Memories & Childhood Development

On our last day in Ohio, our grandson asked to see Inside Out, an animated movie by Pixar, a division of Walt Disney Pictures.  Though my wife and I had limited knowledge of the film, we were more than pleased with our grandson's recommendation.

Focused on the development of a young girl, from birth to prepubescence, this clever production places emphasis on childhood memories, the emotions associated with them and their role in a child's emotional maturation.  Represented by a host of cartoon characters, the emotions include Joy, Sadness, Anger, Disgust and Fear.  The concept of "core memories," related to key aspects of a child's life, was a theme throughout the film.

In my opinion, three points made in the story deserve special mention.  First was the message that sadness is an unavoidable component of our childhood experience, one that places our other emotions in context and, in the end, is vital in molding our self-esteem.  Second was the point that an individual must abandon their childhood fantasies (here represented by an imaginary friend) in order to attain maturity.  Finally, when parents fail to recognize and address emotional turmoil in their children, tragic consequences may ensue.  I highly recommend this film.