Adventures in Glee fandoms

Since I’ve been writing about Glee, I’ve been lurking and chatting among the more devoted of Glee fans. A lot of these fans are young enough to have parents my age. So, to say the least, it’s been enlightening.

I’ve learned to use Tumblr (kind of). I’ve learned what all kinds of new words and expressions mean. I’ve had so much fun sharing my delight with the most recent storylines, or arguing over character “ships”.

I’ve also had the opportunity to witness teenage hormones gone horribly horribly awry.

Now, I’ve been around the world of fanfic for quite some time. I’m used to slash fic and crack fic and sexually explicit fic. I’m good with all of that.

I remember being a teenager with hormones firing on all cylinders and having no idea how to handle it. I wrote dirty stories (in notepads, not on the internet) and fantasized. I chatted with my friends (over the phone or in person, not by email or Tumblr).

But for these kids, it’s all different. All their fevered teen fanatasies are on the internet. It’s searchable and crawled by Google. And they don’t write letters to celebrities anymore, they tweet them.

So this is where it gets a bit disturbing. Like when Blaine sang his grossly inappropriate song to the junior manager he was crushing on, these kids are going way overboard because they don’t know how to handle their feelings.

I have seen Glee fans tweet sexually explicit terms to their favourite actors. And these actors — well, they aren’t kids, but they’re not far off! — are being overwhelmed with these declarations of desire from teens and pre-teens. And they’re explicit. So much so I won’t repeat them here.

If you guys are reading this, try and think of the advice Burt gave Kurt. “Don’t throw yourself around like you don’t matter. You matter.” Sexuality is complex and exciting but it can be hurtful and upsetting too. Respect yourselves and your favourite celebs. They’re far more likely to reply to a nice compliment than a sexually explicit tweet. And you’ll feel better about yourself too.

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