A Stereotypical Letter to My Emo Freshman Self

A Stereotypical Letter to My Emo Freshman Self

High school is a difficult experience and boy did my emo fourteen-year-old self underestimate that!
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Dear Emo Freshman Me,

I'm writing from your senior year. Shocking right? Not that you're a senior, but that suddenly time travel has been made possible in just four years! Now, I know the question you're dying to ask yourself, "Self, am I hot yet?" the answer is simply "No." You're madly in love with your first boyfriend, right? Snap out of it! You can't let men dictate your life early on. The relationship will eventually make you feel tied down. When you're out of it, don't crawl back three times because he doesn't want you anymore. Don't be afraid to be alone again because:

A) You're fourteen. It's not a priority to be in love.

B) YOU'RE FOURTEEN, HONEY! A whole high school career is ahead of you. You have a wide opportunity to suck face.

C) It's for the best if we're being honest here.

You will love him when you're apart deeply. But that "loving deeply" can easily turn into an obsession and you cannot let four years of your life revolve around being caught on a freshman experience. You'll drive that relationship into the ground and annoy the hell out of your friends for three years. He'll mean a lot to you, and he'll hurt you a lot so don't lurk where you don't need to be. Put yourself out there because you deserve more than someone who only wants you for your rockin' body (the lightest you'll be in high school so cherish it).

Your friends will turn on you before they graduate. The reasons they desert you are simple but just remember: it is not your fault. You did not do anything intentional or sneaky or wrong. People leave for various reasons and just because you don't have a place where you feel you belong, that does not mean you don't matter to anyone. You'll care for them more than you care for yourself. Don't let yourself get in the middle of things you don't belong in or need to be involved in. Focus on your own mental health, doormat.

Now, your family is as regular as it can be. You're in for a wild ride your sophomore and junior year. Dad will get hurt multiple times. Surgeries, surgeries, surgeries! It may destroy you and your first semester grades, but think of yourself. Take some time for yourself.

Ground yourself. Remember who you are and where you want to go.

Where you want to go is DEFINITELY not Berkley anymore so stop trying in band. But also, don't give up on saxophone or guitar because your band teacher makes you feel worthless. Stop letting your boyfriend poke you while you play, nobody thinks it's cute.

Here is a string of advice:

Love yourself. You don't need to lose weight to be loved or to be beautiful. The internet will tell you that as a trend in 2014!

Focus on the future. You have so much to offer but you are required to narrow it down junior year (as told by every adult you know).

Intimate relationships are not important. Boys you're going to talk to will pretend their goods are gold but trust me honey, it's nothing but a musty swamp.

Don't let society's gender-norms decide who you can hang out with and how to dress. Your family hates you wearing dad's flannels and everyone will call you a lesbian sophomore year, but ignore it. Dress comfortably. You aren't there to impress anyone. Keep rocking those sweatpants!

Get involved. Pep rallies aren't fun and are ridiculous, but that doesn't mean you can't contribute! Maybe you'll actually have friends in your grade when you do it!

Don't open up so easily to everyone. That one group in your grade will leak everything you do causing people to try to fight you. Just be careful.

Do not allow the opinions of you define who you are.

Pick a school.

Get close to your teachers.

TAKE OFF THE BOTTOM EYELINER.

STOP DYING YOUR HAIR BLACK. YOU KNOW WHAT THAT DOES.

Love yourself.

Treat yourself.

Be your least-cringey self.

And last, but most importantly, do NOT like the Minions. So far, you've been successful. Even now you hate them.

Stand up for yourself and NEVER let anyone hurt you or push you around.

All of this sounds generic and rolling your eyes hurts after so many times, but snakes can't bite you if you don't go deep into the woods.

Your suddenly not-emo senior self,

Cammie.

Cover Image Credit: Cammie Breakfield

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There Is No 'Right Way' To React To A Shooting

Everyone is different.

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After the shootings this year in New Zealand, Brazil, and close to home for some of us Aurora, people have been reacting in different ways. With some offering their thoughts and prayers, donating money to help pay for the funerals of the victims, fighting for action in regards to ending gun violence, candlelight vigils basically anything that can help them in this time of grief.

There is no right or wrong way to react to a shooting — everyone grieves in their own ways. We should not judge one another for how we grieve in a tragedy.

People have been saying that thoughts and prayers won't do anything. However, maybe it can be a comfort to some people—a way to let people know that they are thinking of them and that they care.

Sometimes people may want to donate money or blood to help out any survivors who may have suffered from blood loss or create GoFundMe accounts to either help out with medical expenses or to pay for the funerals of the victims or even start charities like Islamic Relief USA. Donating your time and money is a good way to help out because you are making a difference that is a form of action you are taking.

There is also grieving in the form of vigils. One example of a vigil is this guy who makes crosses every time there is some kind of tragedy. Vigils are often a good way to remember the victims, to pray for the healing of the survivors, to talk about what they were like as people.

Some people even want to take action by demanding that the laws change a good example of this would be March for Our Lives, which happened after the Parkland shooting last year. This march was fighting for gun control or should I say changes in the gun laws America currently has.

Some people also do acts of solidarity, for example, wearing a hijab like the prime minister of New Zealand did when she went to go visit the Christchurch shooting survivors. My community college had something a couple of years ago called Hijab Day to help show solidarity with our friends. I participated, and it was quite an experience—no one should ever be afraid to be who they are.

There is never a right or wrong way to react, and no one should ever criticize one another for how they react. It's not a test where there is a right or wrong answer—everyone is different and that is okay.

No one should ever have to be afraid to go to school, go to work, or go to their place of worship or wherever they decide to go. Whatever we decide to do to make a change, as long as we are taking some kind of action, is good enough for me.

Nothing ever gets done by sitting around and doing nothing, so whatever it is you do, get out there and do it. As long as you are showing support it doesn't matter how you show it.

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