What I’m about to say is not a request but an order.
You know that unsatisfying book that you’re currently reading? The one with too many adjectives and not enough meaning? Toss that aside. Grab your keys and drive to whatever store it is where you buy inked-up paper bound together. Go to the biography section. Pick up a plain looking book titled Not That Kind of Girl. Go to the cashier, have an internal struggle over the twenty-eight dollars you’re about to spend. Seriously consider spending it all on Taco Bell instead. Buy the book. And then, don’t stop reading until you have come to the enlightened realization that you weren’t the only awkward and perpetually-weird kid growing up in America.
Not That Kind of Girl by Lena Dunham is honestly some of the most relatable combinations of 26 letters to ever enter my life. This book is a compilation of stories from Dunham’s life that tells tales of love, loss and the natural pains that come with being a woman. Each story has a very detailed plot in which the small aspects of life are made to seem even more poetic than originally thought. These stories hit right into the mind of any young girl who went through life as maybe not-so-normal. Growing up, Dunham learns how to handle having OCD, being overweight, and just being overall different from the ideals of women that are projected onto us from birth.
The writing style is very sarcastic with jokes that made me huff-laugh in locations I probably shouldn’t be laughing. As a reader, it feels like her embarrassing stories become your embarrassing stories. And that’s because they are probably quite similar. While reading about her college mistakes, I found that I wanted to meet these friends. To live on a cool, almost obnoxiously liberal campus where people are constantly creating art and trying to grasp at the enlightened notions of what life means. Dunham brings her life into yours and she does it bravely, not leaving out any scarring events.
As a twenty year-old woman myself, I found this book extremely reassuring. I wasn’t the only one who had intimacy problems or who went to a therapist to discuss the fact that I obsess over every quality of life. Dunham captures exactly what it means to be a girl. Not someone who slaps on make-up and can casually guide through life having men swoon. But, as a human with a painful uterus, an even worse emotional pain, and maybe just enough wit to make themselves laugh.
So, thank you, Lena Dunham. Stay golden.