I love how Jillian Venters makes sarcastic references in her book "The Gothic Charm School" about the "secret Goth Cabal" who looks out for people who are doing something "ungothy". If you have not read her book, you should! If you feel you are doing/wearing/thinking something that isn't considered goth, don't worry, the Secret Goth Cabal is not going to call you out on it!
Personally, even as a young baby bat, I never questioned whether or not I was goth enough. I learned to not worry about whether or not I was accepted by the other goths. Like anywhere else I went, there were people who liked me and people who didn't.
One thing that bothered me back then though and still bothers me today is that a lot of elitists turn their gothy little noses down on me because I am what they call a "perky goth". I can be loud, I probably laugh louder than most people in the room and I have a sunny disposition on life. In fact, while I do have a select few "morbid" art work hung on my walls, I mainly have cute darkly themed items about (ie Nightmare Before Christmas, glow in the dark bats, etc) I am hyper and I smile. A LOT. In fact, my perkiness is what makes me successful in my job as a receptionist. I am approachable. I make people comfortable. I smile! I laugh! I am not all doom and gloom. I do not take myself seriously at all. Life is too short! Granted, I may not be all full of life first thing in the morning but I am usually good to go after a coffee or two!
My advice, ignore the other people. In fact, feel sorry for them because they too probably feel they aren't goth enough themselves so they need to point things out on other people to draw the attention away from them.
If you feel like you are goth, you listen to the music, you love to dress spooky, enjoy the literature, etc, then you are! Please do not listen to that voice inside your head that gets you to question who you are. I once listened to that little voice that told me I had to "grow up", I ditched the clothing, went completely normal, even denied that I was affiliated with the goth subculture and it made me miserable. In fact, the happiest times was when I wore the dark clothing.
This kind of stigma is not only seen in the goth subculture but in real life as well. This is where I once personally questioned myself. Being a new mother, I was always judged (and still am) because of the choices I made. I bottle-fed because breastfeeding did not work out for me. I was judged for that and made to feel as I was a horrible mother because of it. My son is tired, didn't nap that day and decides to have a melt down in the shopping centre, people give me dirty looks. In fact, just today, I was telling the daycare lady that I am happy my son is being so well-behaved. I think he had the terrible-twos at three! She was surprised he was so well behaved when he was two(he had a different daycare lady at that age) and is happy he is growing out of the terrible threes! Another parent was there and who clearly heard the conversation started giving me dirty looks. The sneering started when we told my son to not close the door and he didn't listen. My son told us that he was told to always keep the door to the classroom closed, despite the other father there waiting for his son to come. Talk about the pot calling the kettle black, the sneering started at my son's "disobedience" for closing the door but his little angel refused to go see his father and left him waiting there in the hallway. Knowing this, I looked at that parent, smiled and wished him good day. Let them think what they want! I bet it made their day better and made them feel less insecure!
That being said, I am going to list all the non-gothy things I like and enjoy. I will be expecting the Goth Cabala to come and revoke my goth card any moment!
(1) I own a white car. Yes, white car, not black. It is not a hearse, I drive a Pontiac. Oh noes!
(2) I love and collect Hello Kitty.
(3) My son wears whatever he wants. Granted most of his clothing are dark colors, we do not put any restrictions on him. If he wants a Disney outfit or some other cartoon character, we happily allow it. He is not an extension of ourselves or our gothiness. As much as it is cute to have our very own little Pugsley Addams, he is his own person. We respect that.
(4) I like Marilyn Manson (MALL GOTH!)
(5) Where I live, the walls are white and I do not sleep in a coffin
(5) The ring tone on my phone is not Bela Lugosi's dead. It is the sound the T.A.R.D.I.S makes :)
(6) I wore white when I got married instead of black or crimson. I encouraged my bridesmaids to wear color. Not every Bridesmaid was goth and they did not match. We had multiple colored Bridesmaid dresses. Oh noes!
(7) I sometimes sleep in pink pyjamas (the top has Animal from the Muppets on it)
(8) I work in the Fashion industry but it has NOTHING to do with corsets or anything pertaining to the goth movement, in fact it is sportswear!
(9) When my son was younger, we played Rafi and Sharon Lois and Bram instead of Gregorian chants or Siouxsie. I am still proud to know all the lyrics to "Baby Beluga" and "Skinamarinky Dink"
(10) I don't own a black cat
What are your ungothy confessions? I dare you!
Thou Shalt Not, If Only I Were A Goth