Outside The Box…

You can’t help it. Before you were born, you resided in a small space with no windows. That was your total world. After nine months of being there, you escaped but still to a box of your parent’s making. They told you what was expected of you, how you were to act, what you were to think. Since they were so much wiser than you, you had no choice but to learn to think like they did.

Even in your educational years, you were primarily supposed to learn what others told you was important. Some of us learn to once in a while peek over the sides of our box, but few ever even tried to escape its confines. In some ways all this was a good thing. You needed to learn how to cope in the world around you. But then there were a few of us who just weren’t satisfied with the answers we were given. We stubbornly questioned everything we were told not to ask so many questions.

I kinda believe that asking WHY is a normal state for kids. From a very early age, most gobble up all the things they can, and still ask for more. The response we get for our “WHYs” is many times the reason why grow up to be as we are. Unfortunately, we are often taught our family member’s prejudices and our limited view of the world, and take them one as our own.

I think the teenage years are kind of a natural evolution where we rebel against things we are told to obey. We start to actually think for ourselves. Many rebel by wearing clothes and such that shock or parents. And then there are some to dare to question some of the things that our parents hold dear. Things like unknown prejudices and outdated beliefs. We begin to start thinking outside the box that our parents lovingly built for us.

A few of us were fortunate enough to have parents who encouraged us to think for ourselves. They realize that those who think outside the box are the future innovators who will bring significant strides to the future world.

Unfortunately, most are just not taught how to escape the herd mentality. We go through our lives letting others tell us what to believe and how to think. How sad it that??

6 thoughts on “Outside The Box…

  1. Thinking and analyzing data was important in my family, with my always-reading mom and former engineering-major dad. Good grades–and that meant as close to perfect as possible–were expected. Yet we were supposed to concur with our parents’ life experience teachings as to how to behave, and those included a lot of racist beliefs in my family. Spanking, hitting with a belt with little attention to which end was acting making contact, and shaming were the tools used, and I always had taken the route of the conformist, placating child . . . until I rebelled against my family’s racist beliefs. You’re right about one’s teens being the time to question what was taught to us. It was the late 60’s, and they’d taught me to be a kind and just person, too, which didn’t comport with going along with their views. I think my rebellion on those issues was a shock to both, and it caused a rift that lasted a long time. I was disappointed in them, and they in me, especially when I started dating a half-Sicilian, Catholic boy. Mom died when I was 25 and she was 45. How I wished she’d lived longer to see my husband parent our girls and be so supportive to me as I faced breast cancer, a host of auto-immune illnesses that compromised my health and mobility, and then later a devastating condition that required two brain surgeries. Dad never came around, but I believe Mom had already done so to some degree before her death as my husband completed law school. They’d believed him to be a braggart about things he would never accomplish.


    1. Thanks for the very heartfelt story, Linda. In some ways it echoes my own. I am so thankful now that my mother left me at the age of ten. I don’t know how much damage she could have done to me if she stayed.


  2. It is too easy to live a small life, one in a box of our own construction. Fear of not fitting in, of bring different, of not wanting to upset our comfort level, of risk…all are part of keeping us in a smaller than necessary space. And, that isn’t living, that is existing.


    1. Breaking out of our box is much harder for some than others. Many don’t ever accomplish that. Hence, the reason we have so many MAGA folks still around. Breaking out of my box, which was mainly low self-esteem, took a while but, by all means the box has finally disappeared.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. I agree with you. I am a girl who grew up in an Asian family. My parents are very protective of me. If I had not finished college, I could not go out with boys. If I hanged out, I must come home by 8 o’clock in the evening. Most of the time, they would come to pick me up. As a girl, we must learn how to cook, learn how to dress up when we go out. They wanted us to be the extension of them and to achieve their dreams. This is called filial piety. Those who do not obey their parents’ orders, they are not good children. I have grown up now. I don’t think this is right. Everybody’s life is different. The surroundings and abilities are not the same. As parents, in addition to give their children love, they should provide the opportunities for them to peek outside the boxes. To explore the world. That are the best gifts for the children.


    1. It is so nice that we Baby Boomers, for the most part, grew beyond the previous generation’s prejudices, and hate fairly quickly. Well, at least some of us. I am just hoping that our kids and grandkids so the same thing with our deficiencies.


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