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Five Ways Drunk People and Kindergarteners Are the Same

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One of the most obvious lessons I’ve learned from my ongoing college experience is that people my age don’t know how to talk to kids, which is surprising considering how much experience we have talking to drunk people. Conveniently for us, drunk people share a lot of the same needs and interests as the typical five-year-old. So, to help save my peers from more of the same patronizing questions and awkward silences I’ve caused, I’ve highlighted some of the similarities between the familiar drunk student and the terrifying five-year-old.

  1. They need someone to look out for them

People whose brains aren’t fully developed or are hindered to the same effect are at a higher risk for a number of dangerous occurrences. Being young or being drunk both signify a lack of thinking capacity and therefore decision-making capability. Whether you’re at your best-friend’s graduation party or babysitting your nephew, be sure to keep a close eye on your at-risk company and hide any sharp objects.

2. They want you to think they’re cool

Have you ever shown up late to a party where everyone’s already hammered, and when you walk into the room everyone starts yelling? This seems to happen to me all the time, but I don’t think it’s about being excited to see me as much as it’s about being excited for someone to see them. Drunk people want to show off all the fun they’re having to an outside perspective. You can see a similar behavior in children all the time; it’s a common human behavior that appears more prevalent in children and drunk people because they lack the discretion and subtlety with which most people act to get attention. Moral of the story: if you want a five-year-old to like you, throw your arms in the air and scream their name when they walk into the room.

3. It’s important not to stress them out

High amounts of stress can severely damper a partygoer’s fun and cause them to have a negative experience. Similarly, studies have shown that high amounts of stress can be detrimental to the cognitive and neuronal development of young children. So, the next time you’re conversing with a kindergartener, treat it like that time when Brandon fractured his ankle trying to do a kickflip off of his car, and make sure everyone keeps their cool.

4. Make sure they have plenty of opportunities to play and stay active

We all know drunk people have an excess of energy to spend on goofing around, but what you may not have known was that kids share a similar affinity for playing. Both categories of intellectually-limited people benefit from environments that encourage physical activity and imaginative play. For example, drunk people like to go to parties, children like to go to the park, and both really like to go to the local McDonald’s PlayPlace.

5. They need to talk about their feelings

Drunk people love to share their deepest thoughts and feelings with anyone who will listen. It’s true, but it’s not just because they’re drunk; it’s because they feel comfortable sharing. Much like how a five-year-old feels comfortable telling you that her Grandpa died last week but it’s okay because she’s getting a hamster. People whose minds are affected by alcohol or age have less shame about their emotions, and less shame seeking reassurance through other people. If you find yourself stuck in a dead end conversation with a child, take a lesson from drunk people and ask them about their feelings.

By Josie Cloughessy, Activist writer

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