November 17, 2001
What is it that influences a person's identity? Is it their parents, where they live, religion, or their homes? When is it that they get one? Does it just magically appear when they are able to comprehend what is right and what is not, when they learn to write their name, or are they born with it? A person's identity is their own. Though people can influence their identity, nobody directly put it there and nobody could take it away. Everyone's identity is different because it is made up of factors and experiences throughout the course of their life. There is no one thing that would give a person their identity. How would one describe someone's identity? Is it the way they look, or the way they talk, who they associate themselves with, or none of the above? To me someone's identity is a part of their being, them as a whole. Nobody could ever physically see it, hold it, or touch it, but it's there. It's a pilot in your decision making, thought process, dreams, and ideas. One may think something is terrible while another person may laugh. The only explanation for this is that everyone has their own identity/personality. Like finger prints, an identity is unique to each individual. Though some people may share common thoughts or characteristics, its not possible for someone to think, act, dream, and feel the same. There are many foundations to a person's identity. Their family, friends, home life, religion, and environment, as well as many others, all play a large role. But how does this identity appear? Its not like you can go into a store and shop around for one. A person's identity develops over the years and is put together by the person themselves . It comes from their ability to think rationally, reason, and form views. Nobody has the same mind, or the same conscious, so its only makes sense that no ones has the same identity. A person's identity is constantly changing and developing from the time they learn to crawl until the time they begin to grow old and gray. As people's dreams are dreamed and goals are accomplished their aspirations and values will change as well as their identities. It may be just a slight adjustment or a major overhaul but their identity will alter. A large factor in forming ones identity is their family. One's family is important to them in all aspects of life. Your family doesn't necessarily need to be your biological parents or ever a direct relative at all, but everyone has someone that they can consider family. No matter who they are, they will be the people who will be there when you're in need of aide. They will have a large impact on who you turn out to be. Though the numbers are getting smaller, many people are still fortunate enough to live with both their parents. They may even have some brothers and sisters to play with as they grow up. But ever with the same family influences, brothers and sisters still do not have the same identities. Some may even say having a "traditional" family would be bad for the development of an identity. For example, what kind identity would a young girl develop if see repeatedly saw her father beat on her mother? She would probably not feel the same as another girl whose father always showed love and caring for her mother. What about a teenager who used drugs as often as he changed his underwear. Would his younger brother, in looking up to him, feel the same as another boy who grew up never seeing an illegal drug before? If family members have no regard for keeping the other members of the family on the right path to being a good person, then what will they become. A large part of how someone turns out is due to the family. A good, solid, caring family may give rise to a kinder, gentler person than a family that does not care whether the children get into trouble. Kids grow up seeing their parents and how they act, or not seeing their parents at all. Proper parenting will lead to better...