, “so the whole class knows you’re a fucking lesbian, why can’t you just man up and tell the truth? you’re a fucking carpet-muncher, and no one likes you anyway.” so i would go to the bathroom and cry a lot. sometimes i didn’t even bother to get up, i’d just cry there because i felt so stupid anyway i didn’t see the point in forcing myself to hide in a bathroom. sometimes i asked the teacher to make him stop, and the response was always, “alright cut it out and let’s get back to work.” a few times i went to the bathroom and had a panic attack, and about 3/4 of the way through it, i grew a pair and started being a prick. my responses were, “so what if i’m a lesbian, mad cause i pull more pussy than you?” and “who cares who i like, so long as it’s not you?” a few people started to take up for me, and i helped one kid in algebra so he always came to my defense.
but those words still hurt today, thinking about 10th grade year. i still remember crying every day and begging to transfer because of what people said to me. and i still run into the quarterback every now and then and he will try to be polite and say hello, because it’s a small town and we went to highschool together, and i usually tell him to take his fake politeness and shove it up his ass, because i can still fucking remember crying in agriculture and saying, “so you made a little girl cry, do you feel cool enough yet?!”
so anyway, then 11th grade ensued and my mom came back into my life and it was always, “why do you have to have pink in your hair?” and that’s when my grandma stepped in and started telling me i had to stop dying my hair and i had to stop cutting it so short (i’ve rocked a pixie cut since middle school). and anyway, after an ungodly amount of “why don’t you grow out your hair!”, “you’d be so pretty with long hair!” and, “i’m sure everyone would like you more if you grew your hair out!” i started to grow my hair out, and yeah, for a little while, it felt nice hearing “oh i’m so glad you’re growing your hair out” but eventually i get so sick of hearing that and not feeling like myself that i give up and cut it back to a pixie cut.
some people don’t even mean to be bullies, they just don’t realize. so anyway, i became this huge bitch in senior year and mostly just slept anyway, so everything was fine then until the school stepped in and said that there have been too many parental complaints about unnatural colors being a distraction in the classroom and i would be forced to dye my hair a natural color to which i refused and said it’s only a distraction if the parents of the offspring are related and they did not make me dye my hair because my grandma called and bitched at the school. my grandma used to beg me to be normal, but after a while she has this phrase, “if you like it, i like it.” which is a nice way of saying that she doesn’t like it, but she’s supportive so i don’t care.
then i went to college and everything was absolutely awesome.
then i came back home due to family issues, and me and my boyfriend (who i’ve been with for about a year, not that it matters), were talking about haircuts that i want, and i cut off my medium length bob to the new miley cyrus haircut. and after a few weeks i got bored with that and i shaved my head.
and i encountered THE MOST bullying i have ever experienced from “adults,” ever.
my grandma did not speak to my boyfriend for a month because she was convinced that it was his idea.
my aunt, who i’m extremely close with, told me that shaving your head stems from deeper problems and issues and that people “just don’t do” stuff like that unless they have some sort of psychological issue. then she suggested that my boyfriend was controlling me and made me shave my head to make me look ugly so no one else would find me attractive.
and then my hair stylist called and the first thing she said was, “WHAT THE FUCK DID YOU DO TO YOUR HAIR”
everyone at work was like, wow, i can’t believe you did that, but after a while warmed up to, “oh, that looks nice you can pull it off.”
but i was so upset by what my aunt and hair stylist said, and the fact that my aunt said “everyone’s calling and wondering what’s wrong with you and why you did that” that i spent my whole paycheck on a wig.
and then these same people were telling me how gorgeous i was, and how awesome i looked and how they can’t believe i shaved my head, and how the wig is such an improvement and how great it looks and all i kept thinking was about how everyone used to say that when i was growing my hair out.
so i stopped wearing the wig and embraced my hair. when people ask why i did it, i say i was bored. when people ask me what’s wrong with me, i say nothing. i am fine. you’re the one with the problem.
then my mom comes back for a few, because my grandpa passed away. and she has the audacity to tell me that that wig looks so much better and i get defensive. i tell her i look great either way, and she keeps saying yes, but you look so great with the wig. and so i jump down her throat about how just because i choose to wear the wig it doesn’t mean i don’t think i look good with the shaved head. anyway, so she tells me to wear the wig to the funeral, and i nearly lost my shit. my aunt and grandma had to step into that argument because i got so defensive and loud.
and now my hair is growing back out some - i never intended to keep it shaved, i just wanted to do it. the photo you see at the top of this post is how much it’s grown. but now my boyfriend is talking about how he missed the long bob i had back before i got the miley cyrus cut. and his manager is asking me if i’m going to go back to the bob. and everyone around me is asking how long i’m growing my hair, and how much better it’s going to look when it grows out. and i can pretend these things don’t bother me, but they do. but i just respond with who cares? bitch, i’m fabulous.
anyway, my point is, bullying happens. and it shouldn’t. the words people said to me in 10th grade year still bother me. the things my family has said to me still bother me. and yes, i do remember people telling me that i’m beautiful, that i don’t need to listen to them, but the negative comments are the ones that stick. so, even if you don’t approve of something, you can still be supportive of it.