The theme of maturity shows that in order to mature, people must except change and lose their innocence. In the novel “The Catcher in the Rye” Holden Caulfield shows many times he does not like change, and neither does he want to accept it. During the story, Holden get depressed thinking of all the changes in the world. Holden tries to ignore the process of maturity, which is his one goal in the story.
Holden sees childhood is just a time of innocence, curiosity, and honesty. He sees childhood as a play to play, and have fun, a rye. In his dream of being the catcher and the rye, he tries to stop children form losing there innocence, which he sees as a cliff that the kids will fall off of. He wants to stop kids from falling off and losing there innocence. An example of Holden trying to hold on to his innocence and being immature is not having sex with Sunny.
If he would have had sex with Sunny he would have lost his virginity which is a big part of losing your innocence. Another example is at the end of the book when Holden helps the two little kids in the museum. Holden helps the kids find the mummies, and Holden takes them to where they are at. Holden remembers the fun he used to have and tries to relive his memories of being in the museum when he was little. Holden always seemed to be depressed and lonely throughout the whole novel.
The one thing that got Holden in a good and happy mood was when he thought of Phoebe, or anyone that has not lost their innocence, yet. Like when he saw the little boy singing the song while walking on the sidewalk with his parents. Or like when he helped the two kids in the museum. And most of all, him watching Phoebe on the carrousel at the end of the story, was what helped him understand that you have to mature one day and lose your innocence. You have to let it happen.