Ping! Off went my text message alert. Group message to my group of friends from Katie.
“What color is this dress?”
I responded: “Oh, that’s a very pretty blue and black dress!”
Another friend countered: “White and gold.”
I looked at the photo again. Huh? There is absolutely NO gold OR white. Taking the high road, I just stated it was a lovely dress, and they should buy it. After all, that was why they were asking, right?
Ping! Off went my text message thirty seconds later.
“What color is this dress?” my daughter in Colorado asks. She also messaged her sisters scattered across the country, as well as my husband. Like he would care about a dress.
And, wait – the same dress as my friend Katie? What is going on?
“Blue and black” I replied.
“Gold and white” wrote my husband, who was in the basement.
Apparently I was outnumbered. Gold and white seemed to be the “winner” according to the rest of my family. Indignant, I grabbed my phone and marched downstairs.
“Really? You call this gold and white?” I demanded of my husband.
“Well, duh, yes” He responded.
I rolled my eyeballs, explained he was color-blind, and noted his daughter’s phones were not working properly.
After a number of heated follow-up texts, there were several questions I asked of myself.
- What the heck is going on?
- And who found this dress?
- And who started this viral mind-blower?
- And how does one get their tweet to go viral so quickly? Oh, wait – that’s another subject.
But more importantly, whose perspective is correct?
Perspective, which is a person’s point of view, is one of my favorite words. It is as unique and individual as the hair on our head and the color of our eyes. We want others to acknowledge our perspective, to understand it, and even agree with our perspective; of course our perspective is the correct way of viewing things, right?
Perspective, whether personal or national, can inspire fascinating conversations, incite lawmakers, and even ignite world wars. It can also bring people together. Think about the people you choose to be with. You are likely to gravitate towards people with a similar perspective on life, lifestyle, spirituality, and values.
However, respecting others’ perspectives is essential in blurring lines of division that are drawn based differences. We must keep in mind that often our perspective is based upon our upbringing, personal experiences, spirutaility, culture, and community, to name a few. Even siblings who grow up together may have different perspetives merely because they have had a different experiences that being an oldest, youngest, middle, or “only” bring.
Varying perspectives make for a colorful and vibrant world of interesting people. Teaching our children to embrace and connect with others who have their own unique perspectives will allow them to grow as humans. It will expand their worldview. It may change their own perspective or inspire others to change theirs.
This applies to sexuality health as well. A comprehensive sexual health curriculum will enable our youth to understand, from a medically-accurate position, the perspective of others when it comes to beliefs, sexual orientation, and influences that shape the uniqueness of each of us. This will influence individuals to become less judgmental and more accepting of others.
After all, perspective is in the mind of the beholder; it is not something that is necessarily wrong or right. It just is.
So, back to the dress. What color do YOU think it is?
According to Gregory Brown and Mitchell Moffit of the innovative AsapScience, the color of the dress is whatever color your mind perceives it to be. Our perspective, whether it is a color or an idea, is individual and should be respected. Keep an open mind to others’ perspectives and use it to spark informative, fascinating, and inspiring conversations.
Who knew a blue and black dress could spark so much conversation and fun?
(Images: Dollar Photo Club)