As a teenager, fangirl became one of my key identities, it probably took over my identity above most other things.For years its who I was. I was obsessed with a theatre company called StarKid and I loved it.
Being a fangirl was one of the easiest things to be. It wasn’t really a concious decision, it just happened. It came with a community as well. Most, if not all, of my best friends at school were fangirls as well. We all had different obsessions but we understood each other’s passion for a group of people who we idolised and completely adored. I think that’s what made us friends a lot of the time. Being a fangirl made me who I am and gave me some of the best experiences I’ve ever had, meeting incredible new friends and having amazing experiences.
Coming out of that time of my life was weird. I think I’ve only recently accepted that the term fangirl doesn’t really apply to me any more. My obsession trailed off so gradually I barely noticed it until someone else pointed it out. It wasn’t until my boyfriend at the time told me that I wasn’t really a fangirl any more that I realised. I remember getting very defensive because it felt like my whole identity was being challenged.
I now accept that I’ve moved away from that time in my life. I still love the theatre company a lot, they made me who I am in so many ways. I think part of it is that I’ve grown up a bit and am now able to see the people in the company as people a bit more. Seeing someone from one of their musicals discussing sex in a youtube video felt almost like seeing a parent discussing sex because in so many ways they were who I grew up with. Now though I’m able to differentiate a bit more, I can enjoy their work without it taking over my life.
Learning how to be me without so many things that I relied upon during the years between 16 and 18 is something I’ve been learning recently. My identity is now a bit up in the air. I’m learning to be okay with that. In some ways, my faith replaced some of my obsession, maybe it was all me looking for a bigger purpose in life. Fangirl is something that I’ll always identify with, although it’s now more of a part of what made me who I am, rather than who I am and thats good.