Living and growing up on a council estate

FASHION, LIFESTYLE

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“People never make it from council estates” WRONG. “People from council estates are scum of the earth” BULLSHIT. “They’re all on the dole and do nothing for themselves” YAWN. People tend to judge and make assumptions as soon as you mention you come from a council estate. A lot of you who read my blog or follow me on Instagram probably didn’t have a clue I come from a council estate because I don’t look like the stereotypical chavy girl wearing crop tops with track suit bottoms and my hair in a side pony (however, believe me I did go through this stage at one point growing up haha). I used to be so embarrassed to tell people where I come from when they asked because I instantly thought they would have thought less of me and yes I have had some people turn up their nose at me but that instantly made me think a lot less of them as a person. I don’t care anymore, I love where I come from, I’m not ashamed of it and it’s made me who I am today. REAL. I appreciate things more and I’ve always had a lot of empathy for others since being a small child. I know what it’s like to have no money and grow up in the shit and I know how that feels for others going through the same thing. We take care of our own. My estate may not be pretty, it definitely has that grey concrete look everywhere, dingy alley ways and some graffiti on walls but there is a part of me that will always love that. It’s my home.

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For those who always think we sit on our arse all day this is also not true. I’m going to tell you a little bit about my Dad, someone who is truly amazing and I don’t tell him this enough. My dad worked since he was 16 years old and had to give up his second job to look after 6 kids. When my Mum died, he basically became our Mum and Dad all in one. He washed, cooked, cleaned, fed us, took us to school on time every morning, picked us back up and over all just made sure we had everything we needed to help us get through a dark time. I developed a lot of anxiety at a young age which gradually got worse in my teens and still to this day I struggle with it now. Being at college and having anxiety basically got in the way of me getting a job, and I really needed a job. Anxiety literally takes any energy and motivation out of you and it would make me feel so shit when an ex would just call me ‘lazy’ clearly never understanding. I got my first job when I was 19 after going through another rough patch of complete heartbreak because I wanted to prove to myself that I could work even if it was a struggle for me. There are so many things I am proud of and achieved which I never thought I would. My anxiety is a lot more under control and I’m able to enjoy my life so much more, I got into uni! (possibly the first person on my estate to go to uni haha) and I am so so so proud of my blog. Something I wanted to start a verrrrrrrrry long time ago but obvs had too many anxieties about it. But here I am, with a forever growing following and people who actually love to read my blog. I have met so many lovely people who I can call my friends through this blog and I’m so happy I kicked my lil butt to start this little page.

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Can I just say, It’s not all that bad living on a council estate y’know. I don’t want you to have a picture in your head of me working in the coal mine haha. My fondest memory was going to Wales every year with the family, being beside the sea with candy floss and ice cream and going to the fun fair. I remember going on my first holiday abroad and thinking ‘this is just like Wales but for posh people’ LOL it was only Benidorm. I remember playing out on the estate with the other kids who just understood me, making up dance routines to the Spice Girls and waiting for my Nan to come round so I could show her whilst she drank a cup of Yorkshire tea and buying the girls weekly gossip mag just so I could have the free lip gloss that came with it. There was so much fun and the kids I played with I can still call my friends today. I may not see them a lot and we may be into completely different things but they are always there whenever I need them and that is true friendship.

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Coat – Primark (similar) | Glasses – Depop (similar) | Band Tee – Forever 21 | Denim Flares – Forever 21

Luckily my Dad has cool music taste so I didn’t grow up listening to chav rave music. I grew up listening to The Clash, Sex Pistols, Human League, David Bowie, Rolling Stones which are all my favourite bands still today. Growing up listening to that music was the reason why I also had an interest in fashion, I didn’t want to dress like everybody else I wanted to look different. I didn’t want to have a baby at the age of 16 and be stuck at home on the estate, I wanted to see what was out there in the real world. I wanted to go to gigs and festivals and meet other people who wanted to do the same thing. I do get some funny looks when walking around my estate now, they look at me as if I come from other planet, purely because I’m wearing something they would never dream of wearing. But I still NEVER feel intimidated walking past a gang of lads because deep down I’m still the same old lil Starr who once used to speak to those gangs of lads. It’s nice to see them sometimes and be greeted with “Alright Starr!” instead of an intimidated look. Some of them doing well with a job and car etc and some of them not doing so well but we all come from the same place and like I said, we take care of our own.

This post was a little bit more personal than the usual and I was a bit worried about sharing this with you but I just wanted to give you the idea that not everyone from a council estate is a piece of poo. Have faith in us! People expect nothing from us and this is why some of us end up staying in the same old place forever.

All ma love to ya,

Starr

x

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14 thoughts on “Living and growing up on a council estate

  1. You go girl !!. I’m from a council estate. Nowt wrong with that. I was very well brought up with values and ethics. Everyone knew everyone and it was a real home from home , I would even call the good people off ‘ my estate’ an extended family to a degree. A mutual respect amongst families was apparent and if you got up to mischief ( worst we did was knock on doors and run off or when we got to our teens, we used to buy cheap booze and get tipsy and then just joke about) then if any of the elders knew about this, then they would tell your folk’s as they were all looking out for each others kids. I bet most people from non council area’s don’t even know most of the families around the vicinity as extensively as the council estate I grew up on. Moreover, remember in reality when people say ‘ we’re buying a house’ it actually means that you don’t own it until you receive the deeds from the bank !! So don’t get ahead of yourselves people in private houses until them deeds are with you. I also went to Uni and achieved a 2:1 degree in criminology and sociology. On achieving this, I was told that ‘ now your middle class’ I was not amused by this comment …..Up the working class!!! And proud. When I look at my picture in my cap and gown, I’m really proud but still keep it real and know that it’s all ‘a system’ and whom ever plays it well can hold certain keys to certain doors, now if you choose to unlock the doors then that’s up to you and you have the choice. However apprenticeships are also as valuable as everyone is not always predominantly academic. We need people with different skills. I’d like to see a doctor build a house or fix your pipes and likewise I’d like to see a builder sort your teeth out lol. I believe that everyone in this universe was given at least 2 skills to achieve a living . Everything and everyone in its time and place for sure. I now have my own business and my lovely son is now studying Architecture at Manchester University. So proud of him …. oh by the way. I was a strong single mother too. Put that in your pipe and smoke it !!! People will always judge according to how they’ve been brought up and what they’ve been exposed to. Just get to know everyone from face value first. When I was reading criminology and I would pick up my books, the first thing I would do was look at the authors credentials and quest what… most that wrote about crime on estates hadn’t in my experience a clue what they were talking about. They just interviewed people and looked at stats bla bla bla. However I played the game of academia. I did infact learn from the experience of going to Uni and enjoyed it thoughougly, however the best knowledge is experiencing real life through meeting all sorts of people. So never mind what ignorant uneducated people think or say . Council or non council…WAKE UP WORLD. Well done girl and spread the word.

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  2. Hey Juliette! We will always have people branding us as the typical benefit street scum blah blah and its pretty sad. I just feel like more people should know that it’s not always how it seems in the news or papers so I decided to speak up for us! ‘The library’ room sounds so cool! and I wish your daughter the best of luck at uni. Thanks for your lovely words x

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  3. What a lovely post. I live on a council estate with my daughter and husband who works hard to support us. We’re not ‘typical’ estate types either – we have a room we call ‘the library’ which contains literally thousands of books, our music is very similar to yours (my daughter’s first word was ‘Bowie’) and I’m an author. My daughter worked hard at school and is now studying at a very prestigious university, and is fiercely proud of her background.

    The Daily Mails and Katie Hopkins of this world will always stick by their hackneyed, ignorant views of council estates and the people who live on them, but in the real world bright, warm, hard-working people (not one of my neighbours is a Benefits Street workshy stereotype!) continue to look after their families and forge stellar futures. There’s nothing more delicious than defying expectations!

    The very best of luck for your own fabulous future – and by the way, your dad sounds totally wonderful 🙂

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  4. Love this post!So relatable!! And so brave of you to share something so personal! Love your blog, keep up the great work!!

    Liked by 1 person

  5. I love this post, I think that where we grow up brings such a unique perspective to our lives. You should never be (or be made to feel) ashamed of where you came from, because it is a big part of what makes you who you are today!

    I am lucky enough to have grown up in several very different places throughout my country, and there are people from all over the spectrum from each one. It has been really interesting to keep in touch, and see the directions my life may have gone, had I stayed in any one of those areas. Even though all those people are from different places, and very different, where they are from doesn’t make them any less, or more worth knowing.

    Anyways, this was a great post and I’m glad that you’re using your platform as a blogger to call attention to it! You don’t see that very often, and I super respect it.

    -Mackenzie
    http://www.kenzywho.com

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  6. 1. I never said I was different. 2. I still live on a council estate. 3. I wanted to write this so people can relate and not many bloggers cover this topic. 4. Lots of people are relating and loving this post 5. show your name you coward.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Yawn, there are loads of people who grew up on council estates. You want a medal for being different? More than everything you have just shit on people who are still there.

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