There are people in the world who criticize you for being nerdy. That is a pretty well known fact. But do you non-nerds know that there are just as many people criticizing and evaluating you because you aren't nerdy enough?
(I decided to put a break because it got long a little rantier than usual. I apologize.)
There are people out there who get mad at you because you discovered something AFTER it became popular. There are people who get made because you only came to a fandom later in life instead of right when it came out. There are people who judge you because you only learned about something after someone else introduced it to you.
And I am here to tell all those people to shut their whiney faces. Let people love what they want when they want. I have a story to tell you about such a thing.
When I was a kid, Harry Potter was all the rage. OBVIOUSLY. Now, I gobbled up the first book in a fiery love and was excited to continue. The problem was my attention issues related to various mental ailments were beginning to present themselves. Anxiety is a cruel bitch and she ruins EVERYTHING. So I was never able to focus long enough to get through a book. I didn't finish a book from the age of 12 until I think about 18. However when I turned 20 and got myself organized a bit better (or at least coping) I decided I wanted to return to the world I loved. I had always watched the movies but there is a lot you miss, so I bought all the books and then boom. One week all 7 were devoured.
Now, I now consider myself an enormous Harry Potter fan. I have the tattoo to prove it. The problem is, I don't have the same experiences that the 11 year old fanatics had. I never went to a midnight release. I never discussed Harry Potter while running around at recess. I was a twenty year old buying a new Harry Potter book every day on my lunch break at a government job, while the cashier asked me how I liked the previous one.
People might think of me as a fake fan because I don't have the same story as everyone else. Same as Star Wars. My mom was strictly a Star Trek girl. I didn't Star Wars until I was 18 or 19 I think. But the new movies release got me super into the universe and made me was to rematch everything and get much more knowledgeable about the world. But the learning curve is so high and sometimes the people in the fandoms are not welcoming. (Harry Potter people are fine, Star Wars I am not too sure about).
So my request is this: If you find someone who is trying to learn about, get into, or get involved in a fandom DO NOT SCARE THEM AWAY. Just because they don't have the same "I loved it since birth" story as you, realize that the more people who love the thing you love doesn't make it any less special. I know there is a certain hipster desire to keep all your favourite things secret, but why not share the things you love with everyone? No one can destroy the thing you love as long as you don't let them. Someone else's opinion does not need to influence yours.
This got long, for no reason. I am so warm I think my brain melted and I went crazy.