‘Not like other girls’ and ‘pick me girls’ phenomena
May 25, 2022
According to a TED Talk delivered by Antonina Stepak, the “not like other girls” phenomenon is when “a woman who considers herself unique because she does not fit into the narrow, stereotypical view of womanhood.”
Holmberg said the “not like other girls” concept impacted her as a pre-teenager and she has since worked to unlearn that mindset.
“When I was younger, I went through one of those like ‘I’m not like other girls’ phases,” she said. “I think I was like 11 or 12 when like, I realized that whether I was like feminine or masculine it didn’t really matter or impact anything and I wasn’t like going to be better or worse depending on how I wanted to behave.”
Crawford said she dislikes the “not like other girls” term as she believes there is no one way to be a girl and women should be praised in a way that does not bring down other women.
There’s not a single girl on this earth who is like another girl.”
— Margot Crawford ('25)
“No one is like other girls,” she said. “There’s not a single girl on this earth who is like another girl… it’s just putting women against each other and I don’t think that’s good.”
Piloto said the “not like other girls” mentality has been prevalent ever since adolescence and extended into college. Even as an adult, Piloto said many of her friends have yet to unlearn the mindset.
Similar to the “not like other girls” phenomenon, the term “pick-me girl” refers to a woman who behaves to appeal to men, simultaneously bringing down other women or enforcing stereotypes about women.
Holmberg said using the term “pick-me girl” is ineffective in combatting internalized sexism as it puts down women instead of tackling the issue.
“By shaming the people who have internalized misogyny, that’s actually not doing anything to help like, get to the root of the issue,” she said. “While it does bring awareness, a little more awareness to internalized misogyny, it doesn’t ever like explicitly mention the actual dangerous effects.”
Crawford said the term is problematic as it shames women who are friends with men or naturally more masculine-presenting.
“It’s used to make fun of women who are friends with men and I think … that’s women turning on other women,” she said. “I don’t think putting labels on women is good.”