Learning and Exploring

On Rebels

Another polished up draft.

I loved the categories of Gretchen Rubin’s The Four Tendencies. It’s not at all profound and not as helpful as I wanted beyond the original categories (at least for Rebels, and I already knew myself before her explanation, I knew I rebelled against others and myself), but the scheme is very useful without being absurdly and unscientifically and unrealistically limiting like personality typing. I found the other explanations, for other people and to see that I lean Questioner helpful, I do think they weren’t super deep and were stereotyped, but the┬áRebel section just seemed complete stereotype.

I’m starting to think that most of the stereotype of rebels comes from Obliger-rebellion. Maybe she mentions this? But then she put so much stereotyping on Rebels. Anyway. If you feel the need to rebel, if you make a production of rebellion, that seems to belie the actual inner Rebel/contrarian. We don’t actually do anything we don’t want to do, we are in a constant stasis of rebellion/resistance/contrariness, it’s our norm. I think that’s is part of why I neither stand out nor conform. I just am. It is normal to me to have low-level pervasive contrariness as an undercurrent, not any “reason” for it.

In my tiny church bubble almost every teen professed faith (Upholders and Obligers) or radically “went off the deep end” (more stereotypical Rebels?) except me and a sparse other few. Of those who originally professed, those who left the faith also went beserk, rejecting everything they had known, not merely the faith but the morals, the worldviews, everything pell-mell without analyzing any of it (Obliger rebellion).

And then there was me, not a believer but not making a public pronouncement of not being a Christian (I was afraid until I was older and then I was afraid of lying, so compulsively started pointing it out) and throwing the baby out with the bathwater. I think there might have been a few other quiet intellectual dissenters (I didn’t fit this either, I had a side that leaned this way, but my emotional and mental issues were louder although I didn’t want them seen), probably Questioner types, but the norm was the Obliger/Upholder group plus the forthrightly, go against everything immediately people, more stereotypical Rebels although not 100% sure they were Rebels, maybe they leaned Rebel/Obliger while I was Rebel/Questioner and that made the difference.


  • Elizabeth

    This is really interesting seeing how your thought processes/temperament react to things a bit and how you explained that you don’t quite fit perfectly into one thing. Especially how you combined it with faith. It’s just really cool, and it’s something I’ve been personally fascinated with lately.

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