My friend Willem wrote an article about the profound disrespect for adolescence imbedded in our culture. He takes a piece of NPR journalism to task for perpetuating this myth while reporting on a neuroscientist’s research into adolescent brain development in a desperate attempt to “cope with” and “survive” her own teenage sons.
Willem expertly laid bare the cultural doctrine of disdain for youth, and scapegoating (teens fight wars, but old men RUN them!) hidden in this “research” and “reporting.” Rather than teen brains being “incomplete,” flawed, lacking, he says, they’re perfectly wired to take risks, which is actually vital to human culture and human survival. Children excel at Play, Teens excel at Risk, Adults excel at Providing, Elders excel at Story. It’s a vital, beautiful cycle, repeating perpetually. Willem concludes with the following assertion:
Consider that if you haven’t done these things to your fullest ability, in your own time, then you haven’t lived.
When I read those words, I wept. Seriously, literally wept. Continue reading ‘Teen hate, adult regrets’