High school: A drama queen’s fantasy

By J1 Reporter Anna Feldman

Marian is not Riverdale High or McKinley High School, but Marian girls still obsess over the perfect high school experience. Thousands of stereotypes teenage girls go through during their high school life, but watching modern television shows and movies gives girls the wrong idea of what life for them looks like.

Blake Lively is not going to be walking the halls of Marian at 21 like she did in Gossip Girl. Not every girl is going to find their Troy Bolton in high school like in “High School Musical”. High school is not a picture perfect four years. That is the reality.

Shows create an unrealistic version of life for teenage girls. 

Every girl has a life she makes up in her head: the perfect boy, the perfect wedding, the perfect house. They get these ideas from television and movies involving a female teenage character who lives the unrealistic picture perfect life, with no hardships and no struggles.

Adults have a better idea of a realistic lifestyle, but when they were in high school, girls felt and saw the sames things girls are feeling now about a picture perfect life on television, “My natural feeling is like envious, but now I see that I don’t want something that perfect. It’s not realistic,” student teacher Ms. Aimee Rischard said.

When seeing a picture perfect life on TV it not only makes teenage girls think, but adults question life on TV, “I think that it’s not good for girls because they don’t have enough self awareness to see that’s not how life is,” math teacher Ms. Megan Han said about seeing the lives of teenage girls on television. “The fact that people playing teenagers are in their 20s and the kind of cars they drive, and how they treat their parents is so different,” she continued.  

“Gossip Girl”, for example, is a show full of rich teenagers who do not have to work for anything. “Teens on TV also aren’t usually being portrayed as having a job and constantly attending school, which is what my life consists of right now,” senior Abby Hayes said.

So what should girls look at as realistic when watching television? If there is so many unrealistic choices, what should girls turn to for a realistic lifestyle? “Gilmore Girls portrays my life most similarly because Rory faces struggles that I face everyday,” sophomore Kyra Knudsen said. Kyra continued with the reality, “Not everything will work out in life. We won’t always have that story book ending.”

What girls watch on television can be tough to control, but girls can educate each other on what is realistic and what isn’t. “TV shows have drama and that shows that bad situations happen, but it’s a good lesson for us that we can all turn a bad situation into something good,” Rischard said.

Looking back at freshman year, girls were nervous and anxious to be in high school. Compared to a senior who was submerged herself in school, college, a job, and has more of an idea of a realistic life she wants. “I feel like the young girls watching are getting the incorrect ideas of what their lives should be like. This causes girls to strive for things that are unrealistic and ultimately being disappointed when they don’t achieve the impossible,” Abby explains.

How can society help teenage girls see life on TV as unrealistic? The answer is, you can’t. Society can’t force them to stop watching these unrealistic shows, but they can teach them to make a life for themselves, a life they love and respect without all the extra fluff a television show portrays.

Empowering young girls to stand up for themselves, show girls they do not need a man in their lives to be happy, and teaching them how to be strong, independent leaders are ways society can help teenage girls find their passions in life. Society can help young girls by giving them opportunities to empower themselves and others around them. The world can start to change if society makes one small move to help these teenage girls live their best lives.

At Marian, girls can continue to empower each other and continue to show the world around them, how strong a girl can be without all the fake news and unrealistic storylines they see on TV.



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The Network is the student newspaper of Marian High School, Nebraska's only Class A College-Preparatory School for young women.

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