Adult? I doubt that…

“Am I old enough to make the decisions of an adult and to live on my own,” many teenagers ask.  The answer to this common question is more difficult than the average teenager would like it to be as adulthood is not determined simply by the age of the individual.  Rather, hatching out of the cocoon of the adolescent life is based on the maturity of an individual to make a decision that effects the well being of his or her future self, rather than his or her present self, and that has a no negative effect on other individuals.  As well, one may only be categorized as an adult if he or she take responsibility for her actions and assignments in life. The drunkard who only cares about intoxicating himself, the man down the street that is infuriated when the most minuscule events do not turn for his favor, and the individual who throws trash all over the highway are hardly adults.

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The person who has been told to check the strength of the beams to be sure that they can hold the proper weight, but simply signs it off without potentially finding a vital hazard can hardly count himself as an adult.  In the end, the individual who makes the mature decision to not get drunk every night, to be calm when things do not go his way, and to complete his assignments to the best of his ability while taking full responsibility for his actions, is the true adult in the room.

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To sum up what it means to be not an caterpillar, not a hatching cocoon, but a full grown butterfly, individual maturity in making decisions in all areas and categories of life is essential.  An adult can be as young as possible and an adolescent can be as old as possible; it all depends on the extent at which the individual utilizes his maturity in making decisions that effect him and those around him.

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2 Responses to Adult? I doubt that…

  1. Jacob Blevins says:

    I see your position. The hungry father feeding his family is a proper example of an exception. Acting in the interest of others is a key point.

  2. Alexander Lopez says:

    Without a doubt, taking responsibility for one’s actions is a huge problem plaguing every society. I like to associated these types of negligence with immaturity and therefore I agree that a negligent person does not fit the description of an adult. However, you mentioned that an adult is someone who makes choices to benefit their future selves without negatively impacting others. I believe this definition is too narrow, as a true adult may often have to make hard decisions that can both negatively impacts him or herself or other people. For example, a hungry father could choose to feed himself the last of the food or he could choose to give it to his family. Feeding himself certainly benefits him the most, but a mature person knows that they cannot always act in their own interest. I think this is what you started to touch on at the very end, but your opening statements seemed a little vague on the subject.

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