Some people might raise their eyebrows at the latest “shocking news” on the internet: A Japanese man from Kyoto who was born in 1984 identifies as a 28-year-old to escape the painful reality.
Well, I’ll save you the mental calculation and tell you that his real age, as of this writing, is 39. This may seem incongruous and absurd at face value, but is easily explained by understanding what trans-age is. The said term was defined by a Trans-age website as “a person [whose] age identity is different from their chronological age. People who are experiencing this phenomenon can be at any age and are not all younger than their [chronological] age.”
Although the term leads to confusion, the sentiments of some people wanting to keep enjoying their youth should resonate with just about anyone.
But how did this happen? According to an interview with Jackie in a local news outlet, a work incident occurred in which he was reprimanded by his former boss. The boss was surprised that he didn’t know what to do with a task at his age. This unfortunate event caused immense stress for him, leading him to reconsider his life and attempt to live as a 28-year-old. For him, it’s ‘an age where he can balance maturity with youthfulness.
A psychologist and professor at Kanagawa University, Dr. Takashi Sugiyama, added in the said interview:
“There are people in their forties who feel like their mental state and how they perceive the world at large is more of a 15-year-old’s. Surprisingly, there are many people like that.”
Society has always had a heavy focus on fitting in and acting one’s age, so it’s perhaps not so surprising that some people get pushed to this point, while not actually ready to fit into those molds.
This man, however, is not able to fully escape his biological age, as he noted, “It feels like I am going against what I truly feel, but I conform because that is what’s legally required,” referring to official paperwork and forms, where he must enter his biological age.
Maybe, letting people live their lives as they wish, without hurting anyone, shouldn’t be so frowned upon. But then, we should be aware that trans-age shouldn’t be used as an excuse to abuse youths in any form.
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