What does it mean to you, that you are a girl?
To many, being a girl means the make-up, the hair, the clothes and that perfect size 6 figure. It’s all about the glitz and glam, and being from Essex that stereotype is bigger than ever, where people believe it’s a compulsory part of any girl’s everyday look to have a tangerine coloured spray tan.
Jodie Marsh, Amy Childs and Katie Price are now at the forefront of society for being ideal role models for young girls to aspire to, so if we don’t have the right length hair extensions or correct coloured fake nails then we obviously don’t fit the model of the idealistic ‘girly girl’ image.
So if we don’t fit this image then what about the ‘brainy girl’ image that being a girl is all about to others? The ‘Geek-Chic’ type. Girls are forever being compared to the likes of Charlotte Bront? for her magical writing skills that are known worldwide through novels such as ‘Jane Eyre’ or even Marie Curie for her phenomenal scientific experiments that won her many Nobel prizes, because these are the women that made a mark in the history books, women that thoroughly changed the meaning of ‘being a girl’.
But what if we girls don’t fit these typical images? What if we don’t conform to the stereotypes set by our society? Does this make us abnormal?
No, it shouldn’t and it doesn’t. Being a girl means so much more than the brains and the beauty, because ‘A Plain Jane’ has just as much to offer to society as a Miss World winner.
A waitress can change the lives of others just as much as a Neuroscientologist, because being a girl is about the personality; what you bring to your life and the lives of others.
To me it’s about being an individual that plays a valid and trusted role within my friendship groups and family; it’s about being there for the people who need support at difficult times and doing what I can to be the best I can be, whether that includes brains and beauty or not. It doesn’t mean from time to time we can’t be a little stroppy or have the classic diva moments because that’s just part of being a teenage girl.
But as long as we can put our stamp on society, however small it may be, then we’ve achieved so much since the days when woman were just society’s pretty little accessory and men were considered to be the almighty gender.
To me being a girl is about being whoever I want to be, not what society tells me I should be – and if a little glitz and glam comes with that then so be it, it’s up to me to decide.
Amelia, Age 15 years
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