A Thing That Killed More Dreams Than Anything Else

The fear of what people will say

Florin Marchis
4 min readSep 14, 2021


introverted boy in class hugging a book
Image created by Mikhail Nilov, from Pexels

Children are smarter than their parents may think. They can be aware of things that their parents do and they can see even when they are lied to. Children have their fears and often their fears may seem illogical to their parents. It doesn't mean these fears are not real, or serious.

Many times parents are sending the wrong signals to their kids, by their actions, and by their uncontrolled behavior in front of the little ones. What parents don’t realize sometimes is that each one of their actions will shape the future adults that their children will become and that can be for a lifetime. The fears of a child must not be subject to laughter and they must be seriously dealt with, otherwise, they can lead to anxiety and depression for the long term.

A Sad Story

We can use this sad story as an example. A little boy has a native passion for the arts. He likes music, painting, drawing, writing, dancing, and spending a lot of time in nature.

The introverted child of many talents

He is the introvert type and he also has a native talent for these passions of his. The parents will encourage him about these talents while he is still a kid, but later, they are trying to show him a different path, to learn in a school that will allow him to have a job in a better domain of activity, that brings more money.

The child does not feel connected with that path at all, but he will follow it because he wants to please his parents. His relatives are happy about the choice too. He wants to be accepted by his community and by society. The boy wants something else, but he fears what the people close to him will say. He wants to sing and he has a great talent for singing and dancing. Maybe one day he will use his talent, but not now, as he has to follow the path shown by his parents. If they didn't succeed in life, maybe he will.

The fake adult

The child becomes an adult. In his 30’s he is working in a popular IT company, but he is never happy. He hates his work, and especially the 9 to 5 schedule. He considers he is too old to do something else. He fears what people would say if he would make a sudden change. What if it doesn't work? The fear of other people’s opinions is so deeply rooted in him that he feels powerless and he knows he will never chase his dreams of being a performer on stage.

All these personal development gurus are telling him that he should always follow his dreams, no matter what. But, they are not paying him to try, right? You need money and sometimes, when you try to do what you enjoy the most, money comes only later. It is not sustainable until you reach success, but achieving success is a long-term thing…

Fear — One of the Biggest Obstacles In Life

The fear of what people say in an introverted individual who also has some social anxiety can worsen this condition to a point that this individual becomes isolated and doesn’t enjoy the company of others, seeing all people as judgemental. Most of the time the roots of the problem are found in this individual’s childhood.

Parents should not raise their children in fear, because fear is the enemy of curiosity, of discovery, of excitement, of overcoming limitations. If parents, but also some of the close relatives are constantly making a child feel bad for the things the kid enjoys doing, this behavior is one of the most powerful triggers of anxiety and depression in children.

Fear (on its negative side, as there is also a positive side when fear protects children from making mistakes and stupid things) is one big obstacle because it prevents people from fulfilling their dreams. Some people don’t even get the chance to try, fail and learn a lesson from the experience, because they fear too much to try, of what people will say if they fail.

The thing that killed more dreams than anything else is the fear of what people will say. This fear is either induced by parents, by relatives, by strangers or is developed inside the mind and the heart of a child when the child is often criticized for everything. It is the fear of other people’s opinions. It is the fear of not being appreciated, loved, and accepted by the community. It is the fear of living the life one deserves.



Florin Marchis

Digital marketing specialist from Romania, writing about nature, technology, self-improvement, spirituality, marketing, relationships, and travel.