Opinion: Pick me, choose me, love me

The issue with the “pick me girl” and the misogyny of it all

Avery Cameron

A “pick me girl” is described by Urban Dictionary as “a girl who goes out of their way to impress boys and make them seem that they’re ‘not like other girls’… when you see one, you’ll know she’s one for sure. She usually does this to be accepted by boys and be considered ‘one of the good ones’ if you say one of these things, congratulations! Nobody likes you.” The internet loves to hate these girls, and so do high school girls.

The term “pick me girl” encompasses many different behaviors, according to senior Kayla Poole, “A pick me girl is basically a girl who acts out for attention or for acceptance or approval of a group.”

Ask any student on campus if they’ve heard the term “pick me girl,” and they’ll all say yes. 

As a high school girl myself I feel obligated to share the misogynistic root of the term in order to diminish it from our vocabularies. The term is rooted in misogyny, hating women, young women in general, for being a product of their society, the product being the excessive need to please men.

Example of the term “pick me” in teens vocabulary. Making fun of a girl for her choices. Graphic by: Avery Cameron

I’ve already shared definitions for the term but the one that encapsulated the misogyny behind it is from the article “Women Who Hate Women: Dissecting the Trend of the Pick-Me Girl” from A Little Bit Human by Allia Luzong: “A pick-me girl is a woman who defines her identity by separating herself from the traits and interests that conventionally feminine women exhibit. While the pick me girl often actually enjoys the ‘masculine’ hobbies she engages in, like video games and sports, what makes the pick-me girl so infuriating to other women is her ‘better-than-thou’ attitude about not being feminine.” 

The acts a pick me girl exhibits are rooted in insecurity of not being able to fit the structure of traditional femininity. “The pick-me girl is a reaction, a defense mechanism to protect herself from the realization that her personality traits, interests, and habits are seen as unattractive in a woman,” Luzong says in her article.

According to the the inside hook article “The Problem With TikTok’s “Pick-Me Girl” Trend Is More Complicated Than You Think” by Logan Mahan, other examples of behaviors of a pick me girl may be;  “promoting herself as the cool, laidback chick who’s ‘not like other girls’” — a line so well-trafficked that it’s considered a TV trope.”

The “Not like other girls” trope is used immensely in “groundbreaking” and “feminist” chick flicks such as “She’s All That” and the more modern, 2018 film, “Sierra Burgess is a Loser.” The Twilight franchise is infamous for using this trope. The main character in the franchise, Bella Swan is seen as mysterious and different. She isn’t like other girls, she reads, she doesn’t dress “in style,” she doesn’t party or do sports, unlike the opposing character, the hyper feminine Jessica. She’s different, and that is one of the reasons the male heart-throb(s) fall for her. Girls nowadays who may mimic her behavior and mannerisms are seen as pick me girls.

The TikTok hashtag “pickmegirl” has over 1.1 billion views. Obviously it is a popular term, these Tiktok videos consist of content creators mocking “pick me girl” actions in an exaggerated manner such as calling herself “one of the boys” sharing the fact that she doesn’t have acrylic nails or wears makeup unlike other girls. I found some comments on these videos, most with thousands upon thousands of likes: “My blood is boiling” @wapekheadshot, “She’s just so different,” @jules.mariie, “This is painful to watch” @greys.potterandeverdeen. These are just some of the thousands of comments, hating on women who are, as I said, a product of our society.

Graphic displaying TikTok comments on a pick me girl skit. All are negative toward the “pick me girl.” Graphic by: Avery Cameron

Some bring up the fact that pick me girl actions can be cruel, like bringing down other girls in order to get attention from men. Sophomore Yessenia Fernandez brings this up in her interview, when asked to define the term. She says, “a girl who tries putting a person or another girl down just to impress her guy friends,” she continues to describe their actions, such as “point out her friends’ insecurities in front of guys, laugh over excessively about a guys joke or try to act tomboyish on purpose and put another girls personality down for being too ‘girly.’”

The term pick me girls is used so often in our society. I’ll be honest,  I’ve used it, my friends have used it, ask any Ventura High girl and they’ll say they’ve heard it or even used it too. But that doesn’t make it ok. 

“God I hope [people] don’t think I’m a pick me lmao,” senior Aliza Barroca.