‘Poisonous words flitter like demons sapping strength from The Garden Of Eden, the soft chorus of nymphs trapped in darkness. Burrowing through the nightless skies the birds pity us humans who love war but not its destruction. There are gaping holes in each of us that take us into a nightmarish vision of human consequence, where past sins revisit and engulf us in miserable darkness. We are weak and afraid, with clammy palms clinging to faith in desperation. When faced with death we are shrouds already dead, the waiting tomb swallowing us whole, the beasts already licking their corpse fed lips’
In an alternate universe we would be free from oppression and be gifted with basic human rights. We would not face constant subjugation to cruel words nor would we be forced into exploiting ourselves for human satisfaction. In an ideal world there would be nothing truer than happiness, the warm scent of bees suckling at flowers aplenty. But I am an idealist and in a world where war is the answer to all humanities failings I am swept away in a flood of hate.
I am the girl abandoned by society to make way for the ‘populars’ a genetically perfect species that uses their ‘biological superiority’ to hold power over the ‘weak’ and transform us into passive vessels. I am a vessel for human waste, the mistakes of humanities past emptied into my soul. But I have strength and it is a strength not dictated by vanity but by passion, flamed by societies hatred of my ‘difference’. Some may call me a social other whilst others may taunt and call me names laughing at my irregular features. But how can we define ‘perfection’ when beauty is in the eye of the beholder? Conventionally I am not perfect but it is my irregularities that make me stand out from the crowd.
The term ‘Social Other’ refers to a social stratification system that evaluates your standing in society in relation to class, gender, race and cultural or aesthetic ‘abnormalities’. Therefore as a working class mixed female with unconventional physical features I am seen as the ‘social other’ because I am not seen as a ‘desirable’. A desirable is another term for the ‘populars’ and with popularity becomes an almost immediate connection to class & wealth. It sickens me that we are defined by such personal labels and I am adamant to change societies mindset.
Most of you know that I was bullied as a child and even now as an adult I have seen false friends come and go. I had a friend at university that was incredibly beautiful and demanded attention from anyone that she met. The first year that I had knew ‘A’ she was sweet, kind and would make me laugh no matter how down I was feeling. Yet there was a disturbing undercurrent that made me question her intentions and I would often feel uneasy in her presence. The more I got to know ‘A’ the more afraid I felt and by third year I was to experience the real ‘HER’. I moved into a house with five other friends and one of them became romantically involved with ‘A’ despite her using him as a rebound. You see ‘A’ is your typical ‘possessive cling on’ who will never allow you to focus on anyone but her. She got angry when I went out with other friends and was convinced that everyone was after her boyfriend when the reality was the complete opposite.
Until this year it had never been directed towards me but I felt a rebellion in the wings waiting to strike when the time was right. I was right to be afraid for the accusations came thick and fast, blaming me for problems that had occurred in her relationship. She made up stories saying that I had been sleeping with her boyfriend and that we were unnaturally close when we were just good friends. ‘A’ and I fell out for four months before she began crawling back to me making me apologize for a crime I had not done. I told her boyfriend time and time again how dangerous ‘A’ was and how manipulative he was being but he did not listen. Instead he would run to her time and time again and come venting to me when she was becoming psychotic yet again.
‘A’ had hurt me and ‘D’ time and time again yet like a fool I took her back because I am a big believer in second chances. I wish that she never did, she ruined my summer ball, my graduation, a photoshoot, my birthday and worst of all two friendships were lost the day that she destroyed everything. At my graduation ‘A’ was my plus one and was even in my family photos despite me asking for her not to be in them. My photos are ruined forever and I can’t help but get angry when I see her obstructing a moment that was meant to be mine, determined to be the centre of attention. At the afterparty she invited her boyfriend and left because she was ‘tired’ when in reality she wanted to go and sleep with ‘D’. That is not even the worst of it, jealous of how many friends I had she set the ultimate vendetta against me.
As my work duties increased I was unable to see my friends (apart from the ones I lived with) for a whole month and although ‘A’ had promised to come and stay with me she never did. I asked her when she was free to meet but she ignored my messages so I thought it would be best to leave her because to my knowledge I had not done any wrong. One day from a photoshoot I was bombarded with nasty messages accusing me of seeing other friends without her and how selfish and inconsiderate I was to do so. Of course it was false and I did not need to prove my innocence but I told her it was unfair to accuse me (AGAIN!) when she had no evidence.
As psychotic as ‘A’ was she did not need any evidence to condemn me and set about shredding what little self-esteem I had left. In her eyes she was ‘better than me in every way and she was not ashamed to admit it and because of the way that I looked and acted bad things happened to me’ ( and yes that is an actual quote). She proceeded to tell me that I was egocentric, ugly and that noone could ever love or want me. That my illnesses and the abuse and bullying that I faced as a child was all deserved. I deserved to be taunted, to be told that I was nothing. I deserved to be seen as a ‘freak’ a plaything of the gods. ‘A’ took great relish in exploring every minute detail as to why I was nothing in comparison to her and ultimately ‘ her beauty’ was the key to opening doors. Yet because I was unattractive it meant that no matter how hard I tried I could never match up to her standards.
‘A’ was a master manipulator, an enchantress that could hold anyone under her spell and I fell time and time again until now. I am no beauty but I would never say that I was better than anyone else because it couldn’t be further from the truth. But I will say this: bullies are a product of insecurity and ‘A’ was insecure in her relationship with ‘D’ and wanted to bully me into submission in order to make herself look more desirable in ‘D’s’ eyes. The truth was that she was jealous of my friends, jealous that she had noone and I had more. ‘A’ is the type of friend that has to be seen as the best at everything : the most attractive, the smartest, the most desirable and above all the most likable. She may have been more attractive and desirable than I was but I had what she could never have… friendship.
To Be Continued….
Photography: Jumanna Khanom
Lipstick: Sleek Makeup
Eyeshadow: Urban Decay & Sleek
Eyebrow Powder: Sleek
Suede Trench: Ex High Street
Burgundy Vest: Forever 21
Mirrored Aviators: Asos
Skirt: AX Paris
Burgundy Lace-Ups:Ego Official
Tan Boots: New Look
Silver Sunglasses: Dresslinks