WHEN ARE AMERICANS GROWN-UP?
It’s my opinion that people come into their adult mind and awareness when they are 10-years-old. I met by best friend when we were ten years old the fist day of 5th grade. That’s 50 years ago now.
I distinctly remember being aware of everything in the world, myself, and others from a grown-up point of view that is not much different than my adult mind now. I wasn’t as knowledgeable then as I am now, but that’s a matter of education and knowledge. A person can still be uneducated and unknowing at a much older age and have an expanding awareness at a much younger age.
It’s also my opinion that people are fully grown at age 15. They know this instinctively. Our forefathers were starting new countries in their teen years, protesting tea taxes and fighting red-coated armies.
Unfortunately, our society tries to keep these teen-agers as children until they are 18 or 21, which is the cause of much of their rebellion and acting-out in institutions and at home. People want to claim their independence, make their own decisions, learn from their own mistakes and embark on a voyage of doing and learning—even if trial and error is difficult and painful.
We used to send kids into the army involuntarily (even during peace time) which gave them time to grow up and toughen up and make them realize the rat race begins with survival instincts. Now, we don’t draft kids into the military. As a result, they are not having their lives placed in danger by outside forces. As a result, I think they are setting up their own life-and-death struggles to “prove” themselves and make a right of passage into adulthood. Unfortunately, it’s by using drugs, drinking and driving, speeding on freeways, getting into gangs, creating domestic violence situations.
I don’t have any solutions to suggest. Are people only grown-up when they face a life or death situation? Are they grown up when they start to think and reason, or realize that they are a thinking entity? Or come to a realization that they have an immortal soul? Are they grown up when they say they are? Or when their parents say they are? Or the schools, the military, the employers? Are they only grown-up when the government legislates that they are? I really don't know.
Care to comment? Please post a comment on my blog. Thanks, Sandy Schairer