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Robert Epstein has written two fantastic books on this exact topic, "The Case Against Adolescence" and "Teen 2.0" - the heart of both revolves around the artificial extension of childhood modern society has developed into this period we call "adolescence".

I'm a 90's kid, by the time I was 10 years old I stayed at home by myself and my 18 month younger sister after school and during the summer. We would stop by the store after school, visit friends, take the bus to the pool, etc, we just called our mother at work and left a message so she knew where we were. Hell, I had unfiltered access to the internet - and it's not like online predators were some foreign concept in the early 00's.

I can't say my daughter is going to have completely unmonitored internet access at 10 years old like I did, she's five years old right now and I've got network-wide content filtering deployed to give myself a little safety net in case she stumbles off the beaten path while playing a game or something. I intend to keep this deployed until she's old enough to properly police her own activity, but at a certain point I'll need to trust her to do the right thing and teach instead of restrict. I hope more parents can learn to do the same, and this extends into the physical world as well as the virtual one - we absolutely cannot treat teenagers like children that need to be coddled, they are adults in training and deserve an appropriate level of trust and respect.




Completely agree. Back in the day, children began to be treated as adults around 12-13 as long as they proved themselves responsible enough.

I remember riding my bike 10-20 miles when I was 12-14 before cell phones, visiting distant friends and buying random stuff with my $20 allowance. Running errands for my parents too. By 18 my parents were more like mentors than protectors. Just some people I really liked to look up to and help out when things got real gnarly.

Life stuff happened. Flat tires, sketchy situations, talked to the police a few times. Even broke some bones once in a bike accident. Every time I learned how to deal with life situations and make it home alright. Young enough that strangers and the justice system are still ready to give you some slack cuz you're figuring things out, a gift that many kids these days don't get.

It makes you grow up fast. I was babysitting for multiple days at 14, responsibly as any adult. Starting working real jobs soon after, not disclosing because I don't want to dox myself... But I was doing "real adult" jobs where the consequences for mistakes we're so bad that people could die. My boss got several complaints that it was illegal or irresponsible to let a "child" do such work. It wasn't.




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