I hate the South.

I’m home from college for the summer. I returned from from a big city in the North to a small town in the South. I knew going back home was going to be different given that I’m so different from when I left, but I had no idea what was in store.

Everyone says freshman year of college brings tremendous change and they’re not wrong. About halfway through the year, I came to the realization that for most of my life I’d been pretending to be someone I wasn’t. I was confined by the conservative mindset of the Bible Belt. My whole life I had to follow the rules based on Christian morals or be shunned by my peers. I conformed to this mindset throughout high school, put on a mask, and tried to convince myself that I could be the person people in the South wanted me to be.

As my first year in college progressed in the liberal city, I began to realize I could really open up to my new friends without judgement. They didn’t have strict ideals of who I should be and how I should act like my friends from back home did. My new friends came from all over the country and all over the globe and had open minds. Their open-mindedness made them willing to accept me for whoever I chose to be. After I realized this fact I opened up and found happiness I didn’t know existed. I took risks, tried new things, and began to lose any fears of people judging me for any actions I took; if they were going to judge me, simple enough- they shouldn’t be my friend. My new friends truly accepted the real me and made me feel comfortable in my own skin. I was home for the first time in my life.

I hate the South because the people are so closed minded. If you don’t meet their moral standards you are a sinner. Their views are right and yours are wrong. Anything different is wrong. The South is a little bubble stuck in their old christian ways ignorant to the evolving world around them.

I realize times change and we all fade from our high school friends eventually. I returned home to them and tried to show them the new me and I was met with disgust. They don’t approve of my partying or my sexual habits. I am a sinner in their eyes. These actions make my whole person despicable to them. Those things do not define me though. They are small pieces that compose my being and I am proud of who I am despite their judgement. I know I am fearfully and wonderfully made. I know I am a good person despite their accusations. I know it is okay to be the real me even if they refuse to accept it.

I used to think I appreciated growing up in the South, but I realize now that I do not. The mindsets of people surrounding me in this location prevented me from being myself and finding true happiness. Luckily moving to a more liberal area allowed me to identify this issue before it was too late.  It’s going to be a long summer home, but only 3 months and I’ll be back at school with people that accept the real me. After that I’m never looking back at my Southern roots again.

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2 thoughts on “I hate the South.

  1. Cheer up, smile on and rock it! Excuse my french but screw them. Either they are jealous or they are scared of change but the only one you have to impress is yourself… and the man upstairs or lady of the earth like me. Don’t blame the south… not all of us are bad 😉.

    Liked by 1 person

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