I always have wondered about the "imaginary audience" and how it changes my behavior. I will be the 1st to admit that I am painfully shy and that I have somewhat low self-esteem. I honestly try to fix it, but at this point I don't know how much better it can get. I wonder if part of my reluctance to share verses that touch me is because I'm afraid of being judged by this imaginary audience or if it is just that I don't want any one to feel that I am pushing my beliefs upon them.
Growing up, everyone seemed to go to church. When my parents divorced, I stopped going to Catholic school, and my dad and I stopped going to church. We seemed to be the minority. Eventually, I started reaching out to religion on my own. I tried multiple churches until I found one that I was comfortable with and stayed there. I missed many of the rights of passage that a Catholic child should have gone through, but somehow I still ended up at a Catholic college. I went through some tough times, pulled away from the church and married a complete non-believer. That marriage ended for many reasons (that I will never go into here) and I found myself drawn back to church. I found my church home in the local Presbyterian church and I feel as if I am becoming part of the church family.
These days, I still feel as if I am in the minority. This time, though, it is for going to church. Has my generation pulled away from church, or is that just my perception? From what I see around me, and please feel free to correct me if I am wrong, so many people in my generation think that our parents screwed up big time and therefor are doing the exact opposite of what their parents did. In some families, the children have more power that the adults. And going to church is a big no-no. I see so many aspects of today's society that I find appalling and I wonder how much of it is caused by this anti-church trend.
I wonder often how many of our nation's problems would be solved if we went back to the beliefs of our parents and grandparents. I HATE what has become acceptable in our culture. I HATE the language, dress, behavior and promiscuity of the generations after mine. I hate that people comment on my children's manners because it means that so many people are completely lacking in manners. Please, thank you, yes sir, and yes ma'am should be the norm, not the exception.
I know that I am the "mean mom". I don't think that my children get to make the rules. I don't think that poor behavior is acceptable. My children must use manners or they will hear about it and there will be consequences. We go to church, we treat people with respect, we limit electronic time, we go outside and play. I don't claim that I am doing it right, but I really don't think that my parents screwed up my values and I hope that I am raising my girls to have some values.
But I still don't know why I have such a hard time sharing my beliefs. Is it a generational thing? Am I still trying to be a "cool kid"? Is it my shy nature? Hopefully as I continue to get more involved in the church and the more I try to instill the Christian values into my girls, the less fear I will have. Happy Monday...