What makes a girl intimidating
Rookie is an online magazine and book series for teenagers.
Also, we’ve both been called “intimidating” by our peers, teachers, and parents, and all of them meant it as a compliment. A lot of girls we know have been called intimidating, so we decided to talk to each other about what this phenomenon actually means.
—Gabby GABBY: Do you remember what if felt like the first time someone described you as intimidating?
HAZEL: I was whining to a friend about boys not liking me, and he said, “I think guys are just intimidated by you.” I was offended—it seemed like a cop-out! A friend in high school told me that other people found me intimidating—she said it in a way that wasn’t insulting.
I initially accepted people telling me I was intimidating, but the more I thought it the angrier I got. At first I interpreted it to mean mysterious or unapproachable; since I usually felt so self-conscious and insecure, I kind of thought, I definitely used to get people saying, “Before I knew you, I thought you were a bitch.” That concerns me so much, because it makes me wonder what they were basing that assessment on—MY RESTING FACIAL EXPRESSION? Also, I felt that by calling me intimidating, people were trying to turn into something negative, as in “I don’t want to work in a group with Gabby, she intimidates me.” HAZEL: Oh shit, you’re right!
Just thinking about this on a deeper level, I think I’m just really weirded out that the way I see myself isn’t how others see me, you know? Like, immediately disliking another girl because you actually LOVE her outfit or something surface-y. When I first met one of my best friends, I didn’t like her because she was just like me.