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Breaking Down “Fangirls”

This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at PS Behrend chapter.

    Fangirls. Now, I know what you’re thinking, “Oh no, not them.” “Fangirl” has such a negative connotation these days that when you look it up of Urban Dictionary it says, “a female who has overstepped the line between healthy fandom and indecent obsession”. But, I’m here to tell you that we’re not all bad! I can openly admit that I am a fangirl and I have no shame in it. For years, I always hid the fact that I was a fangirl because I was afraid of what people were going to say, but the end of the day, I LOVE music. I’m love supporting my favorite artists and that’s what it is all about.

    Growing up, I was privileged enough to be raised by parents that loved music as much as I do. My mom loved the Backstreet Boys and Bon Jovi, and my dad is the biggest Beatles fan I know. Everyday I would hear a different song, by a different artist and a backstory from my parents that would go along with it. My youth was set to the tracks “Hey Jude” and “Livin’ on a Prayer” and there wasn’t a day when I didn’t hear my dad talk about The Beatles. Because of this early exposure to music, I was interested in finding new music and became invested into discovering new artists and learning about the music industry.

Nowadays, when people hear the word “fangirl” they cringe and think of those crazy teenage girls that cry over -what was- One Direction and Justin Bieber. Of course, I’ve gotten those looks and people have made comments about it, but in all honestly, you wouldn’t understand it unless you were one. People don’t understand that all we do is love and support the artists that we like and what most don’t see is that for some fans, this is how they get away from dealing with certain personal things. Ultimately, this is what brings them happiness.

Now that I’m older, I see a lot of the negativity that is often associated with fangirls. You’ll hear comments like, “Wow, I can’t believe she’s going to a concert dressed like that” or “She just wants attention.” There is also that assumption that if a girl walks backstage, then she’s “trying to sleep with one of them.” For us fangirls, the girls that love to go to concerts, that proudly wear these outfits, these assumptions are labels. Any girl that walks into a venue, no matter what she looks like, no matter how old she is, no matter what she wears, is almost immediately labeled. Now, I don’t know about you, but I think that’s wrong and very demeaning.

What some people don’t realize about us fangirls is that we’re the ones that give the artist the support they need. Belittling fangirls is not only making an impact on us, but the industry as well. We spend so much money on merch, songs, albums, tickets, etc. And at the end of the day it doesn’t matter, because we’re the ones that proudly support the artist and promote them.  The fangirls you insult are the ones that the artist you listen to is thanking at award shows. We’re the ones that are able to give the artist the fanbase and their fanbase title. We’re the ones that are letting the artist do what they love.

Music is a huge and positive factor in my life and it’s something that I am incredibly passionate about. Those three to four hours I spent in a concert are when I’m the happiest.  I love music so much, I want my career to be in the music industry and so I can hopefully work with the artists I admire someday. So please, don’t just stereotype fangirls. There’s more to us. Let us support the artists we love. Let us sing and dance freely at a concert without feeling judged. Let us be excited, happy, and believe in our dreams, but also let us be respected for it. Let us be the dedicated fans that we are because we’re lucky enough to find something that brings us so much joy. Let us be fangirls.


Photo Credits: 1 2 3 4

Abby Lawton

PS Behrend

Communication major at Penn State Behrend | ΘΦΑ avid concert-goer, frequent coffee consumer, and aspiring music publicist ready to leave her mark on the world. lover of fuzzy blankets, mascara, and sunflowers. 
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Kayla McEwen

PS Behrend

Kayla A. McEwen: President and Campus Correspondent  Senior at Penn State Behrend Marketing & Professional Writing Major Part-time dreamer and full-time artist Lover of art, fashion, witty conversation, winged eyeliner, and large cups of warm beverages.