Thursday, April 27, 2006

We may unknowingly be letting our kids harm themselves

"The excess of our youth are checks written against our age and they are payable with interest thirty years later."
- Charles Caleb Colton

This quote sounds like some sort of religious proselytizing, but it's really a very practical lesson that can be applied to everyone.

Our bodies are designed to withstand a huge amount of abuse. As young adults, we can withstand near-starvation for amazing periods of time, long periods in the sun, sleep depirvation, smoking, excesses of food or drink and much more.

Our early evolution as homo sapiens gave us that. However, we are past that stage and are now in developed societies where a majority of adults live much longer than 30 to 35 years.

Many people now live to 80 or even more than 100 years. While our bodies can stay alive that long, excesses in our youth may well play a major role in how healthy we are in our retirement years.

It's one thing to live fast, love hard and die young, as an ancient country music song said. It's quite another thing to live 100 years, the last 40 of which are in constant pain, with a severe disability or with mental impairment as results of the "good times" we had as young adults.

Like other life lessons, this one must be taught to children before they get old enough to have their "good times' excesses cause them decades of grief and pain in their senior years.

A study of former Olympic athletes at age 45 or above would produce shocking results, as a majority of them (almost all) live in pain, most of it from arthritis. Even what we call good efforts (such as exercise geared toward Olympic participation) can be an excess for which we pay a high price in health damage as we get older.

Do you want to have your children live for decades in pain or as invalids or with mental disabilities in their later years because you encouraged them or allowed them to participate in activities over which you had some influence in their youth?

Teach the children. Teach them before they need to use the lessons. When it comes to emotional or psychological lessons, there is no such things as "to young to learn." Kids learn. It's what they do best. Don't keep them ignorant about anything.

Teach right, teach good, teach peace. It's what we call the Philosophy of T3.

Bill Allin
'Turning It Around: Causes and Cures for Today's Epidemic Social Problems,' striving to teach everyone life lessons before they do things that will destroy their own.
Learn more at

No comments: