• rio

living with social standards

生きづらさとの共生

私は最近日本社会で自分らしく生きていく方法を模索している。私は、10代前半の頃から「人と違うこと」が一般的に受け入れられにくい日本社会で生きづらさを感じていたけれど、最近より「自分」を貫き続けることの難しさを強く感じるようになった。生きていく中で自分に「これがいい!」という思いや信念があったとしても、それを持ち続けるにはかなりのエネルギーが必要とされる。自分の意見を貫いて生きていくことは、大多数の意見を「正解」としがちな日本の社会ではさらに大変だと思う。

I have been searching for a way to live while being true to myself in Japanese society. Even before my teenage years, I felt a difficulty in being myself somewhere in my heart in Japanese society, and I have been feeling it even more strongly than before. If you try to go your own way, it requires a lot of energy to persevere. Sticking to your guns is especially difficult in Japanese society where the voice of the majority is believed to be right.

アメリカ留学を終えて、再び日本の生活に戻ると、今まで以上に生きづらさを感じるようになった。振り返ってみると、私は留学中に人とは違うことを誇ることができる大切さを感じて生きていた。私がアメリカで出会った人たちは、とにかく自分らしさを大切にしていて、それは周りを気にしながら人と違うことをしてきた私にとって衝撃的だった。そして、それぞれの個性に対して「とってもクール!」「最高!」と褒め合い、大事にする文化が素敵だった。それぞれの選択が正しいと思わせてくれるような環境で過ごした時間は私を変えて、日本だと体型を気にして着られない服装に挑戦したり、ノーメイクで過ごす日が増えた。フェミニズムに出会って自分の持つ選択肢を再認識したことなども加わって、いろんな私の中の変化が今感じている生きづらさを生み出している気がする。

After my study abroad in the US, I started to feel this difficulty even more living in Japan. Looking back at my experience in the US, I realized that I was living every day valuing people's differences and how important that is. I was always surrounded by people who were proud of their individuality which really impressed and shocked me as a person who was always worrying about how others saw me when I did something different. In addition, the people I met in the US usually gave compliments to people who were doing something unique, saying things like “This is cool!” and “This is awesome!” I felt that they have a culture of respecting individuality and that I should do this too. Just like this, my environment changed me. I tried to start not caring about how others saw me too much, so I wore clothes that I never wore in Japan that always made me self conscious about my body, and started to not wear makeup as much. My encounter with feminism also influenced me, which made me realize the options and choices that I have that I never saw before. I think these changes within me have led to me feeling how suffocating society is.