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Writer's Block

Young and Old

If you could do so, how would you spend the day with a younger version of yourself -- where would you go and what would you do? Now that you're older and wiser, what advice would you give that younger you?

Answers (60)

  • I've often thought about what I would say if I could meet my 10- or 11-year-old self. That age was right in the middle of the worst years of my life, which affected me for many years after they ended. I would love to tell to her that the verbal and emotional torture will end. High school will be so much better. Those were tough years but they did end. I was so insecure back then and I want to tell her that it doesn't matter what any of those people think. I should do what I want and think is right. I have found later in life that it's better not to worry about what anyone thinks about me. I just have to do it how I want. Make me much happier.
  • More Olympic lifting, more foreign language classes, and learn more about computer.
  • If I could, I'd go back to see me at age 17 and try to persuade me to not take up the ciggies! I'd also warn him that the world is not as nice as all that; that you have to realise that you can't forever be invincible.

    We would walk endlessly through the countryside together and talk about the future of the Internet.

  • I guess that all depends upon how far back I ended up, and the age of the earlier self that I encountered. Age 8: "No one has the right to touch your private parts, or make you touch theirs. Age 10: "The best way to stop the monster from hurting your younger brothers, or anyone else, is to tell your mom and dad what he has been doing to you. Allowing him to do those horrible things to your body, and making you do them to him, will not protect them or keep anyone from getting into trouble... except for him. He is lying to you so that you will fear him, and so that he can hurt and abuse you again." Age 12: "What he is doing to you is called rape. It is abuse, and it is wrong. The only way to stop him is to tell an adult. Your parents, your pastor, a teacher, anyone. And you aren't protecting your brothers by remaining silent. He has already hurt too many other young boys, and he won't stop before he hurts one of them too." Age 13: "Don't shave the first inch of hair off of your front hairline. It's going to be a lot harder to cover up and hide than you realize. Think of your 8th grade school photos. Sure, it's an intriguing feeling, but you will have plenty of opportunities in the future to shave your head... and after the 80's and early 90's are past it won't be something that will exactly be considered weird or odd anymore. If you really still want to do it, take the razor and shave off the sides. At least you can claim to be going punk... and that will actually be really cool about 6 to 9 months from now." "Go ahead and buy the weird looking "parachute pants" and the belts that go with them. They are going to be the "in fashion" thing in a few months, and then the cost is going to triple; and you'll end up begging your parents to buy just a couple pair instead of being able to afford all of the cool colors now." "The next time that the girls from private school call and ask if you want to go to the mall, play hard to get on purpose. When they try to bribe you to go by offering to give you a blow job, take them up on the offer. It has nothing to do with your current bad haircut, they are offering to suck your dick. It's actually enjoyable when a girl your own age does it." Age 15: "Having sex with every girl you can get close enough to will not take away the hurt, pain, and confusion that he has caused in your life. It will only distort your views of how wonderful and pure a real relationship can be with a woman later in your life." "The images and perceptions that you have learned from porn are not realistic. Women are not like that in real life. Yes, sex can be that exciting, wonderful, and passionate... but wait for the right time, and the right person, to share it with. And then enjoy it together, without staging it like a movie script." "If you can't keep it in your pants, wear a condom. If you get a girl pregnant it complicates things a great deal more. Spend a little more time learning about women's menstrual cycles and you'll not have to worry so much about the whole baby thing." "Don't lock yourself in your room all of the time. Your parents are worried about you, and think you're doing drugs. And for crying out loud, don't play with it until it hurts. I know it feels good, but you can't masturbate your entire life away just to make the depression go away." Age 16: "Your youth group leader is a bitch, and a complete stuck up moron. She's right that you are a "dreamer," but not in the way that she described it to you. You dream of bigger and better things than she can ever comprehend. Don't give up on those dreams." Age 17/18: "If you want long hair, grow it long. Despite what your parent's gripe about, there is nothing wrong with having long hair, and being a good person is not about trying to look the way other people want you to look. But don't just grow the back out long. The mullet is not as cool of a look as people seem to make it out to be right now. You'll look back on it years later and regret it." Age 19: "Stay in school. It seems like a lot of work now, but it will pay off later. Don't go for what you think is an easier degree program, study what you are really interested in, or go to trade school." "Forget stereotypes. Go to cosmetology school, and then get your business degree. It's your life, and you've got a long time to live it the way that will make you happy." "Don't join the military just to get away from your current life situations. If you do decide to enlist, finish at least one more year of college first, and be picky about the MOS they try to put you into. They want you bad enough that you can walk away and come back later. They'll sweeten the deal. Get it in writing." "Your childhood molester has been abusing your baby brother. Let's go castrate and torture him until he begs for death." Age 21: "Don't have sex with her and take her virginity. She's sweet, pretty, and cute now; but it will cause you to make life choices and decisions that will not end well. She's got more issues that you can handle at this point in your life. She sees you as her ticket out from under her parent's overbearing control." "Yes, she will wear leather, latex, and vinyl for you. Yes she wants to shave your head bald, and she will eventually eagerly shave her own head bald for you in return... but the fact is that there are also dozens of other women out there that will gladly do the same things later on in your life if you will be patient enough to wait to meet them. She's not your only shot at this fantasy of yours." "Forget about sex, parties, and getting drunk for now. If you can buckle down and focus on school for just another two years, you'll be making thousands of dollars more per year and meeting better friends and girlfriends in just a few years."
    I would be very hesitant to interact with my younger self beyond the age of 21 for fear that I might say or do could negatively alter my current timeline in a manner that would jeopardize being married to Karen and having my two precious children. As far as influence or alterations to more recent life events, since the children were born, I think I've already addressed those issues in journal entries I have written earlier this year. I would advise myself to take time to appreciate the things you have in life. Appreciate and respect people for the things that they freely give to you, or do for you in life. If someone does something special for you, don't feel the need to push or coerce them into doing more. Showing genuine appreciation and love is more likely to result in realizing your desires and shared happiness together much more than prodding, coercing, or guilting someone into giving into your way. Pouting and throwing emotional tantrums does not solve a situation, it only drives a wedge between you and creates a rift that may never be repaired.
  • I am quite firm about this. November 1963, I would not spend the day with myself so to speak. I would go to my Mom and give her additional help in watching my 4 year old self and my 2 year old brother. He would not have run into traffic. I would not need to give my younger self any advice, I would have given her a life I never had.
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