This might be a bit random but today was the first full day of class for me today and it got me thinking. After going through paperwork and doing the normal first day “stuff” I was trying a something different with my read aloud, The Outsiders. I’m not going to bore you with the details of the lesson, but the main topic of conversation revolved around people who are considered outsiders.
I guess the question I’d like to pose is, why is society so consumed with the idea of belonging, fitting in, and normality? We could start with that age-old question of, “What is normal?” But that’s a little boring and I really don’t know/don’t care about the answer. I’m not one who is consumed with the notion of fitting in if it means I can’t be true to myself. It took me until I was about 36 to get there, but now that I’m there, I am not looking back.
In looking at societal areas such as the poor/homeless, race, religious affiliations, sexual preferences, different physical appearances, elderly, and countless other groups, why is it that society has a difficult time in accepting differences. Is it fear or insecurity? I can’t place my finger on it, but I think it’s a little of both. It still is difficult for me to understand though. I know the reasoning may be different depending on the group, but, regardless, why do we have to label?
As you can see, my kids got me to thinking. I don’t have and answer. More troubling than that is I wish it would stop. I’m trying my best to instill in myself, my family and those that I come in contact with is that first and foremost, we need to be true to ourselves. That doesn’t mean we shouldn’t/can’t change and strive in order to be the best version of ourselves. But that change shouldn’t take place because of the overwhelming desire to fit-in and belong because society says that we need to belong. I think it’s the pressure we feel from ourselves or others which creates some of the biggest internal conflicts we experience.
The strange thing is that I’m slightly conflicted too. In my hope for acceptance of all regardless of our differences, am I attempting to conform the unconformable? Wouldn’t that result in a person not being true to who they are, no matter how much I don’t agree with them? See the dilemma?
Until next time,