The Pressures of being a teenager in today’s society
Jennifer: head cheerleader, and captain of the football team’s
girlfriend. She has perfect hair, perfect skin, and there is no possible way to
deny her beauty. I try to tell myself that on the inside she is ugly. I know I’m
simply jealous, but I cannot help but detest her. She has everything. As for myself, I
have nothing compared to her.
I don’t understand why I feel sorry for myself. I spend all my time wishing
I was someone else. I’ve always been extremely insecure throughout my life,
and it has lead to depression. It runs in my family. My mother had terrible problems
with it. I remember her doctor constantly changing her medication in the hopes of
finding the cure that would work for her.
“Melissa? Melissa? Are you even paying attention?” My teacher demanded.
“Yes miss.” I replied, although, I was drifting off into space.
Today our lecture was about the many pressures of being a teenager in
society today. All this talk about being in or out made me think of the social changes
now occurring in the educational system.
I then remembered a conversation I had with my guidance counsellor. I was
feeling lonely and rejected, and this teacher told me that other kids, even the popular
ones, also felt as miserable as I was at times. Of course, I didn’t believe him. How
could all those girls, all those girls who had everything be unhappy? I would most
definitely be happy with all those cute clothes and better yet, cute boys. I would never
be miserable if I could change places with one of them.
After school that day, I went home, did my homework, watched
some television, had supper, and went to flip through magazines, the usual. I
wondered how all those girls were so thin. How did they manage to stay on such strict
diets? I envied them.
That night before bed, I looked myself in the mirror, and broke into choked sobs.
I try to keep it together, but I cannot. I barely slept. The same question repeated itself
over and over in my head… How could any one person be so ugly, and so fat. It was
plain disgusting so to speak.
The next day I noticed an advertisement on the front of one of my magazines. It
was an add about a modeling agency coming to my hometown holding auditions. The
entire week I debated attending the audition. I was aware that I would be out of my
league completely compared to all the pretty girls in my town. I was also aware of the
possibility of getting laughed at. A lost puppy, they’d say.
No I couldn’t go. I would make a complete fool out of myself. Of course that was
the norm for me, and I began to ask myself what was there to lose? My dignity, perhaps.
It was Friday and my day went on as usual. I woke up, washed my face, got
dressed, went to school, and finally the last bell rang. The hallways were scattered
with girls chattering excitedly about the modeling auditions. I simply ignored them
and headed towards my bus.
But then something hit me. Why not? Why not go to the audition? So I went, not
taking in anymore thought. When I arrived I was completely right about the environment
surrounding me. The prettiest girls in town were there, already laughing at me.
Exclusion hurts. Discrimination and rejection are painful at any age. The line up
seemed never ending. It took almost two hours to get in and audition. The auditors
asked me various questions such as: Are you healthy? What does modeling mean to
you? And so forth. They asked me about my weight, and if I had participated in any
fitness programs. At the end of the audition they suggested toning up, loosing some
weight, and would call in a few days if I made it onto the next stage. I knew exactly
what that meant. “Sorry but your too fat to be a model, thanks for trying out and
giving us a good laugh.”
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