A society is defined as any collection of people living together in a particular area.
The people who make up your society include schoolmates, teaching and non-teaching staff in your school, back home you have your parents, your siblings, and other relations, your friends and peers in your neighbourhood, market women and men, ‘okada’ riders, and other people in the community.
Some other people who also make up the society are people who belong to the same church or mosque. There are some differences in how you relate to each of these people.
When you are at school, you show absolute obedience to the school authority and all school rules and speak properly with respect to your teachers. But, when you are with your parents, siblings, and/or other family members you most probably will switch to your local language that everyone understands. Then, with your grandmother, you still behave with respect and speak your family’s local dialect even if she is educated.
However, you must treat everyone with courtesy and respect, and expect the same treatment from them.
In Nigeria, many people of different ethnicities tend to live together. Despite that, differences may be found in the way people greet each other, dress, and use terms of respect.
Culture is the people’s way of life in any given society. Understanding this also helps us to relate well with people in our society. Culture will, therefore, help determine such things as behaviour, who we are likely to be friends with and the way we dress.
Nevertheless, you still have some problems with the role culture plays though. Sometimes culture can hold onto ideas that you know are not true, or are considered unfair to you.
Some things that your culture expects of you may not suit your lifestyle. For example, your dad may not allow you (female) to become a pilot because he feels it is not a woman’s profession. You also know it is unfair of your culture to insist that females deserve no education. But, how do you deal with these things without being seen as disrespectful?
You must use dialogue, rather than being silent, especially when your culture is expecting something that could be harmful to you or someone else. To be silent when your family wants you to get married as an adolescent could be harmful. Alternatively, keeping silent when your family members start making decisions about your future such as what your career will be. You should always speak up when decisions affecting your life are being made.
You should always speak up when you see someone doing something wrong. If you cannot speak to the person directly, speak to someone else who can speak to the person. This goes a long way in making our society a better place to live in.
You must respect public properties. In other words, as patriotic citizens, you must not destroy public properties, or watch other people destroy public properties.
In case someone doing wrong is a senior person, for instance, report to someone who can correct or discipline the person.
Learn to be who you are expected to be (yourself), at all times, wherever you find yourself, no matter what every other person is doing. People will always know who does what. Yes, in every society, people will always know who is a good girl/boy, and who is a bad girl/boy even in the crowd.
Incidentally, in practically every society, if a child is known to behave badly, people will normally say, “his/her parent did not train him/her well.” This is an insult to your parents. Make sure you do what is right, at all times, everywhere you find yourself, no matter who is there, and or who is doing what.