marie claire has teamed up with T2 in an initiative to inspire people to challenge their thoughts and views on significant issues that are pertinent in today’s world. In pop-up boxes in Sydney and Melbourne, people were invited in for a cup of tea and an honest discussion, with the goal of shifting ignorance into knowledge.
We can all do our bit to smash through assumptions and to stop putting people, and situations, in a box. The next time you are with your friends, why not put on the kettle, make a cuppa and talk though an issue that is close to your heart, or theirs? As thought-starters, here are some of the most common assumptions people make:
Assuming that because same-sex marriage was legalised the LGBTIQ community no longer faces prejudice
Same-sex marriage may now be legal in Australia, but we still have a long way to go to end the prejudice our LGBTIQ community experiences. Many LGBTIQ individuals are still cast out, even by their own families, and although their rights are protected by law, gay hate crimes still run rampant. Shockingly, a landmark study in 2018 revealed gay conversion therapy is still taking place and up to 10 per cent of the Australian community is still vulnerable to it.
Assuming because someone’s political views are different, they are wrong
Our views are reflections of our life experiences, and what’s important to one person isn’t necessarily important to another. It’s worth asking if that makes them wrong, or whether they are simply coming from a different angle. With politics, we are asked to pick a side, and while the ‘us versus them’ mentality might be perfectly OK during a game of football, when it comes to politics it can get ugly. Respecting that others have different opinions, and reasons for them, can help to take the sting out of the rivalry.
Assuming that working mums are less involved with their kids
Like it’s not already tough enough for working mums to juggle their workload (at home and in the office), they also have to deal with society’s relentless ‘mum shaming’. There are plenty of reasons mums work, be it out of economic necessity or out of passion for their chosen career. It’s worth remembering that all these women are setting great examples for their kids, who one day will have to go off to work as well.
Assuming homelessness is a choice
It takes a pretty dire situation for someone to resort to sleeping rough. Family violence and abuse, a sudden change in economic situation and mental health issues are but some of the reasons people can find themselves without a roof over their heads. Thinking there is always some safe place for them to go, or someone they can turn to, is yet another assumption. Not everyone is so fortunate as to have support available when the going gets tough.
Assuming depression is a sign of weakness
Depression is an illness that has very little to do with the inner strength of the person suffering. Sadly, the assumption that depression is a sign of weakness has historically made it all the more hard for people to ask for help. Depression can be triggered in various ways, such as a chemical imbalance in the brain or as a result of excessive negative thought patterns. Living, and functioning, with depression takes an incredible amount of strength, and it’s remarkable that sufferers get up and show up in spite of it.
Put the kettle on and help unbox ignorance with us - we have plenty more articles for you to enjoy here.