So I have a theory…

…you can take it or leave it, but I’m starting to wonder if there’s something to it, and it’s this:

Anything that we were hung up about when we were 13 or 14 or 15 – our body issues, our social problems, our self-consciousness and fears and anxieties – anything from that 8th and 9th grade range just gets burned into the ROM and we’re stuck with it for the rest of our lives. No matter how brilliant or gorgeous or successful or lighting-our-hundreds-with-hundreds rich we get, at root, we’re still the fat kid, the nerd, the burnout, the reject, the freak, the flake, the basket case. And while all your adult hangups can eventually be cured with enough drugs and therapy and liquor, the stuff that was there originally is damn near impossible to overcome, because it happened when you started being an adult. Whatever you thought you were when the switch flipped, well, you’ve got yourself a duck.*

This dovetails nicely with the old line about how high school IS the real world, it’s just not the whole world…because anybody who thinks the real world isn’t like high school needs to get out in the real world some more.

Anyway, it’s a theory…

* old line about imprint theory: “if a duck hatches from its egg, and you’re the first thing it sees, you got yourself a duck.”

3 Replies to “So I have a theory…”

  1. I would so agree with this theory, although I might even push it earlier, into “middle school”, especially given how much I’ve been thinking about it recently as I’m finding the people I went to middle school with and thinking about how much many of my lingering neuroses, I attribute back to that time.

  2. Shanna and Alix are onto something. I think the age could be different depending on the person. Mine’s probably sometime in either elementary school or junior high, if I had to guess.

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