Truth refers to the actual state of something that conforms to reality or actual existence. The existence of truth is uncontestable, especially in the context of the self. The ways of knowing are shaped by different factors including the environment, origins, and ancestry. In acknowledging that many truths exist, it is vital to embrace the influences on one’s life. This makes it vital to explore my own truth in terms of the factors that shape my gender identity and sexuality, and how environment and ancestry shape my ways of knowing. This paper is my own story that explores my own truth. Since I was the only child in an extremely religious family, my parents had to make sure that I achieved the best, and conducted myself in accordance with the family and religious values.
My own truth is that I have dyslexia, which is a disorder associated with a learning disability. Dyslexia is evident in my difficulties in fluency and accuracy regarding my reading abilities and short-term memory. Dyslexia also manifested itself through seizures during childhood, which is an indication of brain problem. Some of the factors that have shaped my ways of knowing include the society that I was raised in, the family set up, education, and ancestry. The society imposes significant influences with regard to how language and culture affect perception. I was raised in Santa Cruz implying that my ways of knowing were influenced by the urbanity associated with the town. The family shaped my ways of knowing through the limits imposed by the family values, this is because my family is close-knit and emphasizes on esteemed family values. Family values act as the guiding principles regarding how I conduct myself and perceive things that are taking place within the society. In addition, the family lineage has been characterized by family cohesion and strong religious values, which have been central in influencing my ways of knowing.
My gender identity and individual perceptions regarding gender and sexuality were mainly influenced by the religious ideologies obtained from the church. For instance, the church condemns men adopting a feminine gender identity and vice versa. As a result, I grew up knowing that homosexuality and same sex marriages are not morally correct. Some of the factors that shape me within my environment include the religious values, family values and expectations, and the urban set up of Santa Cruz. These factors impose significant limitations on the individual perceptions regarding current happenings in the society and individual behavior. In addition, my ancestry and roots play a significant role in influencing individual perceptions. In addition, being raised as the only child imposed significant effects on my social relations; this could have resulted in the fluency problems during the course of my growth. This is because the family values are usually transmitted from generation to generation which influences the nature of the family set up. This means that it is vital to have knowledge of one’s ancestry and the ways that ancestry shapes one’s environment.
My upbringing and education has played an integral role in influencing my knowledge on the issues of gender and sexuality. My upbringing was based on religious viewpoints of gender and identity in the sense that men should associate with masculinity and women with femininity. Any change in the gender identities is considered ethically wrong. On the other hand, education helped to explore the realm of gender and sexuality in the context of the post-modern society. This broadened my understanding regarding the relationship between gender, sexuality, and their respective biological and sociological significance. Issues relating to homosexuality and same sex marriages are some of the most uncomfortable ideas in my life. However, the most confusing bit relates to the sociological aspect of gender and sexuality, which is a shift from the biological significance. Individual empowerment is derived from the everyday successes of ordinary people. Achieving one’s goals in life from scratch is not an easy task. To my mind, observing happiness is a significant source of empowerment. My life experiences can be labeled as conservative, this is because they have been my experiences constrained within the limits of family and Christian religion values.