Why You Should Never Lose Yourself In A Fandom

as much as I love it when people love the living daylights out of the things they love, too much of good thing is bad for you. Fandom should never control your life. It can erase the better parts of you and nobody wants that . Here's why:

We all have something special in our life that brings us insurmountable joy. Something that makes us wake up in the morning and think, mother of pearl I need more of x. No, I’m not talking about drugs, you guys. I’m talking about the things that make us say out and loud, ‘I’m a fan of x” Whatever that is for you, you know what I’m talking about. There are just some things in this world that turn you into a giggling mess of hysterical glee. Or that bring out the seedier parts of your innermost weirdo. It’s all lovely and amazing and I condone all forms of fangirling (regardless of gender).

However, as much as I love it when people love the living daylights out of the things they love, too much of good thing is bad for you. So when do you know it’s too much? Well, personally, I’ve found that it’s when you let the fandom become more important than the actual thing you love. Fandom should never control your life. It can erase the better parts of you and nobody wants that (or should want it) Here’s why:

  •  No matter how much you love something, you should love yourself more
You will always be the most important thing in your life. And if you’re not currently,  you need to have a real conversation with yourself about why that is. This is Your life. You should always be your number one priority. No, I’m not talking about being  self-absorbed or entirely selfish. What I mean is, you should never put anything else before your own health (physical/mental) or happiness. No fandom is worth more than at least that much.
  •  If it’s bringing you down, walk away
Why should the thing that you love bring you down? Ask yourself this honestly. Why? Isn’t the whole fun about being part of a fandom is that you get to surround yourself with people who get it. People who love what you love with the same intensity? Why then should any part of it ever make you feel bad? If that’s the case you need to walk away.
  •  No one thing should define your live
You are not just a Kpop fan, you are not just a Little Monster, Beleiber, Directioner, Lovatic…etc, or whatever else you align with. That one thing does not define the whole of you. Don’t ever forget that you are worth so much more than that. You are a beautiful, wholly unique event occurring inside of the history of the ENTIRE UNIVERSE. You are not just a fan.
  •   Keep a balance
For all the hours you spend loving the life out of x you need to bring balance in to your life with other important things. Family, friends, crafts…anything that not only brings you joy but that helps you grow as a person. You shouldn’t limit your world to just the fandom.
  • Love it as much as you want but always put yourself first
I am a fierce defender of fangirls/fanboys/fanatics of any kind. I don’t buy the whole, “They’re crazy and need to get a life” bit. Nope. As someone who loves with the whole of my heart or not at all, I get it. And you should love what you love without a single shred of shame. As long as you’re not hurting anyone, much less yourself, go ahead and count all of Dean’s freckles or write sonnets about the profundity of Cas’s baby blues. Yes, that’s my OTP. Deal with it.
  • Never lose yourself in your idols, they’re people too (or characters or ideas)

Okay. This one is very important. Gather ’round. The thing that you love is equal to you. It is not more important, it is not more special. It just is. It merely exists in the same plane of thought as you. No one will ever be more important than you, nor you than another person. So don’t you ever put someone, an idea or any thing on a pedestal. They don’t deserve it. And trust me, that pedestal can often be a burden on that person’s shoulders. Imagine how hard it must be to live up to the expectations of all the many people who love you so relentlessly. Can you imagine the guilt of not living up to their expectations? I would cry myself to sleep.

  •  You are just as valuable to this world with or without the Fandom.

You beautiful fan, you. You are brilliant, amazing and worthy of great things. Just like everybody else. Just as much as anyone else. So don’t you ever forget that with or without x you are still amazing. If one day you wake up and you hate x and you can’t deal with the fandom anymore or you just outgrow it, walk away happily knowing that you are still badass.

 

I’ve been part of fandoms that make me feel like a pile of dirt. Why? Because I didn’t know when to walk away. I knew that being part of that community was too dramatic, too mean and I kept coming back. For some reason it all seemed so fascinating but the truth is I just didn’t want to be honest with myself. The truth was the fandom I was part of had taken over my life and I thought that if I walked away I would be completely lost. This couldn’t have been further from the truth. In the time that I’ve spent away from certain fandoms I have grown into a more confident person that knows how to keep a balance between the thing that I love, who I am and all the other things worthy of my time in this great wide world.

Go on and love the thing you love. Love it with all your might. But please love yourself just a smidge more, because that’s the secret to balance. Just love the whole of yourself just that tiny little bit more and fandom will never do you wrong. Now, go forth and flail, wail, and have a good time.
-Valerie