Why you should listen to your parents and should not get a tattoo until you’re 25 years old: Bounded rationality in the context of young adults

The current state of knowledge in the natural sciences argues the human brain does not completely develop until approximately 25 years of age. In particular, young adults have relatively more difficulty estimating the potential negative consequences of their actions due their incomplete brain development. In Economics, the argument would be simply that rationality is bounded at varying degrees throughout the individual’s life.

Thus, if a rational individual with less than 25 years is made aware of this information, the rational choice would be to give more weight to advice from adults over 25, such as parents or older siblings. This has profound policy implications for adolescents and young adults who do not want to listen to their parents.

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