I so badly want to fit in.
To be seen as everyone else
So simply I’m not giving in
Today I made a choice
I want in
I so badly want a part
In this place called society
I’m sick of falling apart
I want to know how
Don’t tell me to just “Listen to my heart”
But I also want so badly to just be me
I feel like it’s a dance
Between me and who I could be
If I changed
To conform to society.
Hey all. I know with all the recent attacks happening in Israel, you prob. expected a post about that. Well, it sorta is and sorta not. Today I want to write about fitting in. It’s a topic most people have asked me to write my thoughts on, but I never got around to.
So here we go with my fitting in rant!
During my latest depression (as teenagers have frequently random moods 😉 it makes us special!) which was around from the beginning to end of sukkos break I felt like I didn’t fit in anywhere. I’ve had a lot of experience not fitting in:
-I went to sleepaway camp as a preteen and was one of the only “western” girls in the entire camp
-I moved to a school where approximately 4 girls spoke my language…and 2 teachers.
-I moved to a different country
-I’ve been in 5 school in the past 5 years.
Not fitting in isn’t fun.
But all of these things were environmentally…what about not fitting in emotionally? Spiritually? Fitting in is a general idea that can be taken to many places. Today (were having a long post day) I want to focus on the 3 I have mentioned already.
Changing to a different environment can be very hard. Going from 8th grade to 9th in a new school; moving schools, countries, or cities; and more. It’s hard to not fit it with the culture, the people, or the place. But what can you do about it? Well, you can keep a good attitude, remember that most of these things will be known to other people so people will cut you slack. Remember that G-d is always with you, even when things get hard. Usually you can’t do much but have good support, and don’t give up. Don’t push yourself to fit in when you don’t. Let yourself take time to change, and perhaps you will eventually be recognized as someone that has different perspectives, ideas, and culture to add to other people’s lives because of your changes/moves. People will accept and embrace you if you just stay yourself! Everything has a plus side 😉
Talking from my current predicament- it sucks to not fit in emotionally, since usually it is not known to outsiders and it’s hard to talk about. All these recent attacks haven’t really bothered me. It’s hard seeing everyone else getting in a tizzy and are uncomfortable with the fact that other Jews are getting killed while I say “Oh…pity” I DO feel bad, but what am I supposed to do? The feelings just won’t come!!
As I’ve stated in many other posts, I strongly believe all the answers to your problems lie in yourself as you know yourself best (but if it’s something that involved another person in a dangerous type of way/has scarred you/has caused you to damage or major emotionally problems/something halachic – please go to a Rav/Teacher/Parent/Therapist) You are an expert on yourself, I know that no one else can tell me how to stir up my feelings better than me, but I still don’t know how. The only thing I can say is I have to try and figure out what is good for me. It will take time, energy, trial and error, but I want to fit in emotionally. In general in such a predicament I suggest you inspire yourself by the way you get inspired best- reading, music, talking, speeches, writing, nature, I don’t know what.
If you are the most spiritual in your group of friends or school, and you are not getting any higher there perhaps it’s not the right place for you. I personally know of someone who left school since he was not gaining anything there. Of course don’t ditch your friends if they are going through a hard time, or you wear longer skirts- even if your friends are a bit different from you spiritually (you can’t know 100 percent where they’re coming from, so for all you know they are WAYYY holier than you) as long as you gain insight, and they help you get closer to G-d-that’s fine. But if your friend’s are weighing you down, then perhaps you should spend less time with them. For instance, you know your friends talk gossip all shabbos, you want to stop yourself but feel awkward telling them, what to do?
1. If they are good friends, just tell them. “Hey, I decided to be more careful in my speech. So could you please respect that of me and if I switch the topic please don’t try and change it back” Don’t be afraid to say what you feel-especially with good friends.
2. Try to switch the topic if you don’t know them so well “OMG, You just HAVE to hear what happened to me…” usually works.
3. If it’s really bothering and you don’t want to tune out, or to shy to butt in or express how you feel just avoid it. Invite someone “frummer” along, make plans with your cousin.
4. If you have tried all with an epic fail, perhaps there friends aren’t for you. If the can’t reppsect your wishes about things then perhaps they aren’t good friends at all.
There’s lots of types of fitting in. You don’t always HAVE to fit in. Sometimes you have to follow social rules, the Torah’s rules, but always be yourself 😉
It’s hard to find your place, and sometimes you gotta make it-not find it.
Have a great shabbos!!