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Is it wrong to want to change who I am? watch

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    Please keep anonymous or delete.

    TL;DR People - Oh come on, it only takes a few minutes to read. Good chance to improve your speed reading skills.

    I spent the first 10 years of my life living in a very poor and deprived area with a lot of crime. I moved away and went to a better school and left with bad grades as I started to get distracted with alcohol and cannabis and didn't achieve anywhere near my predicted academic goals. My parents are as working class as they come and they have no interest in me, or anyone, pursuing further education, my father was always working away and neither of them ever gave me any academic encouragement or helped me with homework. They are racist, close minded, opinionated, hold very prejudiced opinions and lead boring, insular and generally meaningless lives. Yes that sounds terrible but I try and love them because they are my family, but I don't respect nor have I ever admired anything they have done.

    I have always been struggling for money and not really had many life experiences. Just sort of 'existing' very much like my parents have been doing their whole lives. I've always felt as though I can never 'act myself', because I am afraid people will judge me for who I am, but in reality I don't really 'know myself' at all. I don't know what I'm good at, what I can achieve, what I'm capable of concerning life in general. I have friends but the person they know is nothing like how I want to be as a person and I constantly feel as though I am having to sort of...dub myself down, for them. For example I would love to hold intellectual debates about current issues or morality and ethics but my friends often give me an expression approaching actual disgust when I try to initiate any of these conversations. Lately, I think they know that I am deliberately withholding myself back though because they regard me as outgoing and intelligent, yet they say they 'never know what's going on with you or what you're thinking'.

    Example, I am a confident speaker but I have a regional accent and I hate speaking in it because I think it makes me sound unintelligent, but whenever you even make an effort to speak properly around friends or family here, everyone picks up on the fact you're trying to speak properly and acts as though you are some sort of leper trying to sneak back into society, unnoticed.

    I'm going back to full time education this year and then hopefully to a top university. Whichever university I get into I see it as an opportunity to allow me to just develop in every direction as a person, intellectually, socially, academically, and I feel that I should embrace it because I honestly can't live anymore of my life like this. At the same time I am afraid of alienating my family and most definitely my friends. But then I think....'would it matter?'. I feel like a bad person when I think that.

    Is it a bad thing to want to change yourself so much, when, in all frankness, I know it will lead to me being a completely different person who could possibly achieve great things? Or do you think that you can never change yourself at such a fundamental level? Do you think it takes courage to change yourself this much? Or is it cowardly that I can not accept who I am?

    Thank you for reading this. I appreciate your replies.
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    It's not bad. You want to improve yourself and live up to your potential. There's nothing wrong with that. Don't lose hope, carry on with your plan - how ld are you by the way? You will find as soon as you get to university, no one will be sneering at your wanting to have intelligent conversation. Hold on til then!
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    The best piece of advice that I can give is that it is YOUR life. Live it however you desire, you only get one shot at it. If you want to change and become that person then do it, maybe you are already that person yet you are consciously changing to fit in to your surroundings with your friends and family.

    If you feel that is who you truly are then go for it! Have a serious think about what you want out of life, and pursue what will make you happy!
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    You're a strong person. Be the person you want to be and don't let anyone pull you back.
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    I wouldn't see it as changing yourself, I'd see it as taking advantage of the opportunities that you can in order to improve your future. Definitely go for it, you deserve great admiration for trying to - I say this not in a snobby way - rise above your background.
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    (Original post by in_vogue)
    It's not bad. You want to improve yourself and live up to your potential. There's nothing wrong with that. Don't lose hope, carry on with your plan - how ld are you by the way? You will find as soon as you get to university, no one will be sneering at your wanting to have intelligent conversation. Hold on til then!
    I am 23 years old. Thank you for your kind and encouraging words.

    (Original post by Topcorn)
    The best piece of advice that I can give is that it is YOUR life. Live it however you desire, you only get one shot at it. If you want to change and become that person then do it, maybe you are already that person yet you are consciously changing to fit in to your surroundings with your friends and family.

    If you feel that is who you truly are then go for it! Have a serious think about what you want out of life, and pursue what will make you happy!
    Yes, I suppose you are right. You do only get one shot after all. You have it said it exactly right there in the bolded text. I think this is what I am doing, and I have been doing for a long time. I always thought it was a bad thing, especially when you hear people say things like 'you can never change who you are' and I've read threads on here by other forum users, whose friends have changed and the reception by the friend has always been negative.

    Thank for everyone else for your replies, I really appreciate them. In all honesty, I thought this post was going to get slammed and I was going to get a tirade of replies saying things like 'don't be pretentious' 'live with it' etc.
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    (Original post by Anonymous)
    I moved away and went to a better school and left with bad grades as I started to get distracted with alcohol and cannabis and didn't achieve anywhere near my predicted academic goals
    Regrettable but can happen to the best of us - one area where you really prove your metal in life is in identifying mistakes, learning from them and becoming stronger - as a result of both having had to deal with flaws/failures and from the product of the life lessons themselves

    (Original post by Anonymous)
    ..they are racist, close minded, opinionated, hold very prejudiced opinions and lead boring, insular and generally meaningless lives
    Few people have perfect backgrounds, doesn't say anything about you, even if you do value people who in some senses you abhor, like you say they're family after all there are plenty of others out there who have had to draw from different places in the role model stakes, it says a lot about a person if they can model themselves on influences/ideas outside their immediate personal experience as young people..

    (Original post by Anonymous)
    I don't really 'know myself' at all
    Knowing yourself is to me the most important step towards 'completeness'. Most, if not all, young people must 'discover themselves' and the best, and perhaps only, way to do this is by being challenged by life experiences. This means ensuring that you challenge yourself, rise to the occasion and all that jazz but also learning to examine yourself objectively and subjectively, introspection is an important part of personal development

    (Original post by Anonymous)
    I would love to hold intellectual debates about current issues or morality and ethics but my friends often give me an expression approaching actual disgust when I try to initiate any of these conversations
    Seek out people who will engage with you on this level - there are usually plenty of opportunities to do this at uni e.g. societies etc where it's on a plate

    (Original post by Anonymous)
    Example, I am a confident speaker but I have a regional accent and I hate speaking in it because I think it makes me sound unintelligent
    That is so shallow, I have to admit we've had a lecturer who has a quirky regional (Yorkshire-ish) type accent that's a little amusing to those of us who are unfamiliar with such accents but that doesn't really serve as to undermine the credibility of anything he says, just takes a bit of getting used to for those of us who are purile enough to want to giggle at first :rolleyes:

    (Original post by Anonymous)
    Whenever you even make an effort to speak properly around friends or family here, everyone picks up on the fact you're trying to speak properly and acts as though you are some sort of leper trying to sneak back into society, unnoticed
    **** em if they haters.. as long as you don't sound obsequious who cares, it's nice when people make an effort to annunciate properly etc

    (Original post by Anonymous)
    I feel that I should embrace it
    There's no more to say than that - you know what you have to do, this is a fantastic opportunity to embrace it, really immerse yourself in a new mode and reap the rewards Stay positive!

    (Original post by Anonymous)
    At the same time I am afraid of alienating my family and most definitely my friends
    Good friends/family will be there for you through thick and thin, as long as you don't start acting superior you've nothing to worry about, anyone with whom you fall out of favour for seeking to better your existence is not worth a moment's thought - from your comments you seem to recognise this already, something about which you should not feel at all guilty, it's a fact of life

    (Original post by Anonymous)
    Is it a bad thing to want to change yourself so much, when, in all frankness, I know it will lead to me being a completely different person who could possibly achieve great things?
    From what I've read it doesn't seem as though this is a case of changing yourself as a person, it's a matter of changing your lifestyle, broadening your horizons and correcting certain debilitating attitudes

    As an aside (for everyone) - "changing yourself at a fundamental level" may only be possible if you either subscribe to a monk-like level of committment to change over many years or, more ordinarily, the sum of life-shaping experiences over time (over which we typically have little control)

    To my mind, rather than seek to alter ourselves at some fundamental level (unless we're talking about innately evil/sadistic/sociopathic individuals):

    1) Learn to recognise one's positive aspects, draw strength from them and concentrate on those in our lives who recognise and appreciate them too
    2) Learn to identify attitudinal/behavioural flaws as either relatively unimportant/insurmountable, in which case bury them, or pressing and rectifiable, in which case approach them with a level head/constructively tackle them - as you (OP) seem determined to do
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    You are doing what is best for you and no body can take that away from you.. just dont forget who you are along the way.. we are all unique and special in our own way.
    University will open alot of doors for you if thats something you will look into.
    Bets of luck.
 
 
 
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