The Fear of Fitting In

By , Kings Park, NY
I watch her concentrated stare,
And ask why she applies her foundation and mascara,
Every morning on the mustard yellow bus,
As we drive over potholes and such,
And she says simply,
“Because it makes me beautiful”
And goes on to say how it covers up minor blemishes,
And widens her eyes,
And so I wonder if maybe,
She has Atelophobia,
The fear of imperfection.

And I watched them fix their hair,
And complain over lumpy ponytails and such,
So I told them how I wish I had hair as pretty as theirs,
And they surveyed me, up and down,
Then said simply “Thank you!”
And stared at themselves,
With puckered lips,
Must not be Catoptrophobia,
The fear of mirrors,
Then.

And I stared blankly,
When she asked me how to spell words like “orange” and such,
Words which coincidentally matched,
Her phony spray tan,
And I glanced over to,
The vocabulary quiz,
She had just gotten back,
Perfect score,
Must be Bathophobia, then,
The fear of depth.

And I watch her race on tiptoes,
Down the hall,
With chants of “heyyyyy girliesss!”
And sparkles and such,
And I wonder why,
They let her drag them around,
Like miniature terriers in stylish totes,
To the bathroom, the lunch line, through the hallways,
Everywhere,
Must be Autophobia, then,
The fear of being alone.

And these poor girls,
Must have it rough,
Surrounded by fears,
Seeming fine to their peers,
But I know better,
And my only wish is to be spared,
The insanity,

If only there was a name,
For the “fear of fitting in”
But wouldn’t that be pointless?
Because if there were a group for it,
A phobia, a name,
Then there would be others,
Like me.





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