This I believe, you cannot depend on anyone else, you can only depend on yourself. While asking family and friends their opinions on this and other core values, most found this one slightly depressing. Although to me, it is an empowering statement of independence and self-sufficiency.
In getting to know my past significant others and friends, I tend to pop the question, “what are your greatest fears?” The most repetitively heard was the fear of growing old alone, dying alone, and simply being alone. This brought to my attention that I, myself, shared the same phobia of being alone going into adulthood.
While spiraling into a reflection of why I felt this way, I learned that young children, adolescents, and adults popularly choose to ignore one thing: insecurity. I store memories of elementary and middle school, where cliques were naturally formed, yet I always found myself excluded. Being mixed African American and white introduced other struggles of identity and finding a group to belong to. While it may not be as prevalent of an obstacle for others, I always found myself supposedly “too white” for the black kids because of my formal way of speaking and seen as the “black representative” for white students to constantly ask insensitive questions on black culture.
I remember bursting into tears to my mother about how I could not relate to any of my peers; to their humor, conversations, music tastes. The aching wish to conform and fit in put me in an empty place of insecurity, where I figured I would never truly connect with those around me. Yet as I grew older and noticed that my newfound friends experienced the same feelings, I realized that I am who I wake up to in the morning. I am the one who makes the decisions over my life. I am the one person I will always be with through the high and low points in this small period of existence. I feel as if once you notice your own true value, you are able to appreciate and nurture your being. While there are influences who shape you, true judgement is made up within the confidence of oneself. Insecurity is created as a barrier to that success.
With insecurity introduces the need to fill the hole where self-confidence is needed. People become so overdependent on relationships and the opinion of others that they tend to lose their own identity. My mother, a strong, independent woman, became insecure in her own abilities as a parent at one point. Therefore, she met my stepfather, created my sister, and now personally admits to the marriage being one out of just dependency. I observed how quiet and sunken her personality had become after marriage, as well as the regretful look she gave me during serious conversations.
While this falls in line with the cliché “I don’t need a man,” it plays true for all regardless of gender. Unless we are fully confident and sure of our own self-sufficiency, we cannot lead ourselves into a trap of insubstantial dependence. For this reason, I have no interest in pursuing any relationships or future close friendships until I know for a fact I can thoroughly enjoy the essence of depending on myself and my happiness.