11 Annoying Phases You Went Through As A Teenager That Make You Cringe Now

As a teenager, I was an outcast. I wasn’t the type of outcast that made people avoid me or harass me, but rather an outcast who made it a point to NOT fit in. My sister, who is 18 months younger than me and was two years behind me in school, did the popular thing and did it well. I, on the other hand, wanted no part of that world. I wanted to be different and be unlike the rest. Thankfully, my outcast phase lasted well past high school and, even now, in my early 30s, I’m happiest when I’m left to my own devices.

But whether you were an outcast or something else, we all went through so many different phases as teenagers. And, to be honest, some of them make us cringe today, because OMG, you wore bell-bottoms during you hippy phase! In case you’ve blocked it all out, here are 11 annoying phases you went through as a teenager that, today as an adult, you want to burn the evidence.

  1. Artsy phase. Personally, I started my artsy phase in 10th grade. It was about that time that I realized humanity was the worst and it was just best if I stuck to the art room, a throwing wheel, and endless canvases and paints. My parents still have all those paintings and sculptures I made in the attic. Bless their little souls!
  2. Vegetarian phase. I became a vegetarian after reading Charlotte’s Web when I was 10-ish, I think. It lasted all through high school and college, and I was one of those holier than thou vegetarians to boot. It was only when I moved to New York City that I abandoned my vegetarian ways, although I’m not sure why.
  3. Soapbox phase. Ugh. This was a phase that my sister went through and I’ll never let her forget it. No matter what anyone said, she’d have some sort of input, more often than not steeped in false facts, and she’d just have to blurt them out and ruin any fun that was being had. It was so annoying to say the least.
  4. Hippy phase. Oh, dear. That phase when you only buy organic, drink free trade coffee, and think the Grateful Dead and/or Phish is amazing. You probably even had dreads, too.
  5. Indie rock phase. As a former college DJ, I went through this phase hardcore and am still bearing the battle wounds of it. It’s during the indie rock phase that your pretentiousness gets completely out of control. For example: “What do you mean you like The Beatles?! Are you deaf?!”
  6. Boy mad phase. It’s similar to watching a Tyler Swift video, but with probably even more drama.
  7. Goth phase. I can’t say that I ever went through this phase, but I know people who did. Black lipstick, white makeup, and fake fangs anyone?
  8. Attempt at “fitting in” phase. I don’t even know why anyone would go through this phase. Even when you’re in, you’re still always out at some point, you silly basic bitch, you!
  9. Jock phase. Whether it was your attempt to score on your own or score with a football player, the jock phase is real thing that happens to many of us. Because, I guess, wearing letter jackets is all the rage?
  10. Stoner phase. I went through this phase, and I remember nothing. Except for the important skill that I know how to make a bong and/or bowl out of just about anything. Literally, anything.
  11. Straight-edge phase. I dated a few of these and they were so obnoxious! Straight-edge kids don’t believe in drinking or drugs and prove it so by drawing X’s on their hands. Best part is that while some of them drew Xs in markers, others got them tattooed and are, more than likely, wasted in a bar right now as I type this.
Amanda Chatel is a sexual health, mental health, and wellness journalist with more than a decade of experience. Her work has been featured in Shape, Glamour, SELF, Harper's Bazaar, The Atlantic, Forbes, Elle, Mic, Men's Health and Bustle, where she was a lifestyle writer for seven years. In 2019, The League included Amanda in their "15 Inspirational Feminists Every Single Person Should Follow on Twitter" list.

Amanda has a bachelor's degree in English and master's degree in Creative Writing from the University of New Hampshire. She divides her time between NYC, Paris, and Barcelona.

You can follow her on Instagram @la_chatel or on Twitter @angrychatel.