“Maturity is a high price to pay for growing up.” (Stoppard 1) When teenagers are trying to grow up from being kids to adults it is a very hard transition.When growing up teens are stuck right in the middle,too immature to be an adult,but more mature than being a kid.Some teens however, are more mature than others.Being mature is a hard thing to overcome being so young still trying to grow up and figure things out. It takes a while to finally get to that stage just like John Updike wrote about in his short story “A&P”. Throughout the story he uses three main elements: symbolism,irony, and characterization to reveal the theme immaturity and failure of compassion.In the short story, symbolism is used to reveal how young and childish the main character, Sammy is, by criticizing every person so quickly without knowing them. Sammy shows his immaturity by giving all kinds of people brand names, whichcan suggest certain characteristics about that individual. While working in the store, he sees a young woman with six children whom she is yelling at, he associated that women with a “powder blue Falcon station wagon”. He relates the station wagon with sheeplike customers such as her because she is driving a Falcon. In his opinion, a Falcon suggests predatory aggressiveness which he believed she showed (McFarland 3) (P1). Sammy catches a glimpse of how the woman is acting towards her children; little does he know she could have just hit a breaking point with all of the kids.