Edited 11 Feb 2012
I was going to delete this post as it really is a bit personal to be floating about in blogland but I have decided to let it stay. It was a first draft and I wrote my thoughts down as I was thinking them without any editing. I knew that people would react to it strongly either in defence of the working classes or middle classes. I have no wish to offend anybody and there is nothing 'wrong' with any social class of a person.
The point I was trying to get across was that I personally have let 'where I have come from' hold me back and that is no-ones fault but mine. I have felt that I have lacked the opportunities offered to people from wealthier backgrounds but also accept that with drive and determination we can all make something of our lives. Sometimes though, a persons confidence can be so broken, only their self belief can mend it.
I often feel inadequate for various reasons. Sometimes just the enormity of life and my significance in it makes me feel very small, almost worthless, but my sensible head tells me that each of us have a part to play.
I believe that a lot of my insecurity comes as a result of being from a working class background. My paternal Nan, a true cockney (born within the sound of Bow bells) spent time in a London workhouse. She really knew the meaning of the word poverty. She died over two decades ago from complications of diabetes. I recently found out that her Doctor had told her to go and get a book and read about it. A person needs to be able to read and comprehend what they are reading first Doctor, for a book to be of any use to them!
Carrying a chip on my shoulder, I have found it hard to relate to middle class professionals for a lot of my life. I now try to accept people as individuals but feel that my life experiences have clouded my judgement about certain people.
When I worked as an Administrative Assistant many years ago, I had a boss, who was also Director at the company, who disapproved of the working classes getting educated. She said ‘who will do the labour if they are all out getting degrees?
I had a very basic education in comprehensive schools. However, my lack of education and bad school experience has not stopped me from wanting to learn. In fact, it has satiated my hunger for knowledge and I read a lot about every subject under the Sun.
I never want to be in a situation like my Nan, where lack of education combined with ignorance and poverty kept her at the bottom of the social ladder.
No matter how high I can climb intellectually (although I will never make it socially) I will never forget my working class roots even though I am ashamed to say I despise them for the restrictions they imposed on my family.