When are you really an adult?

Again today’s post is less of a rant and more of an observation, or maybe even a slight confusion. At what age are you an adult?

Ask a 16-year-old if they are an adult and they will boldly assert they are an adult. They can join the army, get married, but they can’t vote, so they aren’t really part of society to the same degree you’d expect of an adult. The SNP at the moment want to raise the age people can join the army, so maybe at 16, you’re still not an adult.

Get to 18 and you’ve earned the right to vote, so are you an adult now? Some 18-year-olds won’t get the chance to vote for a few years yet, so maybe voting isn’t the best gauge of when you’ve reached adulthood.

A significant number of school leavers now head off to university, I can confirm most people I met at uni talked about “putting off adult life” so does that make post-uni existence when you’re an adult? Or is it when you get an “adult job” also known as a graduate job. But what about those that don’t do university, or mature students, they’re probably an adult before they start so do they regress to a child when starting university? If they take an afternoon nap like many other students I think it is safe to say you have.

So, does this mean certain life events signify you’ve now made it to adulthood?

Is it hosting your first dinner party? – done that and blogged about it, although this wasn’t my first dinner party

Is it paying off a parking fine? – Done that too, but not after contesting it first!

Is it taking on incompetent estate agents? – Definitely done that one – scope for a future post on this!

Is it when you start paying taxes? Or is it when you start paying into your pension?

Maybe, here we have found the reason today’s post is about being an adult. Tomorrow is a momentous occasion. I start paying into my pension. I’ve only just started working life, yet I’m being expected to plan for when I’m old and no longer rocking up to the office every day. Worse still, my student loan is just sat there still picking up the interest, but I don’t need to start paying that back until April. So at the moment, I’m putting more into my future plans than I’m paying off past debt, this does seem slightly counter-intuitive.

It is probably a good idea we are expected to start paying into our pension when we are so young, especially as our retired years just seem to keep going up and up and we will need some kind of financial support through those years.

But 3 months out of university and those lazy student days already seem hundred of years old, but no, I’m just planning for when I’m a hundred years old, why can’t I hold on to my youthful days for a few days, week or years longer yet.

Don’t worry I have a rant ready for next week, this one is just a tad more timely, normal order will be restored for next Tuesday’s lunchtime.


12 thoughts on “When are you really an adult?

  1. Ella Ames

    I know those feelings a thousand times over!! My guess is that you’re finally an adult when you stop wondering if you’re an adult yet. But I wouldn’t know – I haven’t gotten there yet!

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Interesting… I always thought there’s a difference in being a legal adult and a real adult haha! And I haven’t hit that real adult stage yet. The paying into my pension timeline seems far in the distance for me yet, I still have to figure out what I want to do long term and where I would like to settle…
    Anywho! Great post!


  3. Juno Waterhouse

    A very interesting question! I guess the pension does sound very adult-ish, as does the dinner party but… I think you’re an adult when you stop feeling like a teenager lol which I guess is pretty logical and obvious. What I’m trying to get at is that I think it has more to do with your emotional state – how good you are at regulating your feelings, how well you know yourself, how much experience you have, how you handle problems and stress. I think the difference between an adult and a teenager is a certain maturity in the way you react to life. Personally, I started feeling like an adult (a crap inexperienced adult, but an adult) when I stopped feeling the anxiety of being a teenager (the need to fit in, the insecurities, the emotional rollercoasters) and started feeling more like myself when I was five years old (comfortable in my own skin, confident in my abilities, unafraid to admit when I don’t know something). Maybe that’s just me though!

    P.S. I only started feeling this way at 25 lol so…. I was a teenager for a long time.


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