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At What Age Do Men Mature? What Science Says

David Wilson
January 29, 2024

When we were children, it seemed like girls were faster growing up. They would be a bit taller than most guys at the age of 10-12. They would be more responsible in the house at the age of 6-7. They would even be more emotionally aware of crushes at the age of 7-8. In general, what everyone is asking is, why does this happen? When do boys mature into men? What does science have to say about all this? 

Biological Factors

It has been a rather altruistic knowledge that girls mature faster than boys. However, some scientists have found the root of this accepted urban legend. Researchers from New Castle University who have worked on research connected with the Human Green Brain project have found some possible reasons for this faster maturity rate in girls.

The experiment that they conducted involved scanning the brains of 121 volunteers from the ages of 4 to 40. The results of these dozens of scans have yielded groundbreaking information about how the brain develops. 

The study is saying that the human brain goes through a period of pruning neural connections that it deems unuseful. As it prunes away these said connections, it makes way for the reorganization of the brain to happen.

This process allows for the most important information to be retained inside the brain.  Suddenly, the term scattered brain does ring a bell on this matter. Men who participated in the experiment experienced the pruning process during their late teens, around 15 to 20 years old, and another 20 years for the reorganization to happen.

It is different for the girls, though, because their brains prune out unimportant information and reorganize neural connections as early as when they are 10 years old. 

That is a huge gap if you ask anyone. This is now the reason why most people believe that girls mature faster than boys. 

At what age do men mature fully?

Now that studies have proven scientifically that women’s brains do mature faster than men's, the next question that needs to be answered is when do men mature? At what age do they and their brains fully mature? 

Based on the same study mentioned earlier, men do go into the pruning stage until their 15th or 20th birthday. That’s just the period where the brain prunes all unnecessary information and connections inside the brain, and their brains do not go into reorganization for another 20 years.

Now, if you do the math, men will probably reach full mental maturity by the time they are in their 40s. 

An informal study made by Nickelodeon UK for their new sitcom surveyed men and women and found that eight out of ten women surveyed agreed with the released results. Their findings showed that, on average, men mature at the age of 42 versus women, who mature at the age of 32 on average.

This informal study was done as part of the campaign to launch the new sitcom of Nickelodeon UK that features how a man who may be a bit immature for his age and a young boy who is much too wiser for his age interact and live together. 

You might be shaking your head if you are one of these men mentioned, but facts backed up by evidence are kind of hard to ignore. 

What are the signs of immaturity in men?

Okay so maybe you are still scratching your heads and thinking that you are not one of those immature men or your man is one, surely there must be signs. Well, there are a few actions, mannerisms, and nuances that point to a man’s supposed immaturity. Here are some of those signs as indicated by some women who were part of the Nickelodeon UK informal study. 

  • Men find the sound and smell of their or other people’s farts and burps hilarious.
  • Craving, buying, and eating any kind of fast food in the dead of night.
  • The all-time deal breaker in relationships is playing and giving more to video games than their girlfriends or wives. 
  • The endless playing of pranks and practical jokes. This one is a sure sign of immaturity
  • Competing with children half their age for some petty games.
  • Telling the same old jokes a hundred times and still finding it funny.
  • Ogling cars, racing their cars with other people during a stop light or the motorway, and playing loud music in their cars.
  • They are incapacitated to take care of themselves and need to be mothered or, worse, rely on their mothers for household chores and especially cooking.
  • I am into watching, buying merchandise, and playing dress-up or cosplay with cartoons and even anime. Of course, no real mature man still plays with his toys and collects them, right?
  • Boasting about how all the women ‘like them.’ This says a lot since most childish men will brag about women like they are toys; they brag to their playmates back in the day. 
  • Showing off at the gym.
  • This sounds silly but women also find men who do not eat their vegetables as immature. It might be because this hatred for vegetables goes back to when they were kids and some men have not outgrown their childish ways. 
  • Not wanting to have deep conversations and finding them boring. Women think that men who do not want to talk about the ‘deep’ stuff and only want the fun in a relationship are immature and childish in a way.
  • Not dressing appropriately like wearing baggy clothes everywhere and even on formal occasions not for fashion but for the sake of being comfortable. 

Conclusion

These are just a few of the things that women find as signs of immaturity in the men that they have had relationships with. Of course, the same does not apply to all; it can be on a case-to-case basis. Not all men are immature like how not all women are mature as well. There will always be exceptions to the rule. 

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David Wilson

David Wilson is a skilled clinical psychologist dedicated to enhancing lives through healing and growth. Specializing in empowering clients to overcome challenges, he offers personalized therapy that fosters emotional well-being and resilience. With a compassionate approach, David guides individuals on their journey to discover self-awareness, develop coping strategies, and find lasting happiness. Trusted and revered, he is committed to making a positive impact and nurturing positive change in every life he touches.

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