Celebrating 2 Years: The Best of Literally, Darling

It has been two long, fruitful, sometimes frustrating years since Literally, Darling first opened its proverbial doors. Within that time we have had writers come and go, gracing our site and community with their presence and personalities. We’ve had some unbelievably popular articles (oddly, two of our highest ranking articles are about boobs and bread. Go figure). But we’ve also had some stellar articles that didn’t get all the love we think that they deserve. Below, the  staff has gone back in our archives to pull some of our favorite articles from Literally, Darling. Have a favorite that’s not included? Tweet us @litdarling and let us know what should be included in our #2DarlingYears celebration.


 

“The Inconsistent Acceptance of Black Beauty”

By Lauren

I cannot begin to explain how much I loved this article. From the outset, I related to Lauren’s desire to look more like the way girls looked in mainstream media—smaller nose, lighter skin, lighter eyes—and the pressure to conform to eurocentric standards of beauty. It reminded me of how women of color often are not accepted for their features, but those same features come “in vogue” and in style when on other women, like tanner skin, fuller lips, and curvier bodies.

—Mayura

“Transatlanticism: A Very Long (Distance) Engagement”

By Amy

I can’t know for sure, but I suspect this was the first LD article I ever read. I likely clicked on it because at the time, I had a long distance engagement of my own. I was astounded by all the similarities of mine and Amy’s situations. We were both British women who met American men whilst studying abroad, we forged our relationships across a great distance, and we persevered through all the longing and heartache to make a permanent commitment. Amy so eloquently describes the pain of having to choose your relationship over your home country, and the anxiety that comes from being far apart every day. She also articulates the beauty of such a relationship. There is an excitement to being with someone raised in a different culture, of creating a family that is unlike both of your own, and, of course, being thankful every day just to fall asleep in the same bed. Rereading this article makes me so appreciative that it worked out for both of us.

—Jodie

“Let’s Stop Using The Word ‘Just’ To Justify Ourselves”

By Kristin U

It was the title that first caught my eyes. “Just” seemed like a word I’d been seeing a lot more frequently but I couldn’t quite put my finger on where I’d seen it. As I opened the article and read through I suddenly realized that I used “just” in everything: everyday conversation, emails, and texts. Almost as though “just” helped the listener, or reader hear me better or understand my perspective more. What I loved about this article was it was so simple. A small, simple self-awareness act one could do every day. It also felt empowering. As I read through my edited emails, and took out the “justs” in my texts, my voice appeared more confident and sure. I think people fear that they’re not being seen, or heard, or are unable to get their point across in a concise phrasing and by adding “just” it somehow conveys our image and thoughts better. This article was a good smack in the face, a wake up call.

—Samantha

“On Feminism: A Time For Platform And A Time For Pie”

By Maureen

I absolutely loved this article because it expressed what I often feel, being a woman in today’s society. I believe in equality in all facets but I also love traditional roles in my home. I enjoy cooking, I love to clean my house and I love to watch the men in my family relax at times. I enjoy taking care of my boyfriend and I also enjoy being a successful woman. In an era where the two seem to be contradicting, this piece explained it perfectly.

—Rachel

“10 *Awesome* U.S. President Facts You Wish You Already Knew”

By Hope

This is the first story of LD’s I ever clicked on, and I still love it. It’s funny, witty and downright smart. That’s when I knew I’d love LD forever—because at least somebody else there was on my level re: obsession with history facts.

—Haley

“My Boyfriend Is 27 Years Older Than Me And It’s No Big Deal”

By Rachel

So I definitely wrote the headline for this back when Rachel sent it as a guest piece, and while it’s a bit misleading (it’s definitely a big deal, but it’s not a dealbreaker, which is what I meant), it’s still one of my favorite stories LD’s ever published. I love that it’s honest and real about what it’s like to be in a relationship that’s untraditional but still full of love and trust and happiness. LD is all about exploring everyone’s different perspectives on life, and I definitely think this is a good example of that.

—Haley

“Our Hookups Mean Nothing. Is That What You Want to Hear?”

By Ella

This article is the perfect example of why I love LD. I spent a long time believing that I was the first person ever to have this or that experience, but all of the amazing writers in this community have shown me that not only is that not true, but that there are words for those experiences. My favorite line in the article is, “This experience taught me that the tragedy here is not that I felt something, it’s that the other person felt absolutely nothing.” In this new, millennial, Tinder-culture, we’re almost socially expected to not feel. I love that this article put into words the self-discovery we encounter when we ignore the feeling not to feel. Sometimes we do feel, and there’s nothing wrong with that.

Nicole

“On Traveling Alone: Thoughts From The Table For One”

By Katie

Have been putting off traveling for years, waiting for the right time and the right person to go with. My friends all have very different lives, with husbands, homes and children. How could I possibly find somebody to travel with? Katie braved it alone and ended up having a wonderful time, forming a strong bond with herself. She did it because she loved it and this is so inspiring to me. After reading this article, I went to a coffee shop on my own for the first time ever and sat writing, and I loved it. Baby steps in the right direction!

– Kate

“On Having a Bad Attitude”

By Hope

As a fellow curmudgeon and someone routinely having to curb my own bad attitude, I adored Hope for writing about what all of us who suffer from resting bitch face deal with every day. We are not made from unicorns and glitter, we are not comfortable with messy emotions, and we will be brutally honest. Perhaps that makes us a bitch, or maybe that’s just commitment to being ourselves. Either way, Hope wrote the anthem that all of us accused of having a bad attitude can relate to.

Katie

“Should I Have Kids? The Cray-Cray Edition”

By Rebekah

This is a question a lot of people struggle with, and I think Rebekah tackled it well (plus the related article, Antidepressants: My Water Wings). She has such a unique way of writing that makes reading about mental illness fun, but poignant (plus all of us at LD have adopted the term “manfriend,” a Rebekah-ism.) While it’s not something I struggle with, she wrote about her thoughts in a way that made me start thinking about an issue I hadn’t paid much attention to previously.

—Erin

“What It Means For The U.S. To Elect Another Bush Or Clinton”

By Bridey

I would be a very ignorant American citizen without Bridey’s News and Politics pieces to tide me over, and I’m reminded of this article any time someone mentions Hillary running for POTUS. I remember reading it and having this “AH-HA” moment. I haven’t quite figured out what this means for my 2016 voting but I’ll shove this in anyone’s face who mentions Clinton or Bush.

—Kelsey

“Being A White Western Immigrant In The United States”

By Jodie

This is a very new article, and I have many classic favorites, but this piece made me stand bolt upright (as I perused it under the counter at work, oops) and feel all the “YES” bubbling up inside me. I have learned that Jodie and I are basically the same personour situations reflect each other to a startling degreeand this article says everything, e-ver-y-thing, that I also feel about living in the U.S. as a British immigrant. She points towards how loaded the term “immigrant” actually is, and how Brits on the other side of the pond face our own, very particular problems. It’s gently worded but utterly potent. A must-read.

—Amy

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