Child’s Mentality in Adults (A Comprehensive Guide)

In this article, we will explore why adults have a child’s Mentality and the strategies to deal with them.

Why do adults have a child’s Mentality?

Adults have a child’s mentality due to various possibilities. Some of them are:

  • Personality

An incorrect interpretation of fact is part of the concept of a personality disorder. The consequence is always frustration when this warped view is exposed. There are nine distinct personality disorders, but those with narcissistic, paranoid, dependent, borderline, obsessive-compulsive, and anti-social personalities are by far the most prime targets for this form of conduct.

  • Addiction

To continue to misuse their drug of choice, abusers require justification. To rationalize their addiction, their cycle of bursting and then consuming a drug to self-soothe ensures they need a steady supply of disturbing events. Often, the first proof of a secret addiction is their unreasonable anger.

  • Diversion

An individual can subconsciously create a diversion technique to prevent access to another subject. The issue is that it is essential to make the diversion so dramatic that others lose their attention. Thus, out of necessity, intense rage is born.

  • Regression

Defensive mechanisms step in as a form of self-preservation when things get too hard, and a person feels helpless. Regression is a transition to childish actions as a way of avoiding adult-like reality and responsibility.

  • Attention

 An adult who feels robbed of attention can act out improperly, just like a toddler. If the attention they receive is positive or negative, some grown-ups don’t worry about it; they just want to get to the frontline by challenging the viewer through a hissy fit.

  • Manipulation

If, by acting out, individual gains in some way, they will continue acting out. It is an immediate action with causal relationships. To change this, avoid giving the person what they want, and they will inevitably find another way to get it.

Is it Peter Pan Syndrome?

The ‘Peter Pan Syndrome’ affects individuals who do not want to or feel difficult to start growing up, individuals who have an adult’s body but a child’s mentality. They don’t know how to avoid becoming children and, or choose not to, consider being mothers or fathers.

Given that the World Health Organization has not accepted it as a psychiatric condition, the disease is not currently considered psychopathology. In Western culture, however, an increasingly more significant number of adults display emotionally immature behaviors. They are resistant to grow up and take on adult responsibilities, and they also dress up and enjoy themselves as children even if they are over 30 years of age.

Both sexes may be affected by Peter Pan Syndrome, but it occurs more frequently in men. 

Another trait of the ‘Peter Pan Syndrome’ sufferers is that they are continually shifting partners and searching for younger ones. Whenever the partnership begins to press for a high degree of loyalty and accountability, they become frightened and break it up. Partnerships with younger females benefit from being able to live without concerns by the day, and they often need fewer plans for the future, so fewer obligations.

Signs of a childish adult

  • Emotional escalations

Young kids sometimes scream, get angry, or look whiny and sulking externally. Adults rarely do.

  • Blaming

Young children try to blame others when things go wrong—Adults attempt to solve the problem.

  • Lies

Young kids might lie to stay out of trouble when there’s an unpleasant scenario. Adults deal with facts, speaking the truth confidently.

  • Name-calling

Children call names to each other. Adults strive to consider problems. Adults do not commit assaults on the personal characteristics of individuals. They strike the issue instead. With mean names, they do not disrespect anyone.

  • Impulsivity

When they feel humiliated or angry, children act out impulsively. Without taking a moment to think about the possible consequences, they talk carelessly or take impetuous action. Similarly, they impulsively disrupt them instead of listening to the opinions of others. Adults hesitate to spit out hurtful words or acts, suppressing the urge. They’re calming themselves. Then, searching for more details and evaluating options, they think about the issue.

  • The need to be the center of focus

A significantly tall kid than other kids his age will walk to another kid who plays with a toy he wants and just takes it. Unless the bully turns on them with aggression, the other child can say nothing. It’s smarter, in many situations, to only let a bully get what he wants. On the other side, adults value limits: Yours is yours and mine is mine.

  • Fledgling narcissism

If kids or adults could get anything they want since they are larger, more challenging, or wealthier, they are at risk of discovering that they are not subject to the rules. They get anything they want. Initially, this narcissistic propensity can look like power. But it represents a significant flaw in reality: being unable to look past oneself.

Mentally healthy people listen to others, hoping to understand others’ emotions, fears, and desires. As a consequence, narcissists listen only to themselves and are emotionally fragile. While dinner is on the table, they act like kids wanting to hang out and play. In short, their attitude is, “It’s all about me.” Nobody else matters in the eyes of a narcissist; if they don’t get their way to do so, they can contribute to sulking or harassment.

  • Immature defenses

The term defense mechanisms were invented by Freud for ways in which people defend themselves and get what they want. Adults utilize defensive strategies such as listening both to the issues of others and their own. They then indulge in problem-solving collaboration. Such reactions to obstacles indicate psychological maturity. Children appear to consider a great defense as a potent offense.

  • Inability to see, identify, and benefit from their errors.

When emotionally mature people “lose their temper” and show frustration improperly, they soon after, with their “analyzing ego,” understand that their behavior was insensitive.  In retrospect, they can see that their conduct was out of line with their belief system. They will see if, as therapists claim, their outburst was ego-dystonic (against their belief system).

Strategies to help them

Loving kids who behave like kids is simple. It’s challenging to love someone who, in an adult’s body, behaves like a child. However, most child-like adults-only act immaturely when they feel threatened. Therefore, if you love someone with a childish side, one solution is to concentrate solely on the person’s more mature and desirable features.

Another strategy is to stop being taken aback by the emergence of childish patterns. It means that you have not yet accepted the reality of child-like behavior. A first and vital step towards change is to take action.

If you are the recipient of childish actions, be careful not to alter the other person. Instead, try to figure out what you can do better so those patterns can no longer have issues with you.Your task is to continue to develop yourself, not to alter others.

Finally, discover the talents of mature adults. Most of what adult children do can be viewed as a deficiency in skills.

And if you behave as an adult in general, the more you are consistent about what defines adult conduct, you’ll be able to remain an adult, even if you communicate with someone who behaves like a kid.


In this article, we explored why adults had a child’s Mentality and the strategies to deal with them.

FAQ: Child’s Mentality in Adults

What causes childlike behavior in adults?

Age regression might be the consequence of a medical condition. For instance, to cope with anxiety or fear, some people facing extreme stress or discomfort may regress to childlike actions. Some concerns with mental health make age regression more possible.


Was this helpful?

Thanks for your feedback!