For the longest of time I have been so desperate to fit in. To be wanted, to be remembered, to just be someone people would be proud to hang out with. I have always been the second choice. I’ve always been the “oh she bailed on me wanna go out?” option. Or the girl people would sit with at the benches because their friends weren’t there yet.
And honestly, this is a sick, fake, disgusting society we are in. People choose their friends based on popularity, then put themselves through the expectation of being as cool or as funny as them. Why? I have tried acting cooler, being funnier, and it is so tiring, so unnatural – but people still do it so that their ‘friends’ would hang out with them.
When I was in primary school, there was another girl in my class with the same name as me. One day the teacher told us that one of our classmates made some bookmarks for some of us. As the younger me, obviously I would judge my likeability by whether I get that bookmark. A few names were called and then I heard my name! But it was the other girl that had my name too. It was heartbreaking. It is totally unacceptable that as young girls in primary school, the teacher would even allow for this sort of personal discrimination to occur.
My teen years have seen me in a lot of self doubt and self hate. I wish I was prettier or taller, then maybe people would want to be my friend. I came to see that it was not about the looks at all. It was just the way society perceives people, and if you’re lucky you will be one of those perceived as cool to be around. People perceived as popular would naturally have friends because her friends would want to be popular as well.
In my life I have had people come and go, way too many times. Too many times for me to want to give a part of me to them. I ended up being detached, making sure I don’t create a connection with them, lest they leave and take a part of me as well. I never felt worthy. It has gotten to the point that when someone shows a shred of concern for me, I would simply brush it off as a passing remark, because I just don’t believe they would care.
My interactions with people become so superficial. I was convinced that they are around me because they found something about me that could benefit them, like me being good in studies for example. That really stressed me out. I constantly felt like I had to be helpful, or they would be disappointed and leave.
I almost never asked from help from anyone. I never told anyone how I feel, if I am upset or just want to rant. I know it doesn’t do anything but burdens the people around me and they would just rather leave me be. I didn’t want to be more unlikeable. Instead I found my release through other things – partying, studying, and boys, oh, many many boys. There was a point in time I went on countless tinder dates. I enjoyed the attention so much. I know that sounds slutty right now, but hear me out. I have been merely looked past for all my life, and for once I am getting matches on tinder every single time I swipe right.
I am getting comments on how beautiful I look, how interesting I am. When I go to a club, boys come up to me asking if they could dance with me. It felt phenomenal – it almost went into my head.
Boys just want sex, and I knew that. I would go out with them, and at the end of the day, they expect something, it was inevitable. But I enjoyed the attention so much I let them touch me even if I felt uncomfortable. I felt like “I didn’t want to waste their time. I didn’t want them to regret going out with me,” So I let them. The breaking point really came when this one tinder date completely ignored me right after the second meet up, because I told him that I would never have pre-marital sex. I broke, really. I never felt so disgusting and worthless.
Do I really have to be beautiful and sexual to get any attention at all? Do I have to prove to people that I am worth their time?
If anyone feels the same as I did, know that you are worthy. You are worthy whether you have fewer friends than that other girl. You are worthy despite your flaws. If people care they will make time for you, and they will genuinely want to know your feelings. They will go out of their way for you, and they will hang out with you because they enjoy being around you. If they don’t care, then they don’t deserve your time, because you are as worthy as anyone else, your time is as valuable as the time of others. If they leave, it is their loss, not yours, because you didn’t lose anyone worth keeping, they lost someone amazing.
These past few months I have learnt how to be comfortable being alone, being with myself. It is so much more worthwhile to learn to accept yourself, than to strive for the love and attention from others. Only you will have to live with yourself forever, no one else is obliged to.