“Lack of time” mentality forces children to grow up faster

Michelle Marchante/Staff Writer

It seems that no matter where you look, people are always in a rush and are never satisfied with just living in the moment. We’re all guilty of it and to an extent it’s not a bad thing. It’s good to have a goal and know the steps needed to achieve it but we tend to forget that we’re not just planning our lives but living it.

Is this anxiety something that has been taught to us since birth or is it a natural inborn tendency? The answer is most likely a mix of both.

It’s natural to find children wanting to be older than what they are, be it because they want to get an M-rated video game that their parents refuse to buy or to be a teenager and be an independent adult. The problem is that as we age, that sense of urgency never leaves us, but continues to grow with us.

We waited impatiently to be in high school, then to become legal adults, graduate and go on to a university. Now we’re impatient to be 21, to get an internship as early as possible, graduate as quickly as we can then find a job that will lead to another job. It never stops.

It’s like we’re waiting for that moment when everything is going to be perfect for us and we’ll finally be able to sit back, relax and enjoy it, but that’s never going to happen. Something will come up, that’s just the way life is, but we need to learn how to take it with stride and find time to enjoy the simple pleasures life offers us.

Think about your best childhood memories. They’re the best because you actually enjoyed the moment. You weren’t worrying about the future. It wasn’t the time for that and this is what our society is forgetting, that there is a time and place for everything.

The effects are easy to see, just look at what your younger siblings, cousins and nieces are wearing. Why does it look so familiar? Perhaps it’s identical to an outfit you have in your closet.

This is because of the “lack of time” society has inflicted upon itself. Children can’t be children anymore. Since they enter pre-k, every equation they solve, every word they learn is so they can one day enter a university. We have children who, at the age of eight, are already thinking about what university they need to go to, we have young children dressing as if they’re teens and we have pre-teens dressing as if they’re in their twenties.

We have campaigns to stop sexualizing women but by making copycat clothes of teen and adult outfits for younger children, we’re only promoting it. Clothes don’t make the woman, but it does affect how she and others perceive her, and by letting young girls imitate outfits that look like they came right out of a Teen Vogue issue, we’re telling them that they can’t enjoy their youth, we’re telling them to be sexy and we’re telling them to grow up immediately. We’re destroying the joys of childhood. We’re forcing them to speed up even if they’re physically and mentally not ready for it.

Let them enjoy being kids. As adults, we need to remember that while planning our life is great, we also need to live it.

About the Author

Michelle Marchante
Michelle Marchante is the 2018-2019 Editor-in-Chief of PantherNOW. Majoring in broadcast journalism, she lives and breathes web, print, radio and TV news 24/7. You can connect with her on Twitter @TweetMichelleM