Thanks for the comments Jason, well thought out and reasoned as always. I absolutely agree that it takes a lifetime to rid ourselves of the expectations of others. While I often tell myself I don’t care what the group thinks — if I need to constantly remind myself of this fact, I’m just trying to convince myself.
I suppose we all need to balance the expectations of the group against our own integrity. And the most important thing is making sure we can still look at ourselves in the mirror the next morning.