Society has an insidious way of tricking people into doing what it wants. Here are some lies we were sold that are actually not true.
College is Critical
Kids growing up in the nineties had the message that college leads to success drilled into them for as long as they can remember. Now, these kids are adults saddled with outrageous debt burdens.
Hard Work Pays Off
If you work hard, you’ll get everything you want in life.
What a load of bull. Millions of people work hard every day with nothing to show for it. If you want to be successful, you need to work smarter, not harder.
You Don’t Want a “Dirty Job”
Society derides sanitation workers, but they make bank! They also provide an essential service. Why do we constantly talk trash about waste management?
Men Lack the Skills for Domestic Labor
How many televisions shows feature men who can’t figure out how to do basic tasks like washing the dishes or putting away the groceries?
Society tries to tell us men are incapable of helping out at home. They’re not. Men, be better.
Anger Isn’t an Emotion
Society loves to shout that women are more emotional while men scream obscenities at each other and punch walls when they don’t get their way.
Sorry to break it to you fellows, but anger is, in fact, an emotion. And when you’re angry, you’re having an emotional outburst.
Marriage Brings Women Happiness
Young women are inundated with the message that marriage solves all their problems and is critical to eternal happiness.
Reality is far from fantasy. Single women tend to be happier than their married counterparts. Marriage does tend to increase men’s happiness, though.
Kids are Essential for Fulfillment
Society needs kids to thrive, so it pushes the false narrative that children are fundamental to fulfillment. Actually, plenty of people find happiness while remaining blissfully child-free.
Parenthood is for Everyone
The idea that kids are essential to happiness pushes another false narrative that says everyone should be parents.
The opposite is actually true. Most people don’t have the skills, fortitude, or patience for child-rearing. They end up abusing their children, causing never-ending cycles of trauma.
We should leave parenthood to those who genuinely want to be parents.
Low Wage Workers Don’t Deserve Happiness
They should get a better job if they want to *checks notes* and survive. The common refrain tells us that those working low-skill jobs don’t deserve a living wage.
That’s not true. First, the original intent of the minimum wage was to provide a living wage. Second, most low skills jobs are essential. Someone needs to do them. Why don’t these people deserve a living wage?
The US is a Meritocracy
One of society’s most insidious lies is that the US is a meritocracy. If you’re smart and talented, you will be successful.
That’s so far from reality that it’s not even funny. Millions of talented kids don’t get the opportunity to excel. They’re pushed into underfunded schools, forced to work through high and watch younger siblings, and never have the chance to succeed.
Meanwhile, wealthy kids get showered with tutors, books, educational opportunities, internships, and more. When they ultimately succeed, they ignore all the gifts and pretend it is all on their own merit.
Men Aren’t Safe Around Kids
Society decided to lump all men into a creepy category. Men can’t take their kids to parks or actively father without getting side-eyed. Teenage boys can’t babysit. Male nannies, primary school teachers, and daycare workers are frowned upon.
Men are fully capable of childrearing, and the vast majority would give their lives to save a child.
There Isn’t Enough for Everyone
A scarcity mindset tricks us into believing there isn’t enough for everyone, a myth society happily promotes. There are plenty of resources to ensure every human has a reasonable standard of living.
However, providing everyone would reduce profits for the wealthiest among us, and that’s not acceptable.
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Melanie launched Partners in Fire in 2017 to document her quest for financial independence with a mix of finance, fun, and solving the world’s problems. She’s self educated in personal finance and passionate about fighting systematic problems that prevent others from achieving their own financial goals. She also loves travel, anthropology, gaming and her cats.