It would appear that every kid and their mother has seen the movie "Mean Girls." It starred Lindsey Lohan, Rachel McAdams, Amanda Seyfried and some other people that are not popular enough to remember. Let's not forget about Tina Fey and Amy Poehler back before we actually knew who they were.
(Spoiler alert ahead for those souls who haven't seen the movie.)
We can all attest that at the end of the movie, the mean girls have a "come to Jesus" moment when they find their place in their high school niche. All is right in the world and the audience has a few laughs and reminisces on the times when they were in high school. Yet, is that reality? Do all mean girls eventually grow up? Heck no.
Thinking back on it, we all knew those mean girls in high school and could probably name a few right now. What happens, though, when those high school mean girls don't have a "come to Jesus" moment and remain forever-stuck in their ways?
That's right, they come to college. Maybe I was too bright-eyed and bushy-tailed to believe that when people came to college it was a fresh start to be the people that they actually wanted to be. I thought we'd all grown past that silly petty drama. I mean that's why we wanted to get away from middle school so badly. I soon realized, though, that mean girls still exist and it's not just in the confines of a classroom. They are everywhere terrorizing the lives of those so undeserving.
They are still stuck in the minds of their little high school selves believing that everyone worships the ground that they walk on and will belittle people into getting what they want.
I don't know who raised these mean girls, but I could probably give them an earful. It shocks me that at the age of 21, I am still hearing stories of hurtful and ruthless girls that truly believe the world revolves around them.
I wonder, has no one ever put these girls in their place? Has no one ever created an army and stood up for themselves? And then I realized: mean girls are so subtle that sometimes it's hard to tell if they are outwardly mean because it's so fake. I thought about how manipulative mean girls are and that if you did try to stand up for yourself, on your own, there would be a whole army ready to attack you and tear you down.
Mean girls are bullies. They could care less how their actions affect you. They could care less about the emotional damage their harsh words cause you. They could care less that their vindictive nature brings you to tears. They could care less that their poor actions and decisions negatively affect your life. They could care less about you.
I'm not worried about mean girls for myself. Over time, I have dealt with them, learned how to handle them and chose to stay clear of their tornado-like path. What worries me is when they target someone who is not strong enough to handle their torment. Someone who can't stand up for themselves. Someone who will break.
We hear all the time about suicides. Sometimes it doesn't directly impact our lives so we just shake it off, but what if your best friend was being bullied and you didn't even know it? What worries me is that these mean girls exist all throughout the ages, some more extreme than others. What worries me is that these girls will never be put in their place.
What scares me is that there will never be an end to their rampage, that their ways of bullying will become more discreet, their means of breaking a person apart will become so unnoticeable until it's too late.
What scares me the most is that sometimes things won't get better for the people that need it the most.
A favorite quote of mine, from a TV show I do not watch, goes as follows, "Never forget what you are. The rest of the world will not. Wear it like armor, and it can be used to hurt you." My advice, which may fall on deaf ears, is to gain confidence in yourself. Be strong enough so that no one's words will ever have the ability to tear you down.
And if all else fails, face these mean girls with the best advice that my dad has ever given me: "Sticks and stones may break my bones, but names will never hurt me." Don't let mean girls have power over you.