theatlantic

Children have no real sense of how life can flip. School perpetrates an illusion of stasis. If you are 15, and mostly hating the social world of your high school, it is incredibly easily to conclude that your life will always be that way. Childhood is so closed-off and institutionalized. It is a prison. Self-esteem, in the main, comes from three places—school, sports, and the opposite sex. If you fail at those things you are likely to have a harder time. Worse, it’s easy to conclude that this is your life, that whatever you’re experiencing is somehow a sign-posts for the rest of years. If that is the case, why not end it?

The tragedy is that childhood—and specifically young adulthood—is such a slender, ridiculously small sliver, of the human lifespan. It’s sad to think of people who only get to see that.

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