This I Believe

Abigail - Falmouth, Massachusetts
Entered on February 10, 2008
Age Group: Under 18


I believe in individuality. Who is just, the leader of the group, a member, or an outsider? That question remains unresolved, and runs through teenagers heads every day. “I want to be in that group,” is all I ever hear.

I remember in 4th grade I was changing myself to fit in. Most of my friends were accepted into this one big group of popular girls, and I was left into the dust. I did everything they wanted me to do, change my clothes and my hair, but most importantly my personality.

I wanted so badly to be accepted into “the group.” The stupid things that I did then, I now regret. I began to change the way I spoke, and I lost my sense of humor. I became a mean, inconsiderate 4th grader. My grades even dropped. At the time, that was the “in” thing to do. After trying my absolute hardest to fit in, I had forgotten my true friends.

Close to the last day of school, I just gave up. I realized that I was the better person for being me. It wouldn’t have made a difference what I did, as long as I was myself. My true friends would always be there for me, just as I would be there for them.

As I got older, more and more of my friends were coming back to the original group, the ones who accepted everyone. They all told stories of the horrible things that they had to go through to be accepted, and even when they were redeemed “popular” they said that it wasn’t worth it, that they were all being judged all of the time. My friends said that they even had a group name given to them by all of the teachers. “The Girlies” was the name as I then found out. I couldn’t imagine having a name given to me just because of my friends.

Just think, next time you meet a group of “popular” kids, think, is it worth it to be one? I believe if I’m myself, they’ll accept me for me. Be yourself.