Not for a million likes! by Pixy13 ()
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The first half hour of my interview and photo-shoot was at best painful for all parties, those two girls we had watched finish their shoot and leave had clouded my mind. All the notes I had written down blurred into a big mess in my mind, I was languishing on that school chair in front of that screen with the green ribbon backdrops they had ready.
Until the photographer sat up and asked me a question I wasn't expecting or ready for, he looked at me "Do you remember your first boyfriend?" then suddenly I opened up a bit.
My first boyfriend?
That's a weird question?
Sure I remember him, but he was the first guy to dump me, though it wasn't that he dumped me that was the issue, more how and who dumped me.
I was 16 years old and just after new year this guy, Toby, took a interest in me, I had never had a guy serious about me before, so naturally I kinda freaked out a little, but he kept grinding away and eroded my suspicions away. Two weeks of bliss with a boyfriend, his family were nice and my parent didn't mind him either, he told them how "He could handle anything" when my dad asked Toby if he could handle my swings.
We were out on a date at the cinema when I had an episode over some popcorn, this guy knocked into me and my popcorn went flying as did my temper shortly after. I yelled at that guy and Toby shied away into the blackness of the cinema hallway, the dude apologized, he even went and got me some more popcorn. Later that evening the crash came, stricken with guilt of what I had called the guy, my mind crumbled a bit and as did Toby and his promises to my dad. Laying on the bed crying about how nasty I had been to a guy just for bumping into me, Toby went home to "Study" a few hours later I got a text, not from Toby but from his mother "Sorry Fae, but Toby needs to get off your Bipolar-Coaster"
My Bipolar-Coaster? What does that even mean? I wasn't surprised maybe just disappointed that he got his damn mum to break up with me for him!
Of course that sort of thing is the normal for most people with my kind of conditions, but that first introduction to what now would be cyber-bullying has worked in my favour. It's one of the newest problems we deal with now at the Davizioso, victims of cyber-bullying and social media pressure victims, it was part of my qualification and on of my specializations. As the pressure mounts on them for "New, Exciting and Extreme" content, the pressure on their minds ticks away, anxiety, depression, eating disorders and a general lack of self worth are the most common outcomes. Boys tend to do progressively more stupid things and the girls tend to start flashing more and more off themselves, it's quite sad really.
Shaun, the guy who runs the thrift shop? his daughter Jess, yeah the one with dark hair who you have been photographing for the "Digital Influencer" thing she does? She stayed with us for a month as the mental pressure of that life had given her eating and anxiety problems. Problem is that she is 18, so she can do whatever she wants? Of course you also can argue that she is a victim of her self created world? No one made her decide to start flashing her body and sharing it with the world? What started off as simple Cos-play soon escalated into something far sleazier, as her "Fans" called for more and her content had to get riskier and edgier. Jess and Gwen, the girl with her, started to do sets that people could buy, as they got calls for more they soon descended down until they did a set called "Master and Slave" where Gwen had Jess as a naked slave in chains. Jess couldn't go down any further and when Shaun found out he was outraged, he tried to get them removed from the internet but with both girls being 18 he couldn't do anything. What hurt him the most was not that Jess had done what she had, or that it was in his home, it was that whoever had held the camera for them, now held the power over his family. She came to the Davizioso for a month to try break the cycle while her dad wrestled with social media companies who would do nothing and could do nothing, she went clean for a while but she soon got back into her bad habits.
Part of me envies and pities them, they are confident in themselves but is that level of exposure worth the few hundred likes they actually get, all for a free pair of panties or a pencil case. They are almost trapped in a merciless cycle, with people and algorithms choosing for them how much they can like themselves today.
It's also why part of me admires Evelyn, how many 23 year old girls do you know who don't have a phone stuck to their hand or face? Let alone a 23 year old who doesn't even own a phone? I didn't know one either until I met her!
Just don't get any ideas though!
There is no way I would show my well rounded arse off for a million likes!