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"Raise your hand if you can relate!"

I avoided twitter like the plague for a long time, not really understanding the appeal. However, like all other social networking fads (Friendster, MySpace, Facebook) I eventually gave in.  In the short time I have been tweeting, I came to the realization that what makes the site so addictive is that a single tweet is 140 characters worth of free therapy. It is a cathartic release to blast observations and moments of snark into the depths of cyberspace. My second realization is that it is a genius way to connect with like-minded individuals.

For Twitter rookies the “#” people put in front of certain words or catch phrases denotes a trending topic, or in other words, a topic that is being tweeted about frequently in the twitterverse. One of my favorite ones to chime in on is #BrownGirlProblems, because let’s face it, we have problems. Many of them. Overbearing parents. Nosey aunties. Being hairy. Connecting with people going through the same problems via twitter has shown me the silver lining, sometimes these problems can be really funny. Here are 25 of my personal #browngirlproblems:

1) Wearing shorts, seeing an aunty in the mall, then hiding behind the nearest potted plant until she passes by.
2) Flirting with a boy 24/7 via aim, skype, and text message, but when you see him at parties you are suddenly strangers.
3) Flirting at parties = your hands brushing while playing cards.
4) Going with a bunch of your friends to watch your guy play basketball counts as a date.
5) Dancing like a total ho with your girls at your friends wedding, until you realize all the aunties are staring at you..
6) Being with a boy for years, and everybody knows it, however it is a taboo topic to mention until he puts a ring on it.
7) Having a boyfriend on the DL for years, but still having to deal with your parents setting up “rishtas” for you.
8 ) Needing to wax/shave by the time you hit middle school, but not being allowed to until you’re in high school.
9) Being led to believe by your mother that tampons are evil things that can take your purity.
10) Ducking out of pictures at parties because you can’t have evidence of your hijinks floating around on facebook.
11)  Not-brown men thinking “Namaste” is a cute pick up line (it gives me instant skeevies).
12)  Every uncle wants to know what your future plans are, what your job is, and if you have one already, how much you make.
13) Every aunty wants to know when your wedding will be (although there is clearly no groom in sight, go figure).
14)  Family reunions mean being told you’re too fat, you’re too skinny, or you’re too ______ (insert some other completely unnecessary jab at your appearance).
15) While your white friends negotiate pushing back curfew, you have beg, plead, and fight to go out at all, and either end up giving up or sneaking out (heh).
16) You don’t go to parties, you don’t go to hang out, you go to “study.”
17) When other teenagers get into a disagreement with their folks, they’re being “teenagers,” when you do, you are too “americanized,” or “hi-fi.”
18) Your parents know where you are, they know who you’re with, they know what time you’ll be back, yet they continue to text you  “where r u baba” in 20 minute intervals the entire time you are out.
19)  You just shaved, and you’re wearing really cute shorts, you go inside a building and AC is on full blast and you can literally feel your legs getting prickly and goosebumpy. Ew.
20) Your non-desi boyfriend doesn’t understand why you can’t come over for Thanksgiving dinner, and why he can’t come over ever.
21) Hating going to the mall in middle school because while other girls go with their friends, you go with your mother, father, nani, and nana.
22) If you are taller than 5’6, you spend parties looking down at the tops of uncle’s heads,  and it feels strangely condescending to talk to an uncle respectfully while you’re looking down (way down) at him.
23) Having to dress modestly in 100 degree heat, while your brother/friend/cousin is running around shirtless and in shorts. Capris and T-shirts just are not practical sometimes.
24)  Having code names for boys, and getting the giggles when talking about them in front of your mother without her knowing. (I found in hindsight, I was not slick, and my mother knew exactly who I was talking about).
25) Having to split into two (both real and true) versions of yourself: the college “whitewashed” version that knows a long island iced tea isn’t really tea that is indigenous to long island, and the home version that eats rice and curry, slurps lassi, and watches hindi movies with the family.

Upon further thought, I’ll add –
26) Finding someone who is just as “in-between” as you that understands and appreciates both versions.

If you enjoyed these, you should check out #browngirlproblems twitter @Brown_Girls or go like their facebook page.  If you can relate, or have brown girl (or brown guy) problems that you would like to add to this list, please do so in the comments!

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