Breaking free from society’s standards

Claire Cady, Reporter

Whether said or not, there are rules or ideas that are accepted by society and seen as correct. Everyone seems to follow them without question or much thought, and it is often seen as different or weird if one doesn’t follow them. There are many examples that society may not realize are unsaid “rules” of life.

On TheEmotionMachine.com, Steve Handel explored 8 things society wants people to do, but they really don’t. Handel said, “At an early age, we need guidance before we can learn to live in the world of our own. Unfortunately, during this time we can get a lot of ideas stuck in our head that aren’t necessarily helpful or true.” Some examples of these “unhelpful truths” are having to get married and have kids, the idea that owning a ton of things makes you happy, or having to go to college. 

If one chooses a different path in life it can be viewed as uncanny. Handel says, “Sometimes it’s difficult to imagine how someone would even live their life without this…so it’s hard not to feel the pressure to conform to this lifestyle.” Another example is the idea that owning tons of things makes one happy. Although it’s quite often assumed, it’s not true and shouldn’t be praised. Handel mentions that individuals who are wealthy are still likely to suffer from depression or anxiety. 

A big one that is especially present in high school student’s lives and currently for BCHS seniors is going to college. It’s the typical thing to do, but it’s not for everyone. People assume that to get a good job, you have to attend college. However that’s not always the case. Handel gives 3 examples of successful people who were college dropouts: Bill Gates, Mark Zuckerberg, and Steve Jobs.

Not all social norms are bad. There are many unsaid expectations of BCHS that students follow, even though they’re not exactly in the handbook or taught in class. Everyone knows the fight song, and it’s accepted that one should know it. However, there’s no class that teaches it. 

Sophomore Drew Knapp said, “When we sing the fight song, it’s a great feeling because it reminds me of how close together our community is.” Another example is wearing t-shirts or long sleeves under the polos. Almost everyone does this, but most likely doesn’t remember why. Some more are scrolling through Twitter for announcements, putting sports bags in Mrs. Shaw’s room, only wearing athleisure on out of uniform day, and different floors being where different grades hang out (before COVID). These little factors of BCHS are part of what makes it a community, not just a school.