I am still on that bad feminist track, while reading in the bathtub the other night I came up on an essay that struck close to home again. This time it was about the standards that women are to keep when it comes to having a likeable personality. This concept isn’t an original thought from myself, but was sparked by another one of Roxanne Gay’s essays.
Is a woman who does things for herself, and puts herself first.
Most of the women portrayed in media, tv, and in books, tend to be characters with personalities that are likeable. They are sweet and giving, always helping others. This ideal of being likeable is a bar that most women outside of media try to reach. We all want to be liked and approved of. However, being an unlikeable woman is more interesting, it is being able to do what you want and not being scared about what others will think of that decision or yourself.
Why being unlikeable is good
My own journey being unlikeable has been in the fast lane, been on hold, and restarted multiple times. Growing up in middle school, high school I was fine with being unlikeable. I was honest, I never did anything that I didn’t want to do. I skipped out on ski trips with friends because I hate skiing, even though I was the only one not going. I did get a few comments on how I was mean or that I was not being a true friend. To those comments I say, you do you, and I am going to do me.
Now my college career was different. The settings were new and so were the people, I wanted to have friends, I wanted to get invited to things. I wanted people to like me. I transferred to several schools, four to be exact, that was four situations that I had to do the whole “ I’m new here” bit. The last school was the hardest for me, there was actually quite a few people from high school that were also at the college, and I even had some of them in classes. It was awkward, and even though I went to a small high school it was still like they were strangers. After trying to be likeable for the first semester I decided that I had enough. I started to be me, which was interesting.
When I made my switch back over to the unlikeable side a few things changed. I actually gained more friends, the professors appreciated my honesty, and I partied it up. While things were going good there was also a few negatives. I was a target in class, always being called on because I would give an opinion, a real one. I was also feared in a way. Other women either respected me or were scared because I was abrasive, while men were either intimidated or intrigued.
“People say that Hillary is a bitch. Let me say something about that: yeah, she is. And so am I. And you know what? Bitches get stuff done." Tina Fey
Why be Unlikeable
Be your own person, if you are likeable naturally, that's great! If you're not likeable, be unlikeable and accept it. This is not a dig on anyone or any persanilty, this is just a shoutout to those who are nasty.
Being predictable is boring, for yourself and others around you. Not fitting into a cookie cutter will benefit you in so many ways, set you apart, and open new doors and close others. Be a woman that get’s stories written about her, push boundaries and be a mother effing star.