Keeping An Open Mind In College Is An Absolute Must

Keeping An Open Mind In College Is An Absolute Must

"No matter what college or university you are attending, please remember the importance of respect and keeping an open mind."

Before people get angry at the title of this article, please hear me out and do not make assumptions about myself or my character. I, just like you, am entitled to my own opinion. Yes, I understand there are numerous reasons for individuals in this country to not be in favor of our president. Even though you may not be his biggest fan, that most definitely does not give you the right to disrespect him, any of the other leaders of our country, or their supporters. These are the people dedicating their lives to lead us and our country in the right direction; they at least deserve basic respect- even if you do not agree with them. If you feel something needs to be challenged or changed, make your voice heard in a classy and respectful way.

As an incoming college freshman, I am quite aware of the challenges I am about to face in the classroom and the college environment in general. I know that there will not be many other students that share my conservative beliefs. This used to frighten and intimidate me, but now I realize it will be such an amazing learning experience and will only make me stronger. I am not and will not be afraid to stand up for myself and the beliefs I hold. I will listen to others and be respectful of their thoughts, no matter what they are. I will keep an open mind and consider different perspectives, and hopefully others will do the same for me. One thing I will not do is allow people to trash-talk and wish bad luck on our president. At the end of the day, he is the leader of this country whether you like it or not. Wishing poor things on him will not do anyone any type of good.

It is a given that there will be some people who will not give me a chance and jump to stereotyped conclusions. There will be the people that call me names and make assumptions about my character and my personal life. Although these types of people do exist, I will be the bigger person and wish them well with respect. I do have faith that there will be other students who are willing to hear me out and have an open mind. I hope that there will be people with different perspectives that are able to have a mature political discussion, whether it be inside or outside a classroom.

No matter what college or university you are attending, please remember the importance of respect and an open mind. Not only will this allow for interesting and multi-dimensional conversation, but it will help to start uniting this greatly divided country.

Cover Image Credit: The Odyssey Online

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To The Parent Who Chose Addiction

Thank you for giving me a stronger bond with our family.


When I was younger I resented you, I hated every ounce of you, and I used to question why God would give me a parent like you. Not now. Now I see the beauty and the blessings behind having an addict for a parent. If you're reading this, it isn't meant to hurt you, but rather to thank you.

Thank you for choosing your addiction over me.

Throughout my life, you have always chosen the addiction over my programs, my swim meets or even a simple movie night. You joke about it now or act as if I never questioned if you would wake up the next morning from your pill and alcohol-induced sleep, but I thank you for this. I thank you because I gained a relationship with God. The amount of time I spent praying for you strengthened our relationship in ways I could never explain.

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Thank you for giving me a stronger bond with our family.

The amount of hurt and disappointment our family has gone through has brought us closer together. I have a relationship with Nanny and Pop that would never be as strong as it is today if you had been in the picture from day one. That in itself is a blessing.

Thank you for showing me how to love.

From your absence, I have learned how to love unconditionally. I want you to know that even though you weren't here, I love you most of all. No matter the amount of heartbreak, tears, and pain I've felt, you will always be my greatest love.

Thank you for making me strong.

Thank you for leaving and for showing me how to be independent. From you, I have learned that I do not need anyone else to prove to me that I am worthy of being loved. From you, I have learned that life is always hard, but you shouldn't give into the things that make you feel good for a short while, but should search for the real happiness in life.

Most of all, thank you for showing me how to turn my hurt into motivation.

I have learned that the cycle of addiction is not something that will continue into my life. You have hurt me more than anyone, but through that hurt, I have pushed myself to become the best version of myself.

Thank you for choosing the addiction over me because you've made me stronger, wiser, and loving than I ever could've been before.

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When You Make A Girl An Aunt, You Change Her World In All The Best Ways

When you make a girl an aunt, you make her the happiest girl in the world.


My brother and his wife recently blessed our family with the sweetest bundle of joy on planet earth. OK, I may be a little bias but I believe it to be completely true. I have never been baby crazy, but this sweet-cheeked angel is the only exception. I am at an age where I do not want children yet, but being able to love on my nephew like he is my own is so satisfying.

When you make a girl an aunt, you make her a very protective person.

From making sure the car seat is strapped in properly before every trip, to watching baby boy breathe while he sleeps, you'll never meet someone, besides mommy and daddy of course, who is more concerned with the safety of that little person than me.

When you make a girl an aunt, you give her a miniature best friend.

There is something about an aunt that is so fun. An aunt is a person you go to when you think you're in trouble or when you want something mom and dad said you couldn't have. An aunt is someone who takes you to get ice cream and play in the park to cool down after having a temper tantrum. I can't wait to be the one he runs to.

When you make a girl an aunt, she gets to skip on the difficulty of disciplining.

Being an aunt means you get to be fun. Not to say I wouldn't correct my nephew if he were behaving poorly, but for the most part, I get to giggle and play and leave the hard stuff for my brother.

When you make a girl an aunt, you give her the best listening ears.

As of right now I only listen to the sweet coos and hungry cries but I am fully prepared to listen to all the problems in his life in the future.

When you make a girl an aunt, you make her the best advice giver.

By the time my nephew needs advice, hopefully, I will have all of my life lessons perfected into relatable stories.

When you make a girl an aunt, you make her a number-one fan

Anything you do in life sweet boy, I will be cheering you on. I already know you are going to do great things.

When you make a girl an aunt, she learns what true love is.

The love I have for my nephew is so pure. Its the love that is just there. I don't have to choose to show love every day, I don't have to forgive, I don't have to worry if it is reciprocated, it is just there.

When you make a girl an aunt, you make her the happiest person in the world.

I cannot wait to watch my precious nephew grow into the amazing person that I know he is going to be.

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