Dear Diary

February 22, 2012

A lot going on in the lives of our teen cabal this week.


I can wear whatever I want! Freedom of expression! It’s in the Constitution!

Yeah, so lately I’ve been feeling angst, angst, angst, like “I hate authority! I AM THE HOLDEN CAULFIELD OF MY GENERATION!” Why, you ask? One reason is that I recently got this gorgeous black lipstick from Manic Panic. I had my mom order it for me online and she let me pay for it and receive it before she told me I’m not allowed to wear it. Because it’s “skanky.” It attracts the “wrong kind of people.” People “will judge” me.

She compared it to letting a little kid wear sexualized, revealing clothes. My view on this subject is complicated. I think everyone should be able to wear whatever makes them feel beautiful and comfortable, but to the rest of the world, you are what you wear. I believe it’s better not to wear certain clothing until you are comfortable, emotionally and physically, and usually people don’t reach this point in childhood.

After thinking on it, my response was that what I was wearing couldn’t possibly be dangerous or destructive, and I also mentioned slut-shaming somewhere in the conversation. I succeeded in convincing her to let me wear it at home, and then out, but not with Doc Martens. She said I’ll look like a ’90s mall goth. That’s what made me the most mad—she didn’t want me to wear something for the sole reason that she personally does not like it.

I took a different approach and accused her of selective discrimination. Nobody should tolerate the idea that being different is only OK sometimes, right? And so saying that black lipstick is OK under SOME circumstances doesn’t make a lot of sense.

By then, my mom was on the phone, so she wasn’t listening too well and said, “FINE, wear whatever you want.” I hope she knows I’m holding her to that forever.

I should be glad that I achieved my goal, but I’m disappointed that my mother gave me what I wanted only out of exasperation. Also, she thought the conversation was hilarious, but I was being totally serious.

I’ve worn the lipstick once so far—with my white Docs. I also wore a flowing skirt, a beige lace top, and a flower crown. I think the crown got some weird looks, but otherwise, nobody seemed to notice or care. ♦


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  • MissKnowItAll February 22nd, 2012 7:11 PM

    Happy Birthday Dylan’s mom!!!
    Ruby- I get what you mean. I bought this lacy blouse from Top Shop and my mom freaked. saying that I would be giving boys the wrong idea about my personality. The way I think about it is that we all dress a certain way because it makes us feel good. Wether it means wearing a pantsuit or showing off cleavage, if you feel confident and sexy, go for it.

  • puffytoad February 22nd, 2012 7:20 PM

    It’s not fair to compare black lipstick to sexualized clothes on children! Children are, y’know, children!

  • queserasera February 22nd, 2012 7:22 PM

    I love the rookie background today, special agent cooper 4ever~ <3
    katherine, my friends still blush when the word 'vagina' comes up. geez, i dunno what to talk about with them (jk) but i get what you mean, about the anti-obsession. secretly i bet they're all thinking about it 24/7 like the rest of us hehe

  • Thepunkrocker February 22nd, 2012 7:33 PM

    Ruby, I wear black lipstick, but people are used to it because i don’t take myself seriously at times. So I am glad your mom let you wear it.
    Maybe post an outfit on your blog?

  • Chloe Elizabeth February 22nd, 2012 7:35 PM

    Oh. MY god. Katherine! Yes! I go to a school for the homeschooled (yeah, oh I know) so kids there, to put it nicely, are fricken weird. And sex is like, the ultimate sin. Talking about sex? Or even mentioning it = you are a sex crazed freak. Gosh! I quite literally said something along the lines “SEX SEX SEX SEX SEX! Now lets move on.” when somebody was judging me for asking a question about like, artificial insemination in Biology.

  • chilljill47 February 22nd, 2012 7:56 PM

    Ruby, your outfit sounds awesome!!

  • Jane February 22nd, 2012 8:12 PM

    I love how i can relate to each entry in a different way! All of the writing is so genuine and passionate I love it.

  • Marguerite February 22nd, 2012 8:16 PM

    RUBY! people in my family are always like ” oh dont buy that! then ull look like a …(hipster, goth, 50′s movie runaway…watever” and it turns out thats exactly why i want to buy it… and they don’t know theyre judging me and ya

  • I.ila February 22nd, 2012 8:24 PM

    In history class last year, my teacher asked “So what makes history go around?” Everyone said something like “taxes,” “money,” “laws.” I yelled out “Sex!” Everyone stared at me, then laughed, and my teacher agreed completely with me.

  • mirandab17 February 22nd, 2012 8:42 PM

    Ruby – I get where you’re coming from completely. I do. But your mum is right in a way… people will “judge you”, BUT you already knew that. You simply choose to ignore it.

    It’s part of human nature to judge one another. Whether you want to or not, everyone forms a subconscious or conscious opinion of everyone around them in a split second solely based on what they look like. How else would we form our opinion of them? We don’t know these people. And it’s not like we just stare at people blankly – there’s always a reaction.

    People judging you on your clothing, which will inevitably happen, is just plain stupid and I wish we could rewrite that part of our brains into intrinsic curiosity rather than sheer judgement, like “Who do they think they are? They can’t wear that!”

    That being said… what is it about black lipstick that makes you feel sexy? Man, I’ve tried it. Brutal look on me hahaha.

    And I’ve always wondered, please don’t take this the wrong way, I really am just super curious, why is it that you want to dress in such an extreme way? To ME, all opinions differ, this is coming from sheer intrigue, I always kind of imagined those who dress like that as if they are dressing for a reaction, so what draws you to this image? I just can’t help but think black lipstick and doc martens and a flower crown are kind of asking for attention? If I saw you, I’d think you had serious balls though. So still mad respect. Just curious.

    • Ruby B. February 22nd, 2012 9:09 PM

      My philosophy regarding the whole “looking for/getting attention” thing is: do what you like for YOU, and if you get attention, you get attention. If you don’t, you don’t.

      And I don’t know if I can say it makes me feel “sexy” per se, haha. I just like it, you know? You probably have a favorite pair of shoes or something. it’s sort of the same thing for me. I just love how it looks. I feel more confident and like myself when I wear the stuff I like. I would feel seriously self-conscious if I wore a very plain, simple outfit, because that’s not what I feel like inside. I would feel like I were living a lie, you know? It’s not how I want to present myself. Some people DO feel minimalist or solid-colored or anything else most of the time, and that’s awesome. It’s just not me.

      • Ruby B. February 22nd, 2012 9:11 PM

        (when I say “Some people DO feel…most of the time”, i don’t mean most people feel that way. i mean that some people do, for most of their time.)

      • Afiqa February 23rd, 2012 2:24 AM

        I feel the same way. When I wear plain, I feel like I’m wasting my teen years and feel more self-conscious. My step mum is kind of like yours too. She won’t let me wear what I want because she thinks of what other people think, but a bit different I guess since she wants me to follow trends too when I try to avoid it. but I’m kind of free to wear what I want since my mum hates it when people judge and lectures me on not caring what others think.

    • Anaheed February 22nd, 2012 9:13 PM

      I wore black lipstick when I was Ruby’s age, because I thought it looked pretty and cool. Probably the same reason most people wear anything. Different tastes, you know?

      • mirandab17 February 23rd, 2012 2:50 AM

        Beautifully said. In fact, I can actually really relate now because I have this so-called hideous floral dress from the nineties, but when I wear it I feel like I’m totally graceful and elegant, so it makes sense.

        Black lipstick, although it looks ghastly on me, may look damn fine on you so I can respect that. Or you might just like the look of it like I like the look of my grunge-y nineties dress. Woooo.

  • erin February 22nd, 2012 8:51 PM

    katherine, I know what you mean, but the opposite. MY English teacher told us one day, “I’m ashamed to say, I did see Easy A”. Like why? Cause it’s about a girl throwing sex in the face of her stupid judgy school? Yeah, I’d understand why you’d be afraid of that, considering you’re a 60 year old woman! Who is apparently still in the twelve year old state of mind and is appalled by sex.
    Also, Ruby, my mom is like, the same way. She doesn’t bug me about my clothes that often, and I usually just wear stuff anyways if she doesn’t like it. But she can’t handle it when I try to discuss something intellectual with her. She just doesn’t get it, which is disappointing.

  • Mustachefan February 22nd, 2012 9:02 PM

    Katherine- can I write a movie based on your life?

  • bicycle14 February 22nd, 2012 9:12 PM

    I couldn’t agree more! I doing a short play in school and there are a few ” naughty things” in it that I our school won’t allow. I was asking my scene partner ( one of the “coolest” guys in school) to cross out the word masturbation. He shyed away and acted like he never even heard of the thing! Come on, grow up!

  • Jes February 22nd, 2012 9:44 PM


  • Kristen February 22nd, 2012 9:57 PM

    Katherine, I seriously love your diary every week!

    I go to an all girls Catholic school and last year, we spent a few months on chastity. My teacher talked about how anything “past closed mouth kissing” should be saved for marriage. LIKE WHAT?

    This year, my theology teacher has a poster that says “CHASTITY: the choice of the next generation.”

  • emmaaday February 22nd, 2012 10:11 PM

    i can so relate ruby! i asked my mom about getting a nose piercing when i was 16 (a little more than a year) and my mom completely shot me down! and the most annoying thing is that it wasn’t for safety reasons or anything like that, it was because she doesn’t like them and she thinks others will judge me. she said that “she would never hire someone with a nose ring” ect. it’s how i want to look! what is so wrong with having a little bit of glitter on the side of my nose?

  • Anna Kathryn February 22nd, 2012 10:15 PM

    Cloe Elizabeth! I go to a school for home schoolers too. Some people were nervous about reading the the Scarlet Letter because it was “awkward.” Gag.

  • February 22nd, 2012 10:33 PM

    Katherine, I remember our English teacher in Year 11 or 12 discussing with us the lyrics to a particularly suggestive Prince song. I think the lesson was in how you can use words to hint at something without actually saying it. And I thought it was great… The teacher was also a musician, and the song was certainly out there for all to hear, and I guess we were all old enough. So I think I’m trying to say that it was one of those very important and very rare “cool teacher” moments. It was like he was saying that you guys are listening to this, you’re old enough, so I want you to know what’s really going on.

    And then as a bonus, I for one came out of that class just thankful for the lesson that if you listen to lyrics, they can be about something! I think beforehand I was pretty much like, “Oh that music’s nice, and yes someone’s singing along.” :-)

  • bridiebird February 23rd, 2012 12:47 AM

    i am 150% inspired to buy black lipstick now. ~.~

  • Susann February 23rd, 2012 2:01 AM

    “I am the Holden Caulfield of my generation!” – perfect statement!
    And I totally agree with Katherine… why not talk about one of the most important things?

  • WitchesRave February 23rd, 2012 7:39 AM

    Ruby!: Check out Take a Card by The Preachers They’re an awesome new band and the female singer in it wears black lipstick very elegantly…Yes it is possible!

  • Libby February 23rd, 2012 12:52 PM

    Happy birthday Dylan’s mum!
    And Katherine–in my English class, on two seperate occasions there was something about rape in Romeo & Juliet and also analysing the way Fifty Cent cupped his belt buckle {like, literally his belt buckle. not a metaphor for penis} in a sexual way.
    And I realised what my teacher was talking about before most other people–possibly because I read a bunch of stuff about Feminism and Hidden Metaphor and also because I am an English Geek. But now my class think I’m some sex-obsessed freak who thinks a lot about Fifty Cent’s penis. Yeah.

  • hollz February 23rd, 2012 2:09 PM

    Katherine – That’s so crazy. In my college class the girls are dirtier than the guys and talk about sex all the time. It took me a while to get used to it but now, I’m proud to say, I can stomach it. I should point out I never really get involved with these conversations. I just sit quiet and hope no one asks me if I’m a virgin. Which I am.

    Ruby – I wore my black patent leather Doc Martens everyday in 5th year. My mum was wary about letting me wear them in case I got bullied. However, it was fine. I think all my classmates were used to me dressing this way. I went through a phase of bleaching my hair, then putting streaks of colour through it. I also didn’t brush it for ages and ended up resembling Kurt Cobain. I just dress how I like and couldn’t bear the thought of dressing the same as anyone at school. Everyone seems to buy absolutely everything from Hollister.

  • sedgwick February 23rd, 2012 2:31 PM

    If I wore black lipstick or ripped jeans my mum would totally disapprove. Or maybe I don’t want to wear black lipstick or ripped jeans because my mum would disapprove, something I realised a little earlier in life. I like my mum, and I respect her because she is a good/cool person. I like to make a compromise of what I like and what she likes when I’m dressing. It means we all get along and she gets excited about my ‘style’ and we talk about ‘style’ in general, what she wore back in the day etc etc. My mum isn’t happy all the time so I try to keep that going. sort of win-win?

  • Abby February 23rd, 2012 3:37 PM

    I once picked out these shoes at Payless, and in the checkout line, in front of another customer and the checkout guy, my dad decided they were “ugly as sin” and “slutty.” I told him it wasn’t his opinion about them that mattered, it was mine, and if he didn’t like them so much then I would pay for them. He paid for them.

  • Jesss February 23rd, 2012 3:49 PM

    Happy Birthday Dylan’s mum!
    Naomi, that’s really lovely that you liked the school :) and I completely agree with both Katherine and Ruby.

  • Mom February 23rd, 2012 6:38 PM

    Dylan dear we’ve been an awesome team for 19 years. I’m happy and proud to be your Mom. even though you were a pill when you were a senior.

  • Sorcha February 23rd, 2012 7:04 PM

    the ensemble Ruby described sounds BOMB. pictures?

  • junebug February 23rd, 2012 9:26 PM

    I love all of your diaries, but I just wanted to give a shout out to Dylan in particular. I love your stuff! Even though you just focus on everyday things, like your relationship with your mom or the trials and tribulations w/r/t Crush Boy, I still find myself completely interested. It takes serious skill to pull someone in like that when you’re just talking about yourself.

    tl;dr You’re like the ridiculously cool second cousin that I would totally Facebook stalk in hopes of achieving more of a cool factor.

  • b.stro February 24th, 2012 2:12 PM

    Wow! Ruby’s entry sounds so much like me from the ages 13-15. I too had a very distinct penchant for wearing things that would probably fall into that kinda unfortunate 90s mall-goth category. Also, my parents weren’t keen on it, and therefore was faced with tons of opposition from them. I liked to wear black like all the time, and my step-mom told me, in a super serious voice, “You HAVE to stop wearing so much black,” totally all intervention-stats. I was really irritated & pissed off that the ppl who claim to love & except me as I am were basically telling me that the way I dressed wasn’t to their liking so I had to change into what they felt was ‘becoming’ &/or ‘appropriate’ for a suburban teenage girl to wear. Uuuggh, parents! Now I’ve just grown outta that style of dressing (I welcome color to my wardrobe w/ open arms!), but I still carry lil bits & pieces of it with me. I still wear my Docs, studs, safety pins as earrings, and even sometimes oodles of black eyeliner. I don’t think I could ever completely wipe that time of my life outta my wardrobe.

  • taste test February 24th, 2012 2:53 PM

    jesus, ruby, you are so cool. when I was fourteen, I would have never considered wearing black lipstick for a second. the most rebellious thing I did was wear bangle bracelets, which I thought was super-hip for some reason. I’m 17 now and I wouldn’t mind wearing black lipstick, but I can’t work up the guts to buy it, let alone wear it.

  • CarolineGrace February 26th, 2012 3:17 PM

    Ruby, my mom won’t let me get any more piercings simply because she doesn’t like how it looks and thinks its “unprofessional.” She knows she is being old fashioned but she refuses. ughhhhshes so strict.