….Yes! you read that right; and no, this isn’t a joke, or a new super hero movie I am plugging. I seriously want to talk about the Average Girl Syndrome. Because I am – well, scrap that, I WAS a victim of it.
The Average Girl Syndrome is a creation from modern society. In a sea of endless glossy ads, boisterous TV reality personalities, and polished social media influencers, many feel that they will never get to be like one of them, and that it is a failure on their part. In turn, they start to internalise feelings of inadequacy, or worse, end up with pre-existing negative feelings amplified.
Now enter the Average Alt Girl. The Average Alt Girl’s crime is that she is is neither visible or invisible. She is neither sickly skinny or sickly fat. She is neither completely lost or completely empowered in her life. She is overlooked in group settings. She is able to pretend to blend in at work, and in gatherings. She is introverted, quiet and get constantly told to ‘smile‘, ‘cheer up‘, ‘liven up‘ and most definitely gets the classic ‘You’re so quiet‘. She is not cool enough for the cool kids, but she is too weird for the normies. She has her own character traits which differentiate her from the mainstream, but because she is not a loud personality or over the top in her appearance, it makes her just another random boring oddball in the eyes of the world.
The Average Alt Girl is has no place in advertising or in social media, despite the fact that most marketing is aimed at her – aimed at selling her someone else’s ideals and aesthetics.
When I entered the modelling competition last year, I entered it with no aim or goal. I was enjoying the Whitby Goth Festival when I saw the sign, and I just did it for fun. I turned up on the catwalk day, sick from the Nexplanon implant’s nasty side effects, and blanked out on the catwalk. I was proud I did it, but afterwards I felt that something was missing. I had not represented my True Self. I had talked myself down from bringing an authentic this is me outfit, because my inner voice, society’s voice, told me I was not worth it, I was not alternative enough, I was boring, I was an Average Girl.
Yes, I am 5″4, with an office worker build (that daily 2pm KitKat leaves its mark innit!), I have a rather ethnically ambiguous face to most people, and I am pretty mild mannered, if not totally shy due to social anxiety. I work in an office, doing a very unexciting 9 to 5:30 to put a roof over my head, and I have to dress and talk corporate. This makes me a boring ass IT worker to most alternative people.
…But I also have a passion for fashion and music, and my own perspective on style. I love travelling and I have a very broad knowledge of cultures, as well as of the dark arts, the occult and many other interests. Sure, I am not covered head to toe in tattoos and piercings, and I haven’t got a pink mohican on my head; but I have a personality, and a style, and I have had enough of hiding it or been made to feel like mine is not as good as everybody else’s.
And so I DID. Despite being trash talked in the corridor for being “a newbie”. Despite being looked down upon for wearing non-branded/non stereotype conforming clothing. Despite being ignored for the most part due to extremely loud personalities in the room(a part from a Golden Lady who was oh so sweet to me).
I took my chubby, non-modelling, shy booty outthere and reminded myself that I have my place anywhere in the goddamn world, and that if alternative now means confirming to a stereotype, well I ‘d rather just be an outsider to it all.
This event reminded me that wherever we go in life, most humans feel the need to fit in. Yes, most, including alternative people. You don’t look the part that we think you should be looking like, you’re not one of us. And this is getting worse with social media.
One of my biggest struggles in life is that I DON’T have this need to fit in, and I NEVER have had it, which has caused me to feel alienated from everything for most of my life. Most days, I long to live in a cottage in the middle of a forest, just so I don’t have to deal with the judging glares and constant unhealthy social competitions that are rife everywhere.
My dears, whichever way you look at it, we are being conditioned to somehow conform – even within alternative realms. You gotta wear Killstar head to toe. You gotta have 5 piercings, 12 tattoos and wear your bikini in winter to be considered alternative.
I own my style and I own my vision. I own my standards and I own my approach to dressing. I own the odd sartorial mixes I make, and the fact that to me, true style is the ability to come up with an outfit that says who you are without having to open your mouth or just display your underwear. I stand by it.
I know this will displease many people in the industry (if they read it LOL) but I don’t give a damn, as I achieved what I sought to achieve by attending : annihilate the inner nefarious voice of society, and give precedence to my own.
Because after all, I am just a girl seeking to put the extra in the ordinary 😉
So if you have ever felt not good enough, or average, reclaim your power. Get that personality out. Be the true wierdo in your neighbourhood and most of all : feel like a million dollars when you do it 😉