I tend to conform to culturally and socially prescribed gender roles to the extent that I learn the type of work a woman does, and her role in the society. It has shaped how I feel, think and behave in a way that I know how males and females have to fit in the society. Similarly, culturally and socially prescribed gender roles have influenced how I ‘do’ being a daughter in a way that I became aware of the individual stereotypes within the society. Culture has changed how I perceive my role within the family unit in a manner that I know what I am supposed to do as a woman. Besides, I did experience stigma in regards to ethnicity because people view my lifestyle as not the norm. The stigma affected how I think, feel and behave in a way that I became cautious of what I do or say around others.
My life experiences have enabled me to empathize with people in particular situations. For example, one of my friends at school suffered severe criticisms because of his race. Over time, I learned to understand his feelings because we were in accord. Personally, I think other people perceive me as impartial. It shapes how I feel, behave, and think in a way that I learn how to act differently towards different people. As well, religion shapes how I feel, think, and behave. Leary & Tangney (2012, p.73) affirm that religious identity, which has relevant content and goals, help to shape identity and self-concept. However, political persuasions never affect my ability to think, feel, or behave because I believe in my views and affiliations.
In my entire life, I have always had the determination to succeed. I set my priorities and goals right to enable me to achieve success. However, in life, I have experienced some ‘isms,’ particularly, racism. It shaped my sense of self-identity in a way that I became lenient to racial problems and types of diversity to survive. Even so, Tatum (n.d, p.4) asserts that a subsidiary group has to focus on survival in a situation of unequal power. For me to survive, I believe that my sensibility, empathy, confidence, health, motivation, trustworthiness, and high self-esteem as well as self-belief will guide me through the way.
Leary, M.R., and Tangney, J.P. 2012. Handbook of Self and Identity. Second Edition. New York: The Guilford Press.
Tatum, B.D. n.d. The Complexity of Identity: “Who Am I?” Retrieved from http://www.whiteprivilegeconference.com/resources/05-The-Complexity-of-Identity-Beverly-Tatum.pdf
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