Sunday, January 31, 2010

I am sitting here trying to decide why I blog- it is quite possibly the most narcissistic thing in which I participate. To think that anyone out there in the world really gives a darn about the thoughts that come out of my head is rather arrogant, isn't it? And yet, look at how many people out there in the world participate along with me. I read somewhere on the Internet that narcissism is the new up and coming diagnosis in mental health for us Gen-Xers and all those that have come since we reared our "me" attitudes on the world. So, my question is where did this new trend in "me, me, me" come from?

I think my age group was among the last to receive trophies only for winning, if you didn't win- you watched the other team get them. It made us want to try harder to win the next time. Now, everyone gets one just for participating, so it doesn't matter if you win. Does this lend itself to the delusion that we are all "winners" and that thought that everyone out there must really be interested in my every thought? This false sense of a level playing field, this ridiculous notion that everyone will always have the ability to be heard, the desire for instant-gratification and the utter selfishness of pursuing only "my own happiness" - all these I believe are a by-product of our new socialization in America.

We've been fed lies to appease our mentality which has been dumbed down again and again to account for our lack of good education, strong families, engaged parents, involved churches, and responsibility in government. We are now taught that it doesn't matter who wins, that somehow just by default of being American that we're entitled to everyone having the "same" of everything...because, that is what is FAIR; that its okay to want everything NOW and if you don't have the money then just use that plastic. But, the truth is there are people who win out, there are people that are going to be better than we are at making money, finding career success and raising their family to be olympians and astromauts. We are not all the same so we cannot not expect what we receive to be the same- can we? I see people out there in the world doing what they have to do make themselves happy, paying little mind to the homeless man sitting panhandling on the corner or the single Mom weighing out whether she should buy food to feed the family or pay her electric bill.

The narcissism is pervasive now in our culture. When you see these faux stars reading about themselves in the latest issue of the trash mag, that is the definition of being self-absorbed. Or absolutely anything on reality TV- I can't bear it. How does someone on a reality TV show become a "star"? Heidi and Spencer....need I say more? So, we're not only narcissists but also voyeurs? Ugh. I was talking to my Dad about how much has changed in his lifetime (73 years) and it astounds me daily to even think about the fact that he lived without electricity, running water, TV, cell phones, facebook...he was blaming my generation for voting in Obama. It was an interesting conversation because I can really only point to my Mom's generation for the spiral we have taken as a culture. As she burned her bra and stuck it to "the man" everything started to change. My generation was parented by the originators of Woodstock and acid trips and pot-laced brownies and then as they converted and became soccer Moms and gray-headed accountants we were left to navigate through the mazes of life with parents that needed their kids to be the ones to change the world because they had not. So, they started planting the seeds of Stuart Smalley theology and telling us all we are "winners."

So, where has our winner generation taken us? The defining moments of 2000-2010 were tragic, amazing, blessed, shameful and everything in between. But, as we look at that decade and what came to rise what do we have to show for all our "self-confidence"? A nation in debt, a country that cannot take care of itself, and now a new generation of our kids that are righteously immune to any sort of real instruction or criticism or correction of any kind. I refuse to parent this way. My kids will be raised to know that they will have to work hard, they will have to earn their successes, small or great. My boys will learn that happiness comes from within and God will always be there to provide that even when the world cannot. Most importantly they will learn that it isn't always about them...there is a big world out there and they need to see their part in it- not what the world owes them...but what they can do for our world. My parents instilled me a deep faith in God and that has seen me through the fads of my generation...that being said, I have fallen prey here and there to the things of the world. Hello, I am blogging...prey. I only hope that my children are able to change the world to see beyond themselves cause I think a lot of us Americans live in our own bubbles.

But, hey- what the heck do I know? I just want my voice to be heard, cause I know it, a blog rant- that's a first.

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