Wednesday, January 25, 2017

Thoughts, Rants, Confusion, and No Conclusion.

Posted by Sunaina Patnaik at Wednesday, January 25, 2017

Despite all the fun and frolic we 90s kids claim to have, quite a few things were rough for us. Either we were uninformed or ill-informed. And God forbid you're a girl, things were only bizarre for you. Where am I going with this, you ask? Simple! I was watching a TV series which runs on a plot where high schoolers deal with things that matter to them - their future, their dreams, their issues with their families and themselves while exploring their sexuality. When I was in high-school, I was alien to this. I particularly remember that we had a cohort of girls in class who took the responsibility of moral policing...you know...basically everything. Now I am not trying to take a personal dig at them, but they made it pretty hard for students to have conversations with individuals of the opposite sex. So, let alone receiving knowledge on things that you should at the right age, it was also forbidden to forge healthy relationships with people from the opposite sex.

And we all know how enticing the forbidden fruit is, don't we?

I am not really sure if the teenagers now are into slam books, but when I was one, we had a rather detrimental obsession with them. Obviously, because it was one place where you either poured yourself out. For a lot of us, it was an easy escape into a world that elders never knew of - it was a safe place where you could tell if you were crushing on the fairest of all or truly admit that you wanted to be a singer and not a doctor when you grew up. I remember this night when I had to tear my slam book to bits because my friends had written their secrets and I was worried someone might read them. That night, I tore more than just pages, I tore down the only reminder of all that we could have been and all that we weren't.

At a tender age when we're supposed to know what's right and what's not, we are often misled and made to believe things that aren't true. That having creative dreams isn't financially viable and that sex is a bad thing that bad people do, or that talking to someone from an opposite gender is a crime, and that trying to voice out your opinion no matter how strongly you believe in is incorrect. You get the drift, the sheer ludicrosity is endless! (I'm still referring to things in the present tense because so much hasn't changed yet.)

In my own little time, I've realized that we were taught different things instead. For instance, relinquishing our billion dollar ideas and compromising on our million dollar smiles. We were brainwashed that experimenting with life and its misadventures isn't a luxury we could exercise. We were taught to be cautious without logic, to remain PG13 forever, and more importantly, to stay unaware. We were implored to be embarrassed but never unabashed.

Honestly, what were (and maybe still are) we trying to get at? Be ill-informed at 15, embrace confusion at 16, turn reticent at 17, and at 18, be legally under the control of people around us and imprison our dreams and decisions in the realms to our quiet minds.

But then are our dreams, discoveries, and curiosities better confined to the inner pages of slam books and personal journals? Let's take a moment to ponder.

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