many of mine were close to my age - but were more street-smart, stronger, had more status and peer respect, were in positions of authority - teams captains, higher ranks in scouts, more popular or self-confident, etc. the difference to me was not so much about age differences - but differences in power, influence, and social support systems. i felt weak, insignificant, and helpless in their hands and under their influence and control.
We are often troubled, but not crushed;
sometimes in doubt, but never in despair;
there are many enemies, but we are never without a friend;
and though badly hurt at times, we are not destroyed.
- Paul, II Cor 4:8-9