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Thread: What Maturity Isn't

  1. #1

    Default What Maturity Isn't

    It's another post linking to something someone else wrote. And, it's kind of long...wait, come back! It's also quite interesting and talks a lot about diapers and stuff. Sorry, that's a big lie. The word "infant" does appear, but it's really nothing more than a cracking good read about what parents tell kids directly and indirectly about growing up.

    Overcoming Bias: Against Maturity

    Other observations on misconceptions of maturity are welcome. If anyone at all posts to it, I'll get back and throw in some of my own.

  2. #2

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    *gears whirring, mind slipping, smoke pouring out of ears*

    It's tough trying to remember back to the first time (or as close as I can get to it) I was told "grow up", or "act like an adult", or some facsimile of it. Parents, Grandparents, and teachers all supply fuel to the "maturity" fire. Children have a strong innate desire to emulate as part of the process of learning, they also have a need for acceptance from their loved ones, so they tend to do, or say, things that gain the most praise. That's not the exclusive motivator for advancement when we are young, but it is a large part of it. The seeds of our ideas of maturity are planted early, and the battle commences.

    I actually had a moment in my life similar to the authors, related to religion, except that, as a preteen, when I questioned Father Bob,(not his real name) the leader of our Episcopal Church, about why we had to pray a particular prayer as a rote part of our service rather than out of individual need or desire, he actually listened and considered what I had to say, *ulp* and he actually changed the service. Blew my young mind.

    My misconception up to that point (as put there by the adults in my more formative years) was that, as a child, I had no value or input that would be valid in the "world of Adult Things". Even in the turmoil that was my childhood, I came away from that with a greater sense of self than I had ever had before.

  3. #3

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    I think my parents were quite good in that they didn't say stuff like "you'll understand when you're older" (or at least I can't recall them saying that). They do however lie about certain stuff, which is really annoying because they don't think I would have remembered...

    What I do remember is that at school the foucs was not "act mature", but "don't act immature!".
    The famous line was: "Act your age, not your shoe size!"

    And if you misbehaved at school, sometimes you would get sent back to the infant class (not to play I think they just had to do their work there).
    Or if the whole class was being loud, it was always "if you act like children you'll be treated like children", and having to fold arms and put fingers on lips.

    Point is, for me it's not like we're immature aiming towards maturity. It's more like at any given moment we've just escaped immaturity and are trying to flee! Maturity is a lack of something.

    I'm not sure if this way is better or worse.

    One misconception for me differently was the idea that everything would fall into place at some point. I remember knowing this guy who was 18 when I was maybe 13. Now we seemed very much like an adult (he did look and act the part more than the average 18 year old to be fair), and that seemed like a distant thing. I felt really weird when I remembered him when I turned 18, because I felt a little cheated.
    I'm 18 and I'm not an adult! Even worse: that guy probably wasn't either!

    I wonder when we become 'adults'. I wonder if calling myself an adult will just mean I'm significantly not childish, and will be more of label that only exists because I need to use its opposite...

  4. #4

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    I loved the irony of the 'act your age not your shoe size' when I was 13 I had size 13(UK) feet , now they're size 14(UK).

  5. #5

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    Wow that was certainly a nice read. I always find it interesting what others think on maturity. I really liked how it mentioned never stopping maturing. To me that seems one of the most left out parts of maturity. Good find Trevor!

  6. #6

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    My favorite way to refute any "Act your age" line is to respond, "We are acting our age. We are not, however, acting yours."

  7. #7

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    maintaining appearances is extremely important if you don't want to royally fuck your chances at success over.

    maturity = conforming to norms through experience. it's not clever to go against the grain in this case.

  8. #8

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    I would have to say that maturity is an illusion. No it's a plague like "normality". Both of these concepts actually hold back intelligence. As we grow older and "mature" we lose that natural inquisitiveness that most of us have as children. This is the most tragic part of growing up to me because as adults we are capable of comprehending so much more. But because we are taught as teenagers that asking questions is a bad thing we do not get the information so our minds don't grow. Now it's not like teachers are standing in classrooms spouting this stuff, society teaches us this. In fact most of the teachers i have had through out my life have strived to teach just the opposite, to ask questions to learn as much as possible. the teachers that taught this have always been my favorites. and the fact that parents are trying to force this concept of maturity on to children at a younger and younger age is deplorable. From what I have seen in my life people that have found a healthy balance between childishness and adulthood are happier than normal people. So in the end i guess it is up to the individual to define what maturity really is. Well thats my

  9. #9

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    Yeah, I think the whole thing is really tricky because to me when you talk about maturity it depends on the exact situation that you're talking about.


    There's a big difference between viewing "childish" questions as immature and viewing irritating, irresponsible or disrespectful acts as immature. A lot of times children may not clean up after themselves or they may throw tantrums. To me, if someone older does the same, I view them as immature. In that regard, maturity is a very good thing.

    But at the same time I agree that a lot of times children and teenagers aren't taken as seriously as they should be and are forced to fit certain molds. That's why it's so tough to discuss...it depends on the exact situation.


    The other thing that's interesting/frustrating is that I really do think there are things that you learn as you get older. Most adults I know look back at things they did as teenagers and feel like they were so stupid back then and really grew a lot. So, when they see current teenagers doing the same thing, they tend to view it as something they'll grow out of, and it gives the adults a sense of superiority. To me, that's just natural, even though it needs to controlled.


    I always feel like both sides need to look at it from both angles. Adults need to remember that teens are teens...they aren't perfect but can also have great thoughts and ideas. That doesn't mean that they don't need boundaries and don't need to be taught things either, though.

    At the same time, teens need to realize that oftentimes adults are trying to help them and make there lives better, not boss them around. That doesn't mean they shouldn't share their thoughts and input and shouldn't feel like adults are perfect.

  10. #10

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    Quote Originally Posted by Charlie F View Post
    What I do remember is that at school the foucs was not "act mature", but "don't act immature!".
    The famous line was: "Act your age, not your shoe size!"
    at school, and even at college now, we are also encouraged not to be immature, but we can be as silly as we like, if it means we'll remember the stuff and dont disrupt the lecture.



    Quote Originally Posted by Charlie F View Post
    One misconception for me differently was the idea that everything would fall into place at some point. I remember knowing this guy who was 18 when I was maybe 13. Now we seemed very much like an adult (he did look and act the part more than the average 18 year old to be fair), and that seemed like a distant thing. I felt really weird when I remembered him when I turned 18, because I felt a little cheated.
    I'm 18 and I'm not an adult! Even worse: that guy probably wasn't either!
    I always remember looking up to the older girls in my street thinking 'wow theyre so big, one day im going to be like them'. I really thought being an adult would just snap into place, but it hasnt yet. But im still a babe, only 18 lol

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