*CW: Nature vs. Nurture

This argument, in all the years I’ve had to pick a side for an argumentative essay, I’ve never chosen a side.

Okay, before we start on today’s rant, let’s keep in mind this isn’t the typical debate. We’ve all had to learn about nature vs. nurture, and if you haven’t basically it’s about a person and the way they turn out as an adult, is it a product of nature (natural events such as genetics) or nurture (the way they were raised). There’s also something now called epigenetics which says that nurture can affect the genes. 🤯 Read More Here.

There’s definitely not a definitive answer to this question though.

The answer is both or all of it. 🤷‍♀️

People can develop their own ideas and constructs from anything. Look around at the world. All of the controversy is typically because of differing opinions, or misinterpretation, or a different perspective. Therefore, nature vs. nurture wise, you can become who you are based on both, depending on how you choose to interpret it.

Let me lay it out.

I’m a product of both.

My parents were drug addicts, in and out of jail, rehabs, multiple different people in their lives, domestic violence, check!

My mom suffered from schizo affect disorder and bipolar disorder. Risk factor for me, pretty high.

I moved over 15 times in the span of 13 years…. no military affiliation. I saw cocaine and needles at the age of 3. I saw physical fighting, hammers being thrown, hair being pulled, my mom smacking my dad upside the head with a frying pan, stepdad choking my mom out while she beat him upside the head with a cordless phone charger. I’ve seen some things, but I recognize it’s not as bad as some people still.

I’ve seen my mom purchase a gun with a silencer because she was tired of the neighbors partying. And I’m not saying she killed anybody, I’m just saying I never heard those neighbors party again, because they moved shortly after.

I’ve seen the cop car lights in the middle of the night, I’ve been unsure or where I was going to live. I’ve woken up with no electricity, literally gotten dressed in the dark. I’ve gone without eating and I’ve gone without basic things you would think all children have growing up, trust me. Again, I want to recognize that some children still have it worse. Let’s not forget #saveourchildren.

It’s easy to fall into the statistics with this background. Not to say I didn’t, because I most definitely did in some aspects.

I started partying at age 12. Drinking, smoking, acting wild. I did that. I smoked my first cigarette when I was 6. Wtf was I even doing? I stole from stores and hid drugs for people at the age of 7. I skipped school, I hung out with the gangbangers, I started a “gang”, high school shit, I’ve carved into my skin, the whole cutting phase was a thing, and I never backed down from anything or anyone, ready to fight at all times.

My dad kicked me out at age 16. I got pregnant at the age of 17. So yeah, to say I didn’t alter my life negatively in some ways, I won’t lie about. My first born was my savior though. She really doesn’t even understand.

I went through a rebellious kid phase that lasted from age 6-17/18 I guess. It was a crazy journey but I adapted to my surroundings as best as I could. That’s not me anymore, to an extent.

I graduated high school with a 3.95 GPA. I never failed a class. Only got suspended once, surprisingly. I graduated earlier than the rest of my class. I started college immediately after and went on to earn my Masters degree at the age of 26. Today I’m a behavior analyst managing a fucking clinic! I have a house, three kids now, and I’m hustling everyday to never go back to where I came from.

On the flip side, I’ll never forget where I came from. Would I say I made it? Absolutely but I still have more goals to accomplish.

One thing is for sure, my kids will never have to struggle but they will know about the struggle.

So nurture wise, it played its part, but nature wise, instinctively I was stronger. I mean, I have my weaknesses mentally, I’m not okay all of the time. Nurture wise, that did mess me up a little, but nature wise, I’m still stronger. I will still fight to ensure a better life for myself and my children.

So to the great debate, I say don’t let that determine who you become. Let it all play a part, but in the end make your own decisions! You do have control over your choices now, if you let some of that baggage that’s holding you down go. Don’t let the past define everything about you. It will affect you, it will be hard to overcome triggers, it will be difficult. That’s not sugar coated. It’s up to you to fight and not give up, even when it feels like life is crushing you, you can turn it around. Think outside of the box. Think survival. Because if there’s anything that is natural human instincts, survival is one of them!

You got this!

-Dear Perception

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