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I was raised by both my parents while growing up. My parents barely finished high school and never went to college so they were not the type of parents who pushed college careers nor did they have any sort of college fund set aside for us. They always helped with homework but never pushed us to do better. Now that they see my accomplishments from attending college they are very proud of me and supportive for me to finish. My mom even went back to college after seeing me and my sister do it, and she got an accounting degree at the age of 40. My parents came from poor families and not many college graduates. We often had no spending money or even good running vehicles but they always gave us love and we were happy with all of the small things we had. My parents used the permissive parenting style, at least for me and my sister; they never really used any type of punishments. They would tell us we were grounded from something but the next day we would be doing the things we were grounded from. We were always nurtured and my parents were easy to talk to. My dad taught us many things from riding a bike to driving a car; he never gave up on us and always gave words of wisdom. There were times when were yelled at and even spanked a few times, but the good times always overcame those bad. I have 3 sisters and 1 brother who are all younger than me. Being the oldest of 5 children had its good and bad occasions. Since I was the oldest I always was given first option on things like movies, where to eat and who got to play with what toys. I was also faced with a lot of responsibility being the oldest, I was expected to watch the other kids a lot to make sure they did not get hurt. Some days I felt more like a mother than a child but they looked up to me and listened to me so I felt good. To this day I still look after them and make sure they are doing the right things and doing well in school. I think that the "birth order" material is pretty close to describing all of us.
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Part 2: Physical Development
I am 5 ft. 51/2 inches tall and I weigh about 155 pounds. I think that I am average for my age; I don't consider myself obese or too skinny. Last summer I weighed 215 pounds 6 weeks after having my son, I was very hard on myself about my weight and I started to diet. Since last summer I have dropped to 155 pounds and I am very happy with myself now. As for my appearance I think that I am pretty, I am often told that I am beautiful by both men and women and also my family. My sister's and brother are also very good looking and we have been complimented by people since we were little about our looks. I don't consider myself to be better than other people; instead I often hope that I look as good as other people. I gained a lot of stretch marks and extra skin on my stomach from having children, I often wish to get rid of those things just to be able to wear a bikini, but that is hard to do. Starting last summer I mapped out a mile walk for myself and I walked it everyday, during the winter I walked on my treadmill everyday. Once the weight started to come off I realized I would have to do sit-ups to tighten my stomach, so I started to do sit-ups every night and now I do at least 100 before bed every night. My sisters and brother are all physically fit also, we have all been in some sort of physical sports and we all value our looks and physical appearances. All 4 of us girls are often competitive in our looks and we all try our hardest to look just as good as each other if not better.
Part 3: Moral/Religious Development
Morals are important to me and I would place myself in stage 4 in Kohlberg's stages of development because I am at that point in my life where I like everything to be in order and proper behavior gets you farther then anything else. I always make decisions based on "Law and Order." I have been a Lutheran for as long as I can remember. Religion is important to me but I often lack on going to church enough. Religion was never a big part in our lives growing up, we went to Sunday school and church when we were little but we always had to find a ride because church was not something that my parents were into doing on their Sunday's off of work. I was confirmed at Zion Lutheran Church, it was a small church in the country just a few miles from home. It was harder to attend church as we got older because the other members often talked about our parents because they did not go to church and their children often teased us because we did not have much money, so once I was confirmed I did not go back to that church. Me and my husband joined a Lutheran church in the town we live in but I seldom make it to church, I always tell myself I should go more often but it never seems to happen. Now that I have missed so many church services I am afraid of what people will say if I do go since I have not gone in so long. I pray quite often and thank God for all the great things I have and I have always prayed and believed in God. I plan to help my children by taking them to Sunday school and making church an important part of their lives.