Yeah, What He Said
Folks, I have one word of advice: be yourself. If you look in the mirror and don’t see yourself, fix that.
If enough people are themselves, maybe those who are most uncomfortable with you as yourself will finally have the courage to stop displacing their discomfort with who they really are upon you.
Wise words in any context.
They bring back a memory from a long time ago, too. I grew up in a town where being yourself beyond a certain age (like, say, twelve) was regarded as quite the silly thing to do.
An illustration: during one class in middle school, we were supposed to introduce ourselves by telling our names and mentioning two things that we liked to do. One girl mentioned activities that seemed perfectly appropriate but that somehow earned her a storm of mocking remarks. At the end of the class, I heard one of the more popular girls lecture her: “How could you be so stupid as to say you like the activities you mentioned? I said I like to swim and ski, but do you think I actually enjoy them? I don’t—I only named them because I knew that would be a popular answer.”
I always wondered how she figured that out so young. I wonder whether she still thinks the same way today.