BEHAVIOR AND EXPECTATIONS THAT PREVAIL AMONG VARIOUS AGE GROUPS
Customs and traditions vary all over the world as vary the kind of people who live in it. But certain practices are common for all peoples. For example, we all go to school at our early stages, and after completing school move to the nearest city to find a job, hire a room, marry, and so on and so forth.
Today’s post is an elaboration of the previous one on the various age groups of people. Today’s post focuses on the behavior patterns among the various age groups and what their expectations in life are, though I must say they are not really exhaustive.
When you start reading this you will think you already know it and so there is no reason why somebody should write it down for you to read again. Okay, if you know yesterday what about tomorrow? Do not get disgusted; somebody else needs to know, just like you. Let’s get straight to the point.
From birth up to 2 years you’re called a baby.
All you do is suck your mother’s breast milk and sleep. You sleep a lot and you cry a lot too. You cry a lot because that is your language to your mother. You are afraid of certain faces which appear strange and sometimes horrible and don’t want to be near those horrible faces. You expect your mother to be always near you to give you the protection you need.
From 2 to 12 years you are a child.
In your early stages as a child you cry very often and at the least provocation. You also play a lot and can mix freely with other children. You have nothing to care about. At this stage your innate abilities begin to show up. Your character is molded and influenced by your surroundings. Your interests may be visible through your interactions with your peers. Your memory is sharp and can absorb many things. You begin to attend school and can learn many things. You expect much to be cared for and it’s natural to crave for such care and attention.
From 13 to 19 years you are a teenager.
This is a period of great change, a revolutionary period in your life. Here are some of the things that you will go through during this stage in your life:
- You try to wean yourself from your parents
- You want more freedom
- You tend to be rebellious at home and at school
- You are attracted to friends more than parents
- You feel more free among friends and want to gain popularity among them
- You become aware of your sexuality and try to make use of it
- You may pick a good or bad habit depending on your circle of friends and what they do in their spare moments
- You have the tendency to believe that you are smarter or cleverer than everybody at home.
- You have a delayed body clock which makes you prone to stay up late in the night and sleep later in the morning
If you rebel against authority, whilst it may be seen as a bad sign, it is an age appropriate behavior.
Teenagers expect to be cared for because they may be in school or are not yet matured as adults. They also expect authorities to relax stiffer penalties for indiscipline, but this differs from one region of the world to another. In the USA for example the cane is not used as a disciplinary tool whilst in Ghana for example it may be used where necessary, though caning has been banned in schools.
They also expect much freedom and not to be controlled too much like it was when they were children. If control is forced on them there may be a rebellion of some sort.
If you fall between 20 to 39 years you are in this group, the young adults, strong, virile with high testosterone levels.
Real life begins on your own from here. By 20 you have completed ‘school going’ even up to university level and have been newly employed or still searching for a job. [If still searching for a job, wait. In my next 2 blogs I am coming up with some options for getting employed. It may help you.]
Life is how you make it. You have to work to earn a living as Paul commanded the Thessalonians at 2Thes 3:10.
When you have a regular job, you begin to desire some basic necessities of life and other worldly things such as:
dresses and shoes,
expensive mobile phones
expensive jewellery and make ups, etc.
a house and a car and everything you can have under the sun.
Then also you try to look your best, especially to attract the opposite sex and draw attention to yourself. This is the period to start many things including serious dating, marriage and bearing of children. If at 39 you are still single then there must be something wrong which needs checking, or it could be a matter of choice rather than of fate.
Depending upon your educational qualifications and skills you try to get the best possible job to get the maximum comfort life can offer you at this stage. You seek for opportunities to travel abroad, fascinated by cities like New York, London, Paris, Hamburg, Tokyo and the like for greener pastures. But the reality in life is that you do not have to live in a foreign land before you can succeed in life. Small achievements, wherever you are, pave way for bigger achievements. It is now and you are here. Instead of wishing in vain that you were somewhere else, give positive and loving energy to where you are.
That is 40 to 59 years [The adult man/woman]
When you enter this group you work even harder to achieve all your dreams which eluded you in your previous stage. You still have time to buy a car, build a house or set up your business and if at the end of this stage you still fail to achieve your dreams, you have a slimmer chance of achieving them when you enter the next stage or group.
It is said that life begins at 40. Well, if you were able to fulfill your dreams before you turned 40 then you would have set up proper foundation for the enjoyment of life. That is having a good business, a helpful spouse, a car and a house. If you are able to achieve these you gain respect in society, but then a lot of responsibilities fall on you, especially if you are kind hearted and live in the southern part of West Africa where we have extended family systems. You become the eye of the extended family and members may expect occasional cash donations from you. More so if you are able to travel and work abroad they expect you to be a millionaire at all costs and when you return, you should start sprinkling money on them like you are mad.
When you are aged between 60 to 69 years you belong to the older adults group.
This is another major turning point in your life cycle. Your strength begins to sap away and you feel the vigor within you fading away gradually. You go on retirement and begin a new stage in your life. [ I shall blog later about life at retirement; planning it and living it.]
In fact at this stage in life you begin to enjoy the fruits of your labor if you labored well. You cannot do the hard work you used to do when you were younger, though you may still be working or managing your own business. You must be living in your own house now and as much as possible try to live a stress-free life.
At this stage you must have grown spiritually stronger and so become more religious.
You continue to have more grandchildren and begin to train those who live with you. You also become a general advisor to the youth and a disciplinarian.
Your sleep pattern changes. You go to bed early and can wake up as early as 2am and never sleep again till morning.
Your main expectation is to be able to complete any unfinished project you started.
Group 6 are the sixties and so group 7 are the seventies, also known as septuagenarians.
This group is the older version of Group 6. What applies in 6 also applies here.
Those who run their own business must be preparing to hand over to their next of kin to continue the business or the business dies with the owner.
You are still getting more grandchildren, and great grandchildren begin to appear to multiply your descendants.
The graph of life has already passed its maximum point and now slumping downwards.
I have combined 80 to 99 year olds into one group and I shall call you octogenarians plus.
Ah! So soon time has gone. Time flies. Life is too short after all. Death can strike anybody at any age, that much we all know but when you are in this group your greatest expectation is death, especially if you have been troubled by sickness.
You have lived your life fully and must have been satisfied for God’s grace upon you. You begin to withdraw from social life and may not be seen in public often.
People in this group may not be physically strong but their lives at this stage are a blessing to families.
Since you may be physically weak you will need the support of your family members for your survival. You have to be cared for like a child. You can’t eat much food and may sometimes forget that you have already eaten your breakfast. In fact you easily forget things.
Of course, not all of you may be physically weak. There are few strong men in this group who can walk over a mile without tiring much.
Still living? God has blessed you, but you must be too weak in flesh by now.
Life has no meaning for you now. With all the knowledge and experience you accumulated over the years, you have nothing to do with them now, and have nowhere to go too.
Now your understanding of life is quite different. You see things in a different perspective. There are certain things you wish you did not do whilst young.
You have nothing waiting for except death. Death must come after all. It is a necessary end to life.
This is the feeling and expectation of the centenarian.
See you next week.