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What to do if you do not want to grow up

It seems to be age, you have to get married, have children, give birth to new roles ... But you don’t want to be completely. I would like to enjoy life in my own way, learn, travel ... And I always get drawn to my parents, it’s always good there, you don’t have to break yourself. Tell me, is it worth it for me or my parents to worry that I'm stuck in the past? "Lena, 34 years old.

We will answer the question to Lenin a little later, but for now let's talk about childhood as a whole. And at the same time we learn why our childhood began to last longer?
Childhood is one of the difficult stages of development: at this time we acquire a million skills and knowledge, rejoice in every little thing and experience time in a completely different way (pleasant moments stretch for a long time).

What to do if you do not want to grow up

But everything in our world is changing. Including the periodization of development.

Let's follow what childhood looked like at different times.

The French historian Philip Aries conducted a study of the fine arts of the Middle Ages. He was interested, “as in the course of history, the notion of childhood developed in the minds of artists, writers and scientists, and how it differed in different historical epochs”.He managed to find out that, until the 13th century, childhood was barely depicted in paintings. Children's images were found only in religious painting in the form of angels and baby Jesus. But real children were not depicted. Obviously, they did not consider them personally. If all the same children were in the pictures, then they looked like reduced adults. And in medieval Germany the word “child” was generally considered synonymous with the word “fool”. In short, the notion of childhood was of little value. And only in the XVII century on the canvases of artists began to appear portraits of real children, while only the highest layers of society.

Aries studied the clothes of children separately. In the Middle Ages, only a child got out of the swaddling clothes, he was immediately put on a smaller copy of the adult’s suit of the corresponding social status. In the paintings of the XVI – XVII centuries, children's clothing appears, which differs from the adult. But in peasant families, adults and children dressed the same.

F. Aries writes: “The formation of a children's costume has become an external manifestation of deep internal changes in the attitude towards children in society — now they are beginning to occupy an important place in the life of adults.”

Let's talk about learning.Ordinary people in the Middle Ages of their children, up to about 6 years old, didn’t particularly learn anything, because at any moment the child could die. Infant mortality before the XIV century reached 30–35%. It was only after the plague that the medicine improved and people began to pay more attention to hygiene.

Children matured at that time quickly. At the age of 6–7, they were taught basic parenting skills. At 10-11 - they gave to apprentices, in 13-14 "children" already worked at the level of adults, and at 17-18 they tried to separate from relatives and create their own family.

Education in wealthy families began earlier - from 2-3 years. F. Aries cites as an example the children's classes of Louis XIII (beginning of the XVII century). At the age of one and a half, he sang and played the violin. When he was 3 years old, he took part in the celebration of Christmas in 1604, at the same age he learned to read, and in 4 - to write. At the age of 6 he played chess and tennis well, guessed riddles and charades. At 7 years old, his childhood ended abruptly. He changed into adult clothing and began to study hunting, shooting, horse riding, attend theater and group games with adults.

By the way, noble persons, as well as peasants, believed that in 17 years it was time to say goodbye to children's fun and become responsible, serious people.

For hundreds of years, many people have lived according to this scenario - they were born, played, studied, started families, grew old and died. In the twentieth century, everything changed radically - wars, revolutions, social protests, technological and economic innovations ... All of this fell on people unexpectedly and primarily affected immature minds, on growing children.

What to do if you do not want to grow up

We did not have time to look back, as all the “interesting things” began to grow exponentially - new professions, advanced training courses, self-development courses, various skills acquisition courses, a rapidly developing infrastructure, the ability to travel, the Internet as a source of any knowledge at any time! And with how many people from different countries have the opportunity to meet, chat, go on a visit, learn traditions, national cuisine! As my friend says: “Now there are so many interesting things - you don't know what to grab. And before a decent girl had no place to go, except to get married. ”

All these innovations lead to the fact that the desire to create a family goes into the background. Grown up children do not seek to repeat the path of their parents without delay, but are looking for themselves, they are learning more and longer, traveling, and even working children do not want everyone to move out of their parents - this is convenient and profitable.

Why else has it become difficult for us to grow up?

Means of labor. Psychologist D. B. Elkonin believes: "Childhood is the impossibility of including a child in the system of social reproduction." For example, in remote African tribes, children early in life. Two-year-old kids already know how to maintain a fire and take care of younger brothers and sisters. Our children have to learn more skills, and therefore nature stretches the time for learning.

Physiology of the brain. MRI of the brain and psychological studies show that the process of maturation of the brain is indeed slowing. For many young people, some zones work longer than their peers who were born earlier. These are the so-called areas of youth responsible for quick decision making, adventurism, and good adaptation.

By the way, did you notice that middle-aged people who love to learn, who teach, who love to travel, look better than their peers? For example, I know one 60-year-old teacher. He doesn't give him his age

He knows several languages, travels, teaches in Russia, Bulgaria and South Korea.And how many interesting things will tell, if you find yourself with him at the same table! Sometimes he reminds me of a student-adventurer, to whom all the mountains on the shoulder.

Hormones. Many scientists argue that the development of age hormones in a man of the 21st century has stretched over time. So much so that for many now the formation of the body ends not by the age of 17–18, but by 21, or even by 25 years. And there is no violation. All this is evolution.

It is time to answer the main question of the letter: “Is it worth worrying that I was stuck in the past?”

Of course not. If it is comfortable for you and your parents, if you live a full, rich life and you are psychologically enough, then there is no point in worrying. Now age periods are lengthening - this is an ordinary law of evolution. In the end, with nature you can not argue. And you will still have time to meet your fate. And when you want to start a family, you will feel it. Themselves and without advisers.


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