On Teenagerhood

Stacy McCain has another wonderful takedown of a shrill, fat feminist (her own words.  “Fat,” I mean — “shrill” is redundant, but some half-remembered rule of composition made me put it in there.  By the way, did you know that the collective noun for a group of liberals is “shriek”?  A murder of crows, a shriek of liberals.  But I digress).  Anyway, he’s said it all about her, much better than I can.  I just want to add a tangential comment:

This is what happens when you eliminate adolescence.

Mrzx. Toal writes

It’s hard because when you grow up fat, you grow up believing that you’re not ever going to be attractive to anyone. You don’t even do this on purpose — the world does it for you. For me, they did it through fat jokes on Friends, fat jokes on Will & Grace, fat jokes on every single sitcom, ever, headlines on my mother’s Cosmo and Self telling me (I wasn’t supposed to be looking at them, but whatever) both that my sexuality only mattered as long as it was relevant to men and that being fat automatically made my sexuality irrelevant to men, “No Fat Chicks” bumper stickers, bullying in school, and rampant self-hatred and body-shaming in my family. I don’t think I ever had any agency in deciding whether or not I thought I was attractive until college. I just sort of knew, because the world knew, that I wasn’t. I was fat. How could I be?

Kiddo, I hate to break it to you, but this is normal.  Yes, when you’re 15, being sexually attractive to the opposite sex pretty much is the only thing that matters, because — pay attention, this is important — you lack the maturity, the understanding, the very conceptual toolkit to evaluate people any other way.

I was 15 long ago and far away, but I’m pretty sure that if you’d asked me back then where I would be now, in middle age, I’d say something like “getting ready to be inducted into the Hall of Fame, but needing to put on the ugly jacket in space, because I’d be deep into my second career as an astronaut.”  That’s normal, too, as are the ever-shifting identities — each of them The REAL You — you put on and off as easily as their characteristic uniforms.  Again, this was back in the Jurassic, but I’m pretty sure I was at least six different things my sophomore year: A jock, a nerd, a preppie, a burnout, a goth, and a skater.  I’m probably forgetting a few.

It’s only modern times where we think everyone must have everything figured out by the time xhzhe hits 14.  It’s awful, because it eliminates the possibility of change.  As McCain points out, all this gal needed to do was one simple exercise: The pushaway.  As in, push your ass away from the dinner table before taking seconds.  But that would entail personal responsibility, and when you’ve been made what you are by 14 — and nothing can ever change, not ever, until Society itself changes — what’s the point?

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