Demystification Guru

Just because we don't understand something, doesn't mean it isn't understandable.

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Location: Ottawa, Ontario, Canada

Thursday, February 23, 2006

more on identity

I was watching a recent episode of House in which the victim turned out to be a hermaphrodite. She was a female for all outward purposes but also has undescended testicles. The writers made the news that she had these testicles a shock and had the information delivered like a bombshell and the victim cried and wailed that “she was a girl, not a boy!” It made me think again about how people define themselves and how they establish their identity. This girl had identified herself as a beautiful girl (she was 15 years of age and a fashion model) and that was about it. When told she was something slightly more (shall we say) or at least different, she collapsed into grief at her lost identity.

When some people find out they are adopted, not having been told this as they were growing up, they often go on a desperate search for their biological parents. When some people find out their background contains a few genes from someone of colour or someone from some other repressed ethnicity, they tend to identify with those few ethnic genes, rather than accept that they are still the same person they ever were. Why is that?

Why do some people cling to a single aspect of themselves as their primary identity, when they are really a composite of everything that has occurred up to that point? Perhaps people find that being unique is unsatisfying, perhaps they long for belonging. If a person is part of a group, then that person IS somebody (they think). Such is the mentality of gang members. And yet, one cannot always agree with everything the group does. Maybe it’s too much like work to be a unique individual - maybe it’s easier to be just one in a group?


Anonymous Norah said...

Ah, if only they knew how fun it is being unique.

Perhaps it takes too much courage to be unique.

12:16 p.m., February 24, 2006  
Blogger JuliaR said...

Norah, that's exactly it... it's too hard. It's easier, takes less energy just to be part of the crowd.

5:04 p.m., February 24, 2006  

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