The Negative Preconceptions Surrounding the Prom Night

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Prom is like the Met Gala of highschool, it is your exit from highschool and it is customary to look damn good on your way out. I remember when I was a sophomore, a girl in my grade was going to prom with her cousin who was a senior and she asked me if I liked the dress she intended to buy. I said, “Sure, if you want to be eaten alive by the senior girls.” She was confused, which in any other circumstance I wouldn’t blame her for her. It was a perfectly “ok” dress, it wasn’t ugly it wasn’t showing too much but there was one major flaw with it. It was a long dress and she just a mere sophomore.

While the WCHS prom is exclusively for seniors, other grades are allowed to attend as guests. Year after year, it has been customary for underclassmen guests to attend the dance in shorter dresses, allowing only seniors to showcase their floor-length gowns. Many students see this as a sign of respect to acknowledge that it is a night for the seniors and the seniors should be getting all the spotlight. And while this rule is widely followed, it is not technically enforced. There is no punishment for wearing a long dress as an underclassman other than the possibility of a few glares and behind-the-back criticisms.

However, this unspoken etiquette is childish–especially on a day that is supposed to celebrate adulthood. With all the dress codes that are already in place for women attire, it can be difficult enough as it is to find a dress that others deem appropriate. So why is it really necessary to add another rule? It’s not like underclassmen guys have to adjust their outfits to differentiate themselves from the seniors. So why do women? Furthermore, this unwritten rule is not universal. Most high schools around the country do not have it. Girls choose the dress that they feel most comfortable in without worrying that the length may not fit into their designated class “guidelines.” Additionally, many other high schools around the country have a prom that is more inclusive of other grade levels–WCHS does not. The seniors already have their own prom, they do not need to wear different attire from everybody else just to prove it. This unwritten rule alienates the underclassmen girls and serves only as a reminder that they do not really belong at the senior prom. But anyone with an invite, regardless of their grade, is just as deserving to be there as anybody else. It may be an event catered to seniors, but this should not mean that every other attendee should be made to feel as if they are not as entitled to wear what they want to wear.

The bottom line is that as a generation that strives to eliminate unfair dress codes, we should not be making more of them. The same girls that call themselves a feminist tear down the younger girls in their school and for what? To enforce their superiority because they are seniors? It may not seem like a big deal, but for some, this catty rule means that they cannot wear the dress that they want to.

If a girl wants to follow the tradition and wear a short dress then she should be allowed to be. And if a girl found a long dress she really liked and wants to wear it even though she isn’t a senior yet then she should be able to. There is no need for hate and negativity, prom is supposed to be a happy, anticipated event. The pressure, the trashtalk, all the unspoken rules are completely unnecessary and it’s time to break some social norms.

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The Negative Preconceptions Surrounding the Prom Night. (2020, December 14). WritingBros. Retrieved November 27, 2022, from https://writingbros.com/essay-examples/the-negative-preconceptions-surrounding-the-prom-night/
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The Negative Preconceptions Surrounding the Prom Night. [online]. Available at: <https://writingbros.com/essay-examples/the-negative-preconceptions-surrounding-the-prom-night/> [Accessed 27 Nov. 2022].
The Negative Preconceptions Surrounding the Prom Night [Internet]. WritingBros. 2020 Dec 14 [cited 2022 Nov 27]. Available from: https://writingbros.com/essay-examples/the-negative-preconceptions-surrounding-the-prom-night/
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