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Age Appropriate

I became aware yesterday of how pretentious I sound a lot of the time. Especially in writing.

For example, in my last post “Shedding Skin”, I spoke about my experiences with losing friends and the act of dropping toxic people from my life. And as I was writing, I saw how out of my age I sounded. Kind of just… not what a seventeen year old should sound like.

When I say all of this stuff, I don’t mean to sound like I know everything. I know how young I am. I know I have many many years to come, if all goes to plan of course. But I can’t help but feel as though I know some shit, you know?

We as teenagers are so pushed and moulded into becoming the adults we are supposed to be, at an early age. I mean for crying out loud, we have to first choose what kind of course of action our lives will take at age 14, sometimes 13. I chose my GCSE subjects that I would have qualifications in (that will stick to me for the rest of my life, by the way) at age 13. In Year 9. I hope I chose well. Then it’s A levels or Jobs or University and the adults that teach us all of this make us believe that this will be it. Forever. It’s hard not to feel adult when we’re making such adult decisions straight from the onset.

As well as this, teenagers and even children nowadays are so indoctrinated into the adult technological world that there’s almost no escape. Don’t get me wrong, I love Twitter as much as the next white girl but this advance in access to information means that children are exposed to any number of things the moment they open the Google App.

For instance, my little brother (he’s seven) got tablet for his last birthday, and the Christmas before that, an XBox. This means that, unfortunately for my step-mother, he has constant access to anything the internet can throw at him. And that is a terrifying amount of stuff that is definitely not age-appropriate. (Another example, my boyfriend’s younger brother of the same age once went to Google “X-Men” (as a huge comic fan) and accidentally went for “XXX Men”. You can only imagine what his mother walked in on).

Back to my original point: I don’t want to sound like a know-it-all teenager that thinks they’ve lived through it all and knows better. That’s not me, honest.

But I do actually know some stuff. A word to parents and teachers: don’t underestimate your children’s ability to act mature and understanding of the world around them. I know teenagers who have gone through more than many adults could even imagine. I’m not saying they know best or even know what they’re doing half the time, but next time you think they’re acting beyond their age, just remember what it was like. It could save a life.

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