The Persistence of Adolescence: Who we are and how we got here: American girls, women, females

The riddle of arrival.

Who are we now, at anytime, and why?

There are those that would argue the why is unnecessary. We are here and from here we go on to the next moment, the next “here”.

Where did I read recently that it is acceptable to use the term “woman” in the news, in scholarly articles, in politics, but often, it is not accepatable to use “female”?  Now I have no statistics to know the average of occurrence, haven’t thought about that a lot in detail, but found the observation thought provoking.

Who are today’s “girls”? Who were yesterday’s girls?

There is no division, today’s girls will become yesterday’s girls and tomorrow’s women. We can talk of being in the moment, but moments shift, and our role in those moments shifts also. It can be seismic movement, but happens to the unattendant observer, including the observer of self, in such a seemingly slow manner, that it is suprising to find yourself or a loved one or a neighbor as this different “person”.

There is much discussion on what girls must deal with and learn, the vulnerability to “strangers”. Yet, we place them approvingly in environments day after day that don’t always teach them to be strong, but teaches them to adapt, to deal, to quiet their passions. I’m not saying this doesn’t happen with boys, but for a variety of reasons, that would be a separate topic. (And for a variety of reasons, it can be easily argued that it should be within the same topic).

I posted earlier that I recently picked up a book, Reviving Ophelia, Saving the Selves of Adolsecent Girls, by Mary Pipher, Ph. D.

Earlier this evening I wrote:

I am on page 28, and the book has resonated at this point.

In reading this book, I hope to understand the next generations of decision-makers. The book suprises me though, it may yet teach me how I got to where I am, in the exploration of adolescence.

There is no them and us, parents v. children, save v. the unsaved, Christian v. Muslim, Israeli v. Pakistinian…….there are “us”, the collective of human beings, the “earthlings”, whatever divisions we have made from there, we have made, the tribulations it has led us through are of our own making.

With life and committments intervening, there has now been a few quiet moments and I am at page 49. How much I have learned and thought of in that space of 21 pages. I am a fast reader, there is nothing I love more than ripping through books. I must read this book slowly as it not only highlights what is going on with the girls of the 1990s, the girls of today, but the woman of today who were girls yesterday.

I want to write a disclaimer, hey wait, I’m only on page 49! I can’t guarantee this book is worth the read. But you know what? That’s ludicrous. The book was worth the read at the word go.

I’m sure I’ll have more to say on this subject as the pages go on; however, for the moment, there is one singular thought:

What are we doing?

Go to, run to, race to, click to:

Official website of Mary Pipher, Ph.D.: check out excerpt on “Reviving Ophelia, Saving the Selves of Adolescent Girls”.


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