As a child, I was often picked on. Most of it consisted of being called ugly everyday, but it was more than that. I would be hated and targeted for no reason other than I was there. At elementary school, in middle school (transferred), in every summer camp I went to. Almost nothing but bullying. This continued all the way up until high school, where it finally began to tone down and now, it has entirely stopped.
Because those experiences were highly unpleasant, I don’t like reflecting on them. However, after a lot of growing and developing, I think I realize why those kids picked on me, besides the fact that they were spoiled brats who weren’t taught respect. The reason? I was different.
Don’t ask me how because I don’t know how. I don’t know what about me separated me from them. What I do know is I have never been part of the “in” crowd. Never liked much of what everyone else like, never had much to say, never was interested in gossip. High school, my second one, seems to have changed this and I’ve been accepted as an individual, which I’m extremely grateful for.
However, I’m still not the same as them. I’ve discovered I have a lot of things about me that society as a whole would hate me for, if I were to reveal them. A nice little site I frequent has come up with a name for people who don’t fit stereotypes: a cultural rebel. The site defines it as “an individual who has a major preference or hobby outside of what is culturally expected of him or her.” While I’m not exactly “rebelling” against anything (and not trying to), I have to admit I like that tag. No, I would not want to be referred to as such in person, but I like being different and that I am going outside the norm of what culture and society expects.
Also, I’ve always hated being the same. This is why having to wear uniform in school bugs me so much, even though I understand it’s an attempt to keep focus on learning and not clothing. My school has also inadvertently thrown out their ability to enforce the idea of tolerance (seriously, how can they tell students to be tolerant of each other’s differences when they’ve got everyone looking like clones of each other? They can’t!).
Here are the things about me that put me out of society’s normal standards:
Rather than go into detail about those things here, I’m going to create a page about it. I do know that once I am out in the “real world” on my own and these things come to light, there is going to be a lot of pressure and I want to remember that I am happy to have these things about myself, even if others may not like them. In a way, I have already dealt with that pressure due to issue with certain staff at my school, but that’s nothing compared to what I may face when I am on my own.
I would like to remind and encourage everybody who goes against society’s standards that there is nothing wrong with you. You are fine. Remember, long ago, society’s standards were actually quite different from what they are now. Imagine how we would be living if there weren’t people back then who went against society’s “normal” standards and just sucked it up. My personal belief is that everyone should be free to live their life how they want, as long as their lifestyle does not negatively affect anyone.