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by the Webmaster
Anyone above the age of say, 5 or so, who still sucks their thumb, can relate to an "embarrassing moments" dialogue. It's well understood that in any society publicly displayed "babyish" adaptations like thumbsucking continued past some random age are met by all sorts of emotions, most of which are unwelcome by their recipients. Very few times, though, is there thought behind the ridicule, derision, and sometimes even self-righteous displays of anger. Compared to thumbsucking, other forms of far worse, destructive self-soothing are, incredibly, far more socially acceptable.
For instance, it's more acceptable to drink, overeat, smoke (though not as much as it used to be, but despite the restrictions, still more socially acceptable then adult thumbsucking), bite fingernails, pen tips, and eraser heads, addict oneself to the racetrack, and heaven forbid, the computer. You can add an ever widening array of modern day temptations, to this list, but never, NEVER, is it OK to mind your own business and enjoy a thumb, or even two, if your partner is so inclined.
And all I want to know is . . .how did it ever get this way?
It can't be that society has a thing about the evil long term effects of chronic thumbsucking, can it? I mean, the worst that may happen to the select few is a well developed wicked set of bucked teeth, and is that so bad? Personally I like bucked teeth, and, hell, it sure beats lung cancer, ingrained gamblers poverty, or a heart attack from too many twinkies, doesn't it? And besides, sucking your thumb keeps you quiet. Those mockers out there should feel fortunate for us thumbsuckers- at least they don't have to put up with the incessant babbling that usually emanates from our more socially accepted brethren. The thumbsucker enjoys his solace in peace and QUIET. But still, there's that nagging question. If it doesn't make any sense to pick on the hapless thumbsucker, then why do they do it? And curiously, why, in our embarrassment, do we accept our social stigma by.....well....being embarrassed at all?
Perhaps the lone thumbsucker touches a nerve, a very primordial nerve. We are supposed to be inherently social creatures, and the thumbsucker threatens that assumption by finding all the soothing he or she needs by his or her lonesome. It's not merely sucking a thumb that's bad. Perhaps it's the notion of thumbing one's nose at the rest of society, being willing to admit that perhaps the remainder of society isn't as needed, maybe even done without. Surely someone out there remembers a mother imploring our thumbsucking self to go out and "play with your friends" coming just before, "instead of sucking your thumb all day!" Yes, maybe the misunderstanding majority finds that thumbsucking is just too individual a thing, even in the Land Of Individuality, hoping that the socialization process will stop our dreadful predisposition. "You're not going to suck your thumb in school are you? You'll be made fun of !"
It's not fair! Oh, if only the whole world would just try it for a few months! What a difference it would make! Can you seriously even begin to try to imagine wars between thumbsucking opponents. The very idea is absurd. And, talk about child abuse, wife abuse, or drug related crime...I think the world would finally realize that when life's got you down a thumb is a great and natural concept. How often have we seen the start of a fight and its equally abrupt end when one child just sits down and sucks his/her thumb?
So, hell, I got to admit, I've been embarrassed. You know, they catch you in your car, or while sleeping...ho hum. The point is, damn it, I shouldn't be embarrassed in the first place, but I was, and even after all of this consciousness raising, I think I'll still continue to be that way. I'm so, so frustrated! I think it's time for a thumb bye bye.
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