Monday, February 10, 2014

Dear Teenage Girls...

Dear Teenage Girls,
I have a lot to say to you. Roll your eyes if you wish, but there are some things you need to hear.

When I was a teenager, N*Sync and Backstreet Boys were all the rage. Their concerts sold out, they were on every cover of every magazine, and you could get their face on pretty much any item you wanted- from sheets to mechanical pencils.

The internet was just becoming popular, but we needed dial up in order to log on. Which meant we were limited. Sure we could look at pictures and sometimes read stories, but it was nothing like it is now.

Now, you can spend as much time on the internet as you want. You have iphones and ipads and laptops. You can get wifi pretty much anywhere. You can get on any social media site you want to get the latest picture, gossip, video, etc.

And what I am seeing is this: You spend way too much time doing it. You become obsessed. Your life becomes totally wrapped up in the lives of those that you idolize. And at a certain point, girls, that gets dangerous. Because you begin to shut out the real world and the things that really matter, and you are focusing only on that one person or band. You defend every single thing that they do or say, even if you don't necessarily agree with it, just because you want to look like the "biggest fan" or the "best fan". You ARE ALLOWED to disagree with someone. It doesn't mean you love them or their music any less. You are a human being with thoughts, emotions, and opinions and you can own them. You do not have to hide them or change them just because a cute boy doesn't have the same ones.

It is important to have role models and to have people that inspire you. But when you become obsessed with a person to the point where you honestly don't think that you can live without them, that's when it is dangerous.

Social media can be used for really good things. I've seen funds raised for sick kids, cards sent to people who needed it, and many more. But it can also be bad. And I've seen a lot of the bad lately. You can't just spew off death threats to someone else because they disagree with you or because ::gasp:: they said something mean about your idol. Sure you may get mad- I get mad when I see nasty things about Taylor Swift- but would I turn around and throw back hate/ugly words? Nope. You ignore it as best you can.

Whether you choose to accept this or not, you are still a kid. Please, go be a kid...but be a NICE kid. Treat people well. You don't want to be remembered as the bully or the mean girl. You don't want to go the rest of your life knowing you made someone else's life miserable. You also don't want to go your whole life focused on your idol, waiting anxiously for their next tweet or blog post or youtube video or whatever it is you're waiting on. Go play. Be with your friends.

At the end of the day, girls, you are the most important person in your life. You should do what makes you happy and most fulfilled. You should go to sleep each night happy, peaceful. And you shouldn't have to depend on someone else to make you happy. When you live that way, you'll only be let down by their actions.

Don't stop listening to the music or watching the videos, just don't make it your whole life. You'll miss out on too much that way.

Love, Megan.

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