Thursday, September 23, 2010

Homeless Culture: Independence

There is a sense of freedom that the homeless have that no one else has. No need to pay bills, to clean up house, to deal with neighbors, to mow the lawn, to get up for work at a certain time, to deal with all the stresses that accompany daily middle class life. A few mistakenly assume that homelessness is pure freedom from responsibility—that it most certainly is not. One’s camp still must be cleaned and there are still people to deal with (in some ways more difficult people), but there is certainly less responsibility being homeless than being housed. And this freedom is frustrating at first. Freedom is, of course, a two-edged sword, for less responsibility means less control, less opportunity for self change. But it can mean a reduction of a certain kind of stress, which, over time, the homeless appreciate and cherish.

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