Adult Preschool and The Death of Healthy Shame

by admin on March 20, 2015

in Tyler Businesses

I enjoy writing for this site immensely, but there are times when interesting topics elude me. Of course there are also times when a subject presents itself and virtually forces me to write about it. An article I read this afternoon was one such topic. Evidently adults in Brooklyn, New York are now paying a thousand dollars for a month long class. And the term “class,” stretches credulity because what they are attending is an adult preschool, with all the rights, privileges, and challenges which accompany enrolling in that type on institution.

Daily activities include things like: show and tell, arts and crafts, finger painting, dress up, naps… ok the nap sounds pretty good… at the home that I own… in my own large and comfortable bed… not on a mat lying on the newly dried floor where the guy or gal next to me just wet themselves.

The purpose of the adult preschool is to provide some sort of amateur therapy, and help “students” deal with the stress in their lives. Oh here’s an idea, give in to the nervous breakdown! Evidently, the founder holds too strong to the fallacy that everything I need to know I learned in kindergarten… which is preposterous. I didn’t learn to drive in Kindergarten, I didn’t learn to teach a class, I didn’t learn that command economies will never work long term because they create a false demand for a product without actually generating any new wealth… Sorry. What was I talking about again?

In his classic work Nicomachean Ethics, Aristotle talks about what he calls “incontinence,” which is actually amazingly relevant to this discussion. He says knowledge is directly proportional to shame. So playing with toys is completely acceptable for a child who is still developing and lacks the “continence” or ability to fill his time in a productive way. But if I as an adult were caught unaware finger painting by myself when I should be grading papers, well that would be shameful, or at least it should be.

Ultimately I think the “School” is capitalizing on the innate desire that people have to escape their responsibilities and if being completely incompetent is going to facilitate that, than fair enough. Ultimately, here’s the thing: life is tough. Life is stressful. And there are any number of good, healthy, responsible and adult options for dealing with that stress; things like seeing an actual therapist, visiting with a priest or pastor, or simply being open and honest with one’s spouse. In a crunch, a competent bartender could be helpful. (Just kidding about the last one). All of these are good ways for mature grown-ups to deal with hardship. And the great thing is they won’t bring any shame to you or your family!

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