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The Wessex Wire

The Wessex Wire

Dylan Mulvaney’s ‘Days of Girlhood’ stirs controversy

Transgender activist Dylan Mulvaney released, ‘Days of Girlhood” on March 11, causing an uproar across social media sites.
Photo obtained from Apple Music
Transgender activist Dylan Mulvaney released, ‘Days of Girlhood” on March 11, causing an uproar across social media sites.

Dylan Mulvaney is a transgender TikTok influencer who became famous for documenting her gender transition in the video diary series titled “365 Days of Girlhood.” On March 11, she released her controversial debut single, “Days of Girlhood.” 

Critics of the song accuse the lyrics of playing into harmful and untrue stereotypes of women. Lines about having to take medication, drinking and sleeping around are receiving backlash. In her weekly summary of the female experience, she discusses “retail therapy,” “pick[ing] up meds,” “walk of shame,” “can’t get out of bed” and “flirt[ing] for drinks.” Critics say that these lyrics reduce women to basic stereotypes related to consumerism, sleeping around and poor mental health. Mulvaney is being criticized for mocking women and has been accused of misogyny. On TikTok, where such a large portion of users are still in their youth and young adulthoods, these messages can have a negative subconscious impact. 

This isn’t the first time Mulvaney has received backlash. She has been harassed while working with major brands including Ulta Beauty, Nike and Kate Spade. After appearing in a March Madness advertisement for Bud Light in 2023, conservatives boycotted the beer company. Despite these challenges, she was featured on the 2024 Forbes 30 under 30 list. 

Supporters argue that no one would have a problem with the lyrics if another artist performed them. They are accusing the critics of being transphobic for dissecting the lyrics instead of considering it a light-hearted anthem. They also say that the song isn’t about all of girlhood and all women, but about Mulvaney’s journey to become a girl.

The concept of girlhood and the niche characteristics related to girlhood have been trending lately on TikTok. Users have been using the term “Girl Math” to justify spending habits and the term “Girl Dinner” to justify eating snacks for dinner. Many have responded to these trends by saying these phrases are OK since women are smart enough to tell the difference between a trend and just simply mocking women.

Both critics and supporters agree that the song is not a musical masterpiece. For or against the lyrics, the real problem is that the singing, beats and dancing just aren’t good. They believe the melody and amount of AutoTune on the track is what makes it terrible. 

Mulvaney herself posted a response to all of the hatred she received. She replied that she never wanted to make a career from this song and that it was just a fun project to celebrate her series. She was inspired by Cyndi Lauper’s classic “Girls Just Want to Have Fun.” Her overall conclusion is that she was just trying to make a fun song describing her experience with girlhood. She clarified that the “pick up meds” line referred to her hormone injections, evidence that it was describing her experience.

Whether a critic or supporter of the song, the music video’s views are over 800,000 on YouTube. Any profits from her song will be donated to The Trevor Project, a nonprofit organization dedicated to suicide prevention for LGBTQ+ youth.

Behind the Byline
Amanda Ippolito
Amanda Ippolito, Arts & Culture Editor
Amanda Ippolito is an Arts and Culture Editor for the Wessex Wire. She enjoys traveling and spending time with her cousins and friends. In her free time she is either listening to music, playing guitar or watching TV. Her favorite singers are Taylor Swift, Zach Bryan, and Luke Combs.
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