Hiding Behind a Mask


Parmis Ramjbar

Students in an art class at Vista work in various states of masking.

Parmis Ranjbar, Writer

The majority of schools across the United States have lifted their mask mandates. While many students have adjusted to this new change easily, some are held back by a reason more than just contracting COVID. 

Though some students haven’t experienced any issues with the removal of the mask mandate, some are still held captive by their insecurities. “Ever since I wore a mask, it’s made me less confident and gave me the opportunity to hide. I don’t want it to be found,” said sophomore Gautaum Girish. 

The term “mask-fish” came from the social media app TikTok and is another thing holding these teenagers back. It started with a trend on the app where students asked other students to pull their masks down in front of the camera. The video of their unmasking would be published and the viewers would be asked to comment whether or not they thought the person unmasking was a so-called “mask-fisher”. 

The term refers to someone who people believe looks different or worse when not wearing a mask. “Wearing a mask for so long – it’s almost like it becomes a part of you…,” said Vista del Lago High School sophomore Sehar  Suleman, “It seems like with people talking about ‘mask-fishing’ and stuff–I don’t know if I would be taking it off anytime soon.”  

Although many people have been hurt mentally by this change, it’s helped many others. “Masks personally made me slightly more confident. But after I stopped wearing them, it didn’t take long to have that same amount of confidence.” said freshman Julianna Munoz.

Overall, the effects of masks have been on a diverse scale. There is little common ground where all students can stand when it comes to their feelings on the mask mandate being lifted, but it’s safe to say many students will need more time before they find the daily mask mandate alterations comfortable.