The Meaning of 'Mature Adult'

and a category of 'Immature Adult'

A solution to the problems of classifying TV/films/video and of goals for youth


A solution to many problems at once would be to define Mature Adult. The present classification of 'Mature Adult' would then be relabelled as Immature Adult.

Children and adolescents would then have an idea of the choices they can have as adults - to be mature or remain immature.

Adults would have to recognise when they are being adult and when they are regressing to immature play level, in the service of the ego as the psychiatric jargon has it, or not, as the case may be.


Mature Adults


Immature Adults think that because they are older and larger they should have every childish thing they want, like 9-year-olds, and to hell with what it might do to anyone vulnerable. Entertainment that caters to their tastes should be classified as for Immature Adults, not for Mature Adults.

The present meaning that young people see is given to 'Mature Adult' is dangerously misleading. The concept of 'Adulthood' as 'Whatever children should not do.' Many suicidal young people have come to a dead end in childhood without a transition to becoming adults who can face the challenges of the world. Australian young people are handicapped by having no real idea of how to grow up and become truly adult. They often remain immature well beyond physical adulthood.

Social Age

Everyone should have an idea of the concept of Social Age - of what behaviour is attributable to people as they grow up and become wiser and more competent. Knowledge of norms and social expectations governs much of people's behavior. 'Everybody does it.' This is one reason why marital breakdown and suicide are both infectious - copycat is a strong motive.

Many societies have had rites of passage and other ways to help and to signify that young people have become grown up. We are singularly muddled in our messages for our youth, and could do much to clear up the transition.

Entertainment Category for 'Teenagers aged 15-19 only'

It may even turn out to be a good idea to relabel all 'for Mature Audiences Only' entertainment as for 'Teenagers aged 15-19 only'. Then adults still requiring coarse language, explicit violence, voyeuristic sex and sadism and the thrill of being disgusted would not be able to flatter themselves they are being macho. They are watching stuff for kids.

Kids watching 'For Teenagers aged 15-19 only' would be aware that this was something they were having as a stage (like kiddie's comics and teddy bears and balloons when they were little.) It was not Grown Up, but more like Judge Dredd comics and scribbling on walls. They could take it - and leave it. It could be a stage, like pimples.

Misleading Labelling under the Trade Practices Act

A Case for Reclassification of Categories of 'Mature Adult' and 'Parental Guidance Requested'

Any good lawyer should be able to claim successfully that the entertainment classifications of 'Mature Adult' and 'Parental Guidance Requested' are legally invalid. 'Mature Adult' is applied misleadingly, and the 'Parental Guidance Requested' is impossible to comply with unless drastic steps are taken.

Ask yourselves, your legislators, your media producers, your TV Channels - all of you - to put out advice on how Parental Guidance can be supplied to any or all of the programs and videos that children currently watch from daybreak to midnight.

Parental Guidance for the Simpsons?

For Independence Day?

For the News?

For De Grassi High?


Programs showing parents supplying Parental Guidance would hit the comedy spots of the year. Full Frontal could have a ball.