Everyone wants to find someone who is “unique” or “different,” right? Well, the upward rise of awareness of the “pick me, choose me” person takes this concept to another level. While the idea of wanting to be viewed as different in comparison to “competition”, the concept of a Pick Me revolves around the notion of being better than anyone else, whether that calls for shaming and putting others down or playing up the role of a “perfect significant other”.
This concept is seen mostly among girls and women, especially in the pursuit of gaining the approval of a male counterpart. The premise begins with the joke of the “I’m Not Like Other Girls” persona that was widely popularized as a meme by young adults who criticized girls who tried to up-play their lack of femininity to be liked by the opposite sex. Those who unironically used the term “Not Like Other Girls” were often seen boosting the fact that they do not identify with stereotypically female ideals, such as wearing makeup or dresses. The phrase creates a separation between women, distinguishing a clear divide between traditionally and stereotypically feminine women versus those who identified more as tomboy-ish and less “girly”. Categorizing women in this way constructs a hierarchy of the “ideal type” that women classify themselves in, which ultimately degrades the entire gender through a ranking system.
The Pick Me Girl stems from the same base concept: the opposite sex should choose the Pick Me over anyone else because they are “different” or “better” than the rest of the crowd. On Twitter and TikTok, the Pick Me Girl has become a symbol of women being misogynistic towards other women. Through TikTok videos, created with audio from an old Grey’s Anatomy episode where the main character says the words “Pick me, choose me, love me,” many users are taking the audio to mock those who actually bear this identity. These girls are said to make sexist jokes and call themselves “one of the boys” in comparison to their ladylike competitors. A Pick Me Girl sees any other female who portrays themselves in a stereotypical femme way, such as dressing up, in a negative light.
While most Pick Me Girls are seen as those who stray from the feminine agenda, they include women who slut-shame others or bash women who do not put their significant other (usually a man) above everything else. The hashtag “#TweetLikeAPickMe” parodies the attitude of Pick Me Girls by exaggerating views on how women “should” act. There are also many songs created that exemplify Pick Me energy, including “You Belong With Me” by Taylor Swift, which practically begs the male subject of the song to leave his girlfriend to be with the narrator. Another song that is representative of a Pick Me is “Hide Away” by Daya, which has been called controversial for slut-shaming lyrics.
Videos and songs all mimic and ridicule the idea of Pick Me personas, however, the concept of a Pick Me is terrible from the start. Demeaning one’s own gender for the sake of gaining validation from another person is appalling. Other than putting themselves on a pedestal, they belittle others who do not fit in their view of how the ideal partner should act. Songs, such as the ones listed above, along with cheesy romances from television or movies can amplify the need for women to be seen as an “ideal”, and a Pick Me persona may just arise from this. These art forms, which are very easily spread through social media, can build upon the notion that a woman must be greater than other women to get through her life and find an ideal partner. Whether spread through videos, music, shows, and more, the persona has been well-known for years, just passing by with different labels. Showcasing unique qualities and differences between women should not be a competition and should not be seen on a large scale through songs and films that can easily sway viewers to think a certain way. The concept of a Pick Me Girl has become somewhat of a double-edged sword where women knock down other women, whether it is a Pick Me criticizing others or vise versa. Either way, the internalized misogyny that has been ingrained into women is as visible as it has ever been through social media, music, and more.