When I return home every few weekends to see my family, I can’t help but think about how things are changing; we’re all growing up. I am the youngest of the children at 22 years old along with my twin, my brother is 24 and my sister is 26. We’re in this phase of having all adults or “transitioning adults” in the family.
Just last weekend I was home to see my dad for father’s day and he said that “At your older sister’s age I was married to your mom and the next year your sister was born”. Picturing my 26-year-old sister with a child at this age is frightening quite honestly (but also, we need a baby in the family because I need to squeeze one ASAP!). My sister is not at the stage of her life to be thinking about a family and that is not entirely out of the norm for many 26-year-olds. It seems as though what is considered to be “growing up” is now happening later in our lives. I think that a large contributing factor to this pattern is the culture that has been promoted online for young adults. That culture includes self-depreciating jokes and the denial of entering adulthood.
I recently read an article by Cosmopolitan about the term adulting. Adulting is described on Urban Dictionary as “to do grown up things and hold responsibilities such as a 9-5 job, a mortgage/rent, a car payment, or anything else that makes one think of grown ups” and it is a lifestyle that is promoted when students are entering university or living alone for the first time. The definition sounds like a good thing to be promoting but the hashtag is paired tasks such as showering and getting out of bed before noon. Adulting is a popular hashtag or topic on quite a few social media platforms and that’s a large reason why so many young adults have caught onto the trend. At the twentysomething age, there is a constant question of what we are doing with our lives moving forward and so naturally, we are looking for guidance. However, if the theme of adulting is giving us a pat on the back for eating breakfast, what do we have to strive for? The posts about adulting are shaping the way youth think about their future but more importantly, it is fostering a mindset for youth to put off responsibilities.
The term has been so popular that companies are tagging on to the theme to reach out to millennials. The adulting hashtags, memes, and these adverts are what allow millennials not to feel the need to grow up. I think there is no harm in being proud of making yourself dinner, and feeling as though you can be self-sufficient, however, that should not be at the top of our goal list.
What are your views on the pattern of people growing up later in life? How do you feel that the adulting hashtag relates to this pattern, if at all?