The duration of human maturation now includes an additional 4–6-year pre-adult period. “Emerging adulthood” is used to explain problems of delays in learning about intimacy and mutual support, socialization, and the attainment of social skills needed for mating and reproduction.
Social scientists contend that the period of emerging adulthood has an “evolutionary context” and cite developmental markers as evidence to support the rapidly growing consensus of the hypothesis that post-adolescents require protection as they are still learning and maturing.
Society, with poor understanding of personal development, influenced by dogmatism and false beliefs, is producing children in a way that is not well optimized. It doesn’t seem to be getting better, either. Rather, it seems to be going in the opposite direction, towards inhibition of maturation.
Modern psychology’s new developmental phase, “emerging adulthood”, describes individuals who did not not socially mature but have reached biological maturation. It is a way of further categorizing people into age groups to explain the effects of predefined stations in life.
Looking for something to attribute this phenomenon, social scientists point to the further development of the prefrontal cortex that continues to develop into the early twenties. This single-factor hypothesis has scientific consensus.
But how can they be so sure that they’re correct? How did they rule out developmental socialization as a factor?
During early college years, emerging adults exercise freedom they have never experienced. Many find themselves in out of control situations, drunk, hurting themselves and others, exhibiting behavior that does not quite fit the definition of informed consensual sex.
Is this harmful behavior explained solely by underdevelopment of the prefrontal cortex, as the social scientists claim, or could the social skills be addressed by better socialization and enculturation?
Social conditions in adolescence, compared with other stages of life, have unique effects on brain and behavior that can last a lifetime. During adolescence, the brain can be developed to acquire tasks more suited towards that phase of brain development. The parts of the brain that undergo most change during adolescence govern internal control, multi-tasking and planning, self-awareness and social cognitive skills, and the understanding of others.
Traditional model of schooling and obedience prevent such skill development. This system is also not suitable for disagreeable persons, which is why it favors girls who are more agreeable than boys.
The same social scientists that point to the prefrontal cortex as a single factor cause of their newly-coined phase “emerging adulthood’ also either don’t acknowledge the fact that physiological maturation starts earlier than it did in the mid-1800’s or they do acknowledge that and claim that it’s a bad thing, warning of the dangers of “early puberty” or the more pathological-sounding “precocious puberty”, natural phenomena which they blame on obesity or hypothetical overexposure to harmful EDC’s.
Archaeological evidence shows that in modern humans, from 10,000 years BCE to the mid-1800’s, the age of onset of menses rose by roughly 6 years fro age 10 to over age 16, and has since returned closer to where it should be naturally, with good sleep and nutrition.
Menses comes with hormonal maturation and is accompanied by development of neural networks in the brain.
The physical maturation of the brain is beginning closer to where it should be, at earlier ages, closer to where it was in the Paleolithic man. Brain maturation now begins in earlier life years, closer to where it was 10,000 years BCE. This can be attributed to better health and nutrition.
Researchers have observed that maturation extends later into life, into the mid 20’s, a period of continued maturation, not a loss of ability.
Over the past 10,000 years, human brain size also decreased, another phenomena that can be explained by diet.
Yet as brain maturation begins earlier, requisite social skills are not being concordantly exercised and developed. Children are being overprotected and prevented from developing, capturing helplessness and sealing it into the physiological development of the brain.
As physiological onset maturation improved, social and mental development worsened with neglect. Yet this phenomenon of delayed maturation is being attributed to and explained by the hypothesis related to new discoveries of neurological development.
What is the error correction mechanism? Who will be the changers? Overprotected and controlled children? Emerging adults? Where does the overprotection from “harmful ideas” end?
In the last decade, from 2011 to 2021, we have seen a drastic increase in censorship and a loss of privacy. There is an increase in the social need for psychological safety shown on platforms like facebook that protect against speech deemed “offensive”. Rather than moving in the direction of mental toughness, we are overprotecting to create fragility.
Keeping kids in protective bubbles while their brains develop physically does not give them the skills needed for mating and reproduction. Rather, protecting kids from interpersonal activities prevents them from developing the skills needed to thrive as humans — skills they desire to exercise — often against their consent.
A good parent is a good mentor. They observe the strengths, inclinations, aptitudes, interests, and weaknesses of their children to help them develop, apply themselves, and find teachers.