In the United States many high school girls view their junior or senior year not as a stepping stone for great academic achievement but as the lead up to the most important night in their calendar. The school year, for many, is merely a means to gain popularity, participate themselves in a vast majority of activities and do anything it takes to walk away with the crown and the title of ‘Prom Queen'.
Why is this title so very important? After all, as soon as they have graduated, they will immediately sink into the immense anonymity that comes with starting college as a freshman. The answer normally lies in confidence, be it lack of or overload, and power. Some people, especially teenage girls, find it hard to imagine how the world will not cease to turn if they do not have the trendiest clothes, the coolest car, the most envied and desired figure and the most gorgeous guy at her side. To such girls, being picked from the entire school, by the entire school is like being branded ‘Super Girl'.
I suppose this need to be openly set above the rest is a natural and instinctive role that has been played since the first mammals walked on the planet. In primate groups there is always an alpha female, one who is the member of highest ranking of her sex. She usually wins her top spot by a means of persuasive campaigns (in which violence is not uncommon) and once she has reached the pinnacle position, she holds absolute control over the social group. This can also be said for the Prom Queen. It is a position of power. People will not only be at your beck and call but you are given unquestioned respect. Like the alpha female of the animal kingdom, the prom queen is most likely to be found near the alpha male. He will usually be a champion sports player, he will most likely possess a winning smile and he also will normally have a high ranked position in the social hierarchy that is high school.
Being such a respected and honorable job, it is no wonder that many girls are clamoring for the title. What does it take to be the best and what are people willing to do to go the extra mile?
There are many sites on the web claiming to have the wisdom that will launch you into prom queendom. They are overflowing with useful tips on how to transform yourself into a school monarch. Some promote the importance of networking, becoming friends with people who you would normally shun, joining clubs that you would steer clear of in other circumstances and getting involved in activities that you care little about. Many of the websites imply that to be prom queen, you must completely remodel your personality and way of life to win the prize. One even explains that you should not feel bad about spending less time with those you care about, as the final outcome will be worth the sacrifice. Is this really what people are prepared to do for this label?
Other web pages focus mainly on what you should look like to fit into the prom queen mold and give tips as to how to achieve the look. They describe the prom queens that we have all seen many a time in the movies all blessed with tiny waists, impossibly long legs, a perfect bust, flowing locks and flawless skin. The problem lies in the fact that not many people can boast all of these even with a lot of hard work. Taking this advice to heart and trying to apply it is surely dangerous to many teenage girls in a world already rife with anorexia and bulimia.
But, when all is said and done, prom queens are probably here to stay. Mothers can advise their daughters over and over again not to become lured into the flame of popularity. Teenagers will always want to be the prettiest and be seen wearing the nicest clothes. In fact that is something that will probably never leave them. They will always be flush proudly when someone compliments them on their choice of a handsome partner and, to be fair, which person hasn't acted in a slightly phony manner before, putting on a false front to get something that they really wanted. Perhaps everyone has a secret prom queen hidden within who wishes for the day they will win the no. 1 spot. Maybe the girls who have the title ‘Prom Queen' bestowed upon them are the ones who were brave enough to let her out.