What is “Normal”?

Posted on October 12, 2010


I saw my friend, Anju’s post about how she has been branded as a “weirdo” as she is going to Tanzania for 6 months, as a volunteer to work with women and children affected with HIV. She has also listed  things which are considered “normal” and of course she doesn’t fit into them.

Here’s my experience with the “expected” and the “normal” that just don’t go down well with me. The ones in blue are what I do even now…and the ones in green are what I have done or do from time to time.

According to me, “normal” is…

1. to have the same religion as your parents; as if it was hereditary.

2.  to think girls don’t like or enjoy physical intimacy.

3. to dress up so that others notice you.

4. to think you know what’s best for your children.

5. to hide how you feel because it’s not acceptable to others.

6. to be afraid to change your mind about something.

7. to laugh or scorn at those who don’t fit in.

8. to worry about what people will think.

9. to think you’re a good person because you give to charity or pray to God.

10. to blame others for all the unhappiness in your own life.

11. to pray only when you need something.

12. to find it hard to say sorry or make up.

13. to think “karna padta hai” as far as family is concerned.

14. to give up on love because parents don’t approve.

15. to blame the government for every wrong thing.

16. to be stingy while giving to charity.

17. to want others to know when you give to charity.

18. to give up on one’s self.

19. to think that we can control what happens to us

20. to be self-conscious while dancing or laughing out loud.

21. to not wear clothes that make you look fat, even if you want to.

22. to feel thin and fair is beautiful.

23. to give up a job even if you hate it because you’re used to the money.

24. to feel ashamed of admitting one’s own shortcomings.

25. to be unable to apologise to someone younger.

26. to feel hesitant while asking for help from others.

27. to get paralysed by fear.

28. to not stand up for something you believe is right because it’s hard.

29. to think women who give up work to care for children are not empowered.

30. to think that a woman should stay at home and care for the children.

31. to expect women to carry signs of their marriage – ring, chain, sindoor, surname, etc.

32. to think one gender is superior to the other.

33. to “tolerate” same sex love or believe that it is “abnormal”.

34. to think children needn’t be taken seriously.

35. to believe that marks will help you succeed in life.

36. to give something in expectation of a return.

37. to think marriage leads to security or stability.

38. to think getting married is to sacrifice one’s individuality and freedom.

39. to expect people to have both parents, in excellent health, still married.

40. to not know that forgiveness is mainly for oneself and not for the other.

41. to not know that everyone needs to learn to forgive themselves.

42. to scrounge and save, not knowing for what.

43. to not think of the future and spend everything one has.

44. to assume pretty and rich people are already taken 😉

45. to see the grass as greener on the other side.

46. to not be able to give feedback to others – positive or negative.

47. to read popular books and read award-winning movies and like them.

48. to assume that a degree equals to education.

49. to expect a relationship to stay the same forever.

50. to take the road well travelled and stay on it.

Where’s your list??? 🙂

Disclaimer – This post doesn’t look down upon the “normal”, just emphasizes that there is another point of view, which isn’t abnormal… My definition of “normal” is something that a majority of the population does or agrees with and considers those who don’t, as rebels. So even if you do most of the things on this list, but don’t think that others who don’t are “abnormal”, then sorry, YOU ARE NOT NORMAL 🙂

Posted in: attitude, life