The older and more non-childish phase of my life, the more aware I am of the person I have become and how the choices made myself and my family have formed. My family traditions, childhood and standards have influenced my life, cultural views and values allowing me to frame a life, principles, and a family similar in some characteristics to my family, who raised me, while other aspects are amazingly different. With my life and professional goals very different from that of my parents lives and their expectations these influences by class, culture, and ethical teachings are instrumental in shaping my views, perceptions and how they played a part in my current family life.
Back in my childhood, I feel as if I was living life while being contained within a cage. I was born in Roswell which is 30 minutes north of Atlanta, GA. I had three older siblings and three younger siblings who captured the majority of my mother’s time and a work alcoholic father, caught up in a capitalistic engineering job playing the hunter/gatherer roll, my dad was never around and never attending any of my games, concerts, etc. As seen in the structural-functional theory as it relates to gender, my mother imitated to societies patriarchy views because during the seventies sexism dictated a woman’s place within society. We all attended public school and went without my father to the Baptist church while being forced-fed the same ideals and traditions that where instilled and passed down through my grandparents on both sides of my family. I grew up in what we now consider as a middle-class society and had a very narrow view of the world or the discrimination others endured. My family educational values were dictated through threats for nonconformity in my family to include occasional physical punishment that would be considered deviant behavior in today’s world.
Getting older through my teen years and trying to escape the shadows of my three older and three younger siblings, I forged the wrong path academically, while looking for acceptance from people my own age which usually resulted with hanging with the wrong people. I luckily developed good work ethic and habits because my father insisted we all work while school was out during the summer, so we would stay out of trouble and learn about how the economy worked. Upon barley completing high school. I met my now wife right after high school and soon after we met we moved into together and got pregnant with our first child. It was at that point we decided to get married and travel a little bit before we had the baby.
During our new travels, events, meetings, throughout the world really opened my eyes to the gender, spiritual, and cultural discrimination people come across. These views and encounters I experienced further fixed in me that if I wanted more out of life for myself, or for that matter my family later in life, I would have to get into a blue-collar job, so I won’t have as many delays, trials, and troubles. I wanted to make sure I achieved success from commitment, blood, sweat, and tears. My wife of thirteen years who chose the gender roles of her own mother and of my mother in working from the home, raising our children. The was the best choice for our family because we felt that someone else raising our children wasn’t the best option for them. Even with all the feministic controversy my wife chose the more liberal approach. While raising our three girls and two boys, me coaching or attending all sporting activities, karate tournaments, boy scout trips and meetings. I have not become my father. I was able to play the hunter/gather role in providing for my family, while playing a very important role in shaping our children to be able to handle what challenges and opportunities the world has to offer them.
After twelve years I decided to go back to school to get my bachelor’s in business administration. Since being in school, this new journey and opportunity to further my career it has allowed me to expand my educational knowledge. It opened my eyes to the many captivating cultures and diversified ways in which people live, view and cherish their culture and social norms. I have a new respect for individuals and their challenges when dealing with race, and color issues, these life experiences and perceptions have dictated and even altered their general and cultural beliefs creating a world very different from what I have perceived. The saying that with age comes wisdom, is very important along with my family and life experiences in creating the individual I am today.
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