Updated: Nov 22
Many of us who grew up in the late 80's to early 90's, remembers the denim designers, Damaged and Used as premium brands. They were ripped, patched, and had a rough exterior, but if you had a pair of jeans, or better still the whole outfit, you were considered fresh in my neighborhood!
Psychologically speaking, why do we as a culture choose things considered unattractive or broken as what we fill represents us best!
Quite naturally, the answer that first comes to mind is because that's who we are. Our culture is filled with damaged, broken, and even used people. These are unacceptable adjectives coming from the outside community, but we too often embrace them about ourselves. Our story is perceived as a little more authentic the more dysfunctional we seem to be, so we play into those narratives.
To be fair, this is not a mentality that belongs to a specific race, gender, or economical background, this seems to be a mindset that we've adopted and agreed on to be the norm.
It made perfect since for those of us that grew up in situations where struggle and adversity felt like the most consistent thing about life, to walk around with tags that described what we felt about ourselves deep down inside. Whether the creators of these brands purposely marketed to us or not, we took the bait, ran with it, and made it hot.
Another reason for our continuation of these narratives I believe is pride! Adversity may feel like the familiar blanket, but overcoming the adversity, is more like the baby that grew up and no longer needed the blanket. Although some of us have reached that stage, and have been weaned off of the security that the adversity blanket provides, it's still nice to know where it is. Although struggle is uncomfortable, and beyond struggle there's often trauma involved, depending on the levels of adversity one has had to overcome. But for those of us who've made it through those situations, surviving becomes a testament to our strength of character. We wear this particular badge knowing that no matter what we've been through, we haven't been broken yet, even if we are a little Damaged,, and or Used!!!