January 27, 2021 The Newspaper Serving LGBT Los Angeles

DEAR AIDAN: Am I Too Materialistic?

Dear Aidan,

I’ve always been a truly girly girl! Ever since I was three years old, I have always been into beauty products, newest clothes and I LOVE my fancy brand purses! I love the feeling I get from taking care of myself looking good, but lately my sister (who is my polar opposite… the studious type) has been calling me out for being too vain and materialistic! She says things like “aren’t you a little embarrassed to be flaunting your wealth in this way? There are starving children in Africa!” Although I act outwardly as if I am annoyed with her, I am actually starting to wonder if she has a point… “Beauty Fades” afterall… Do you think I ought to try to be a bit more… “substantive?” Should I feel guilty? 

Dear CoverGirl

If you are not hurting anyone and you are not using your beauty as a weapon to harm or criticize others, there is absolutely nothing wrong with doing what makes your heart sing! 

Would you like to know the secret to happiness? I want you to consider the following reality! You say that you have been interested in being a “girly girl” since you were three years old, so you probably can speak from experience that we’re all born with things that we are naturally more interested and inclined toward. I have come to learn that the more you lean into these natural instincts and things that interest you, the happier you will be. The more you resist these interests in favor of being something that you are not, the more miserable you will be. 

With so much pressure from so many different magazines, books, personalities, influencers who are all interested in telling YOU  what to DO, it is easy to lose touch with what makes you joyful at the core. Everyone believes that their way is “the path” to make your life fabulous! But I am telling you – I have TRIED GURL. When I was younger, I felt like you SHOULD be a neat minimalist (I’m not), I SHOULD be more informed about politics (I really could care less), I SHOULD be less materialistic (I like things). It only made me feel “not good enough” at being good at something in which I had no interest in the first place.  

Follow Aidan on Facebook/Instagram/Twitter @AidanParkShow and check out his upcoming comedy shows on his website AidanPark.com

I am sure your sister is well-meaning, but she is giving you the advice that worked for her life from her point of view. In fact, it sounds a little bit like she is using her “intelligence” as a weapon to judge others to bolster how she feels about herself. Her opinion does not matter because only YOU know why you do what you do. You dress the way you do and get yourself done up the way you like because it makes you happy! That is more than enough. YOU do YOU!

I would also like to point out that we as humans are so conditioned to “look for problems;” that we can’t ever have anything nice! If we feel good about something, it’s like we all HAVE TO find a problem with it. You could have a nice purse and you have to start wondering if you are materialistic… You could have a wonderful makeup, but then you have to make sure you feel guilty on behalf of the starving children. You could get a great new job but then you have to make sure you feel undeserving and a fraud who shouldn’t be there. 

Enjoy your purse. Enjoy the make up, Enjoy yourself! And don’t let yourself or other naysayers ruin your good time! 

Follow Aidan Park on social media at Facebook/Instagram/Twitter @AidanParkShow and check out his upcoming comedy shows on his website AidanPark.com. Want Aidan to give you advice? Contact him via social media or email amy@thepridela.com.

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