Don't Label Yourself | Teen Ink

Don't Label Yourself

October 7, 2018
By zuzkak SILVER, Paisley, Other
zuzkak SILVER, Paisley, Other
7 articles 0 photos 1 comment

Favorite Quote:
“Whoever saves one life, saves the world entire.”
― Thomas Keneally, Schindler's List

"Don't label yourself."


I can't count on both hands how many times someone has said this to me. Most of them mean well, most of them tell me it's because I won't be able to change it later. 


But you know, it's disheartening when you come out as a lesbian to your mother only to be told "No, you're not.", and later "Don't tell anyone, don't label yourself."


I want to be proud of myself, be confident in who am I, and I'm being told not to. Because I won't be able to change it later. 


But I will be. I can change who I am or who I identify as whenever I please. After that, it up to everyone around me to respect that. I don't care if I'm young. I know who I am.


My counseller called my mother in after I was caught self-harming in the school bathroom. She asked me what if I wanted to label myself. I said yes, I want to call myself a lesbian. She nodded, and remarked that it's funny how these days, teens want to label themselves so quickly. She told me when she was young it was all "don't call me that!"


That got me thinking, what is making us so adamant to identify ourselves so quickly? I came up with two ideas. Is it that the sooner we figure ourselves out, the sooner we can fight for our rights and others? Are we so justice fueled that it's a catalyst to our self-discovery? Or is it that we want to know who we are before we die in a school shooting, stabbing, terrorist attack or suicide?


I'm not afraid to admit, I don't have the answer. I simply don't know. But what I do know is, there's no shame in knowing who you are or what you want, or not. You can figure yourslef out when you're 13,67, or never. It doesn't matter. 


Just be you.

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