Our society has lots of people in it, and more and more I realize how many older men I interact with just have old bodies. Their inside self never seemed to move beyond their teenage years. I've been editing a book written by a disabled man in his fifties this week. One of the things he proudly speaks about in his book regards an activity I'd call a temper tantrum (he thinks he's making other people...namely minimum wage workers...aware that stores need to accommodate disabled people).

First, a little background: the guy's in a wheelchair. If he goes to a store to shop, and the racks are too close together for his chair to comfortably navigate the aisle, he rips all of the clothes down going through the aisle (on purpose) until a store clerk calls him on it. Then he professes ignorance and says, "It must have been my chair. I'm sooo sorry." But it's an empty apology. He was throwing a tantrum because he didn't get what he wanted.

Other grown men I know are not in equal marriages. They say things like, "I need to be home by this and this time, or I'll get in trouble." I want to say, "Oh will you get a spanking? You naughty fify-two year old, shame on you." I know what they mean. A better response would be, "I told my wife I'd be home at a certain time. If I'm not home at that time, it's disrespectful. I respect my partner, so I'm going to leave." See how the blame shifts from the wife to themselves? I'd much rather hear that, but I don't.

When I told my friend, Meg, about these observations she wasn't surprised. She has a lot of experience with men, and she says that a lot of them get married thinking that their wife will be a replacement for their mother. She says it's gross and disgusting. I wish I could have put up an argument to counter her point. But seeing what I've been observing around here in Utah, I think Meg is 100% on the mark. But I don't understand why. Why are so many grown men wanting to act like infants?

It makes me wonder, are some of the mass shootings happening in our country a result of men throwing a temper tantrum? What the hell? Are we now awash in millions of men who are essentially fat unkempt children at the age of 45? I can't help but think that this is at least one factor that is unraveling the threads of what holds us all together. How can we even be on the same page of anything if what we're dealing with are minds that never left the teen years. Have you ever seen a class of screaming children? Multiply that by 150 million and give them all the ability to vote and you just might see the crazy that we're seeing today.

I know I'm an adult. I feel like an adult. I approach things like an adult. And I just want to say...I'm really disappointed with how my adulthood turned out so far. I thought I'd see a lot more parallels with myself to others who are my own age. The world has a lot of problems, folks, and they are adult-sized problems and not kid-sized ones. At first glance, we'd have the numbers to tackle these problems. But half of these adults are children, so they can't face them. It's mind-boggling. I live in a society that is populated by Peter Pans. I find myself (too often) wondering why so many men never escaped Neverland and chose to remain there forever. 

Post a Comment