An Adult at Eighteen? Not Any More. Of, for the luvva Pete. Excerpt:
“The idea that suddenly at 18 you’re an adult just doesn’t quite ring true,” says child psychologist Laverne Antrobus, who works at London’s Tavistock Clinic.
“My experience of young people is that they still need quite a considerable amount of support and help beyond that age.”
Child psychologists are being given a new directive which is that the age range they work with is increasing from 0-18 to 0-25.
“We are becoming much more aware and appreciating development beyond [the age of 18] and I think it’s a really good initiative,” says Antrobus, who believes we often rush through childhood, wanting our youngsters to achieve key milestones very quickly.
As if we weren’t doing enough already to produce a generation of self-entitled, sheltered special little snowflakes. At least this is the UK and not here (yet) but just wait, some nitwit on this side of the pond will sure as hell think it’s a good idea.
At the end, the article asks the reader this question: What was the moment when you realised you had become an adult? How old were you? I’ll answer that – some time before I was eighteen, actually. I had already been working since I was thirteen or so, first agricultural work, then in selling hunting and fishing gear in an old Woolco store. I worked full-time through most of my last year of high school. When I graduated high school, anxious to start my own life, I got my own apartment within a matter of weeks. I was an adult, and I wanted to live as an adult and be treated as an adult.
I didn’t need support and help to make it on my own. I had the support of my parents, of course – I still do, even though they are 85 and 90. I provide support for my own grown children. As the Old Man is fond of saying, “you never stop being a parent.” But it’s the normal family support one gives an adult offspring, not the same support you give a child.
And of course, the problem here is one of expectations. If you treat a 24 year old as a child, they’ll act like a child. The problem of peripatetic adolescents, of which we seem to have all too many already, won’t be solved by treating increasingly older people like children.
There is one possible bright side to this idea, though. For years I’ve been saying the drinking age, currently set at 21 by the Imperial Federal government, should be reduced to what it was when I was a young man – 18. You are either an adult at 18 or you’re not. But if child psychologists think that adolescence continues until 25, fine – as long as we also prohibit people from drinking, voting or signing contracts until they are 25, as well.
Sauce for the goose, True Believers. Sauce for the goose.