In a perfect world no one would be homeless, starving, physically or sexually abused.
In this article we will only be talking about the United States. Third world countries, dictatorships and corruption are a whole other topic for a later discussion.
In a perfect world no one would be homeless, starving, physically or sexually abused. Everyone would be literate and have access to basic health care and clean drinking water. Your rights would not be dictated by your gender, ethnicity or tribe. No one would have to worry about war, genocide or slavery. But guess what we don’t live in a perfect world. Good and bad things happen to good and evil people. Some of the kindest people die of cancer before the age of 40. While some of the most heinous people die of old age without one lick of karma. You can kick and scream and march, but at the end of they day, no one is going to rid the world of its endless problems. Because life is NOT fair.
It’s All About Perspective
Now you may read this and say to yourself “What’s the point? We might as well all live a life of debauchery and forget about everyone else.”
Yes, you can think of it that way, if you lack any ounce of logic and reasoning. Or you can take a different approach which is quite controversial in the world we live in today. For some unknown reason people will come out with every argument in the book to say “But this…, Or not everyone can… You don’t know what it’s like…. If you haven’t guessed it yet, the big evil word is called personal responsibility.
I get it. I really do. I have a background in social work, I even have members of my own family who are addicted to drugs, convicted felons, baby mamas and deadbeat fathers. And, that is part of the reason why I call bullshit on all of these excuses. People in the United States are not born on equal footing. But if there was ever a place to be born poor, I would put my money on the U.S.
Furthermore, I’m honestly sick and tired of people treating others who are stuck in habitual poverty, as if they’re incapable of doing better for themselves. It’s almost insulting. Maybe it comes from the guilt of knowing that they have it good while poor people suffer. However, there comes a point when one has to ask, at what point do we break this generational cycle of suffering?
Martyrs Not Needed
There is nothing honorable about being a martyr and staying in the trenches of dysfunction. Once you know better, do better. If you grew up without a father and felt firsthand the detrimental effects of growing up in a single parent household, then do whatever you can to not inflict that pain on your offspring.
Planned parenthood gives out condoms and birth control for free and if you are poor, get an education. Student aid is available, and even if you cannot get free aid, student loans are available to everyone. And for goodness sakes, pick a major that has plenty of opportunities and pays well. College is not for everyone, but you can make a good living on a trade. An added benefit is that the training is cheaper than a four-year degree.
Don’t Look Back
This one is going to ruffle some feathers but I’m going to say it anyway. Once you escape dysfunction, you owe the ones you left behind NOTHING. I’m all for reciprocity. I’ve been fortunate enough to have loved ones help me get to where I’m. My grandmother helped me with a down payment for a car, while my dad paid my car payment while I was working and going to college. My grandmother and my parents don’t have to think twice about asking me for something if they need it. For everyone else, they could have made the same decisions I did. If I do help friends or family, it’s because I know they are serious about improving their life and they won’t take my generosity for granted.
Roadblocks and Naysayers
Life will definitely throw roadblocks while you are trying to make a better life for yourself, because again, life is not fair. Part of persevering is surrounding yourself with a network of likeminded individuals who are also trying to do better for themselves. Don’t ever underestimate the power of good influences. You gain nothing from surrounding yourselves with people who try to guilt you for trying to improve your station in life.
If family or friends say to you;
“Oh, you think your better than us because:”
- You’re going to school
- You’re married and have a dual income before having kids
- You’re traveling internationally
- You’re learning a different language
- You refuse to date down
- You refuse to put your lively hood in danger for people who only want to use you
If anyone comes up to you spewing such garbage, DUMP them from your life immediately and don’t look back. They lack personal responsibility and instead of being inspired to do better from your example, they would rather not make the effort, instead, they’re dragging you back down to their level.
They will blame the system, politicians, the man, immigrants, their no-good children’s father or mother, their parents, the failed school system and the prison complex.
You’ll never hear them blame themselves and say;
- “You know what? I knew where babies came from, but chose not to use birth control.
- “You know what? I would never marry a man who doesn’t have any ambition, so maybe I shouldn’t have chosen to have my child share his DNA”
- “You know what? I know I have no job, so maybe I should use condoms so I won’t be a deadbeat father.”
- “You know what? If I get caught up in a life of crime, I can go to jail and kill my prospects of obtaining a good career.”
- “You know what? There are no jobs in this neighborhood, so maybe I should go to at LEAST community college, so I can get a job that pays decent and get the hell out of here.”
These simple decisions determine the direction your life can go. One leads to a pretty decent, less stressful life and one leads to a whole heap of problems. Now you can read this and be appalled and say to yourself; “The amount of privilege that I’m speaking from is abhorrent.”
I will beg to differ, I’m a minority and a female who did not grow up rich. I’ve seen firsthand how people from the same two parents and raised in the same household lead completely different lives based on the decisions they’ve made.
Some Have it Harder Than Others
Like I mentioned earlier, I have a background in social work and I am fully aware of the hurdles, abuse and poverty that a lot of people have faced. I encourage individuals dealing with sexual, physical and emotional abuse to seek help. The Department of Social Services and various nonprofits have counselors for low income individuals who seek help dealing with past trauma. I’m not against Social Programs, in fact, they can be a tool that should be used if need be, to reach your goals of becoming self-sustained and happy.
Excuses Will Keep You Where You’re At
Making excuses will not help. It’s time to tell LIFE, no matter how much you try to screw me over with awful parents, abuse, poverty and horrible living environments, that I will do, what I have to do, to escape your stronghold, because no one else is going to do it for me. When I do escape, I will do my best to make sure you don’t drag my future generations down into your dysfunctional abyss.
It’s Not Hopeless
It’s sad to see someone with a downtrodden plight in life. Whether it’s from their own decisions or something completely out of their control. Personal responsibility doesn’t mean nothing bad will happen, that takes you ten steps back, when trying to reach your goal. It’s about doing whatever you can to minimize risky behavior that leads to anything getting in the way of where you want to be. It also means having a backup plan if your plan of action is met with a hurdle or detour. Everyone makes mistakes, and once they are made, some are harder to recuperate from than others. It can be done, but the road to self-correct WILL be harder. Look out for the next article on how to self-correct after bad decisions.
This is a developing story, Please come back to this article for more updates.