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I have my big girl pants on – but am I a “real” adult?

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The other day I stumbled upon a blog post from All Groan Up called “I’ll feel like an Adult When…

This realllllly  got me thinking about being a “real” adult.  I don’t look like an adult.  I don’t act like an adult.  But my age deems me as being a “Young Adult.”

  • I pay my bills.
  • I have a mortgage.
  • I have a car payment.
  • I vote.
  • I go to the Doctor’s office alone.
  • My insurance is in my name.
  • I do my own grocery shopping.
  • I have a career-type job.

So when will I feel like I’m an adult?  What dictates that “step” from college-teen to entering adulthood to full-blown-actual adult?  Is it maturity?  Responsibility?  Family?  Either way – I’m not certain I’ll be an adult any time soon.  I have my big girl pants on with responsibilities, work, and bills…

but as long as I still look 18

I will still feel 18

When did you feel like a real adult?

Photo Credit

16 responses »

  1. Ashley,
    I think you are lucky in that yes, you do look 18. That being said, many of us who aren’t as aesthetically endowed as you still feel young too. Soon to be 28, I still feel like a kid. Maybe this will change someday. I’m already feeling an urge to finish school (thankfully I’ll be done in May) and jump into a “career type” job – as you described yours. At the same time, I hope to never lose my child-like wonder at the world or my ability to dissolve into a crumpled pile on the floor when things get too funny. I mean seriously… what fun would that be if being an adult means losing your sense of humor.

    I have a feeling we don’t ever grow up. Those people who seem old were always boogers.


    • Chuck! What a funny comment – I giggled at least 3 times. I especially liked:

      Those people who seem old were always boogers.

      If you don’t want to lose your child-like wonder, I don’t think you will 🙂 You can stay as young as you want to, right? Thanks for the comment, Chuck!

  2. Pingback: I have my big girl pants on – but am I a “real” adult? (via Ashley Cray) « Pilant's Business Ethics Blog

  3. Hi Ashley,
    I love this post! While, like you mentioned, all the “defining” aspects of adulthood match up, I just don’t feel like a “grownup!” Luckily, I grew up with a fabulous mother, who is responsible & successful, and taught me that it is OK to never feel grown up! No one has more fun or is more efficient & productive than my mom! She’s my example and encouragement to always stay “young”! 🙂

    • I’m glad you like it, Mackenzie! Your mom sounds very much like my dad… he always says “I’m just a big kid” which is completely true. Sounds like you have a wonderful mentor 🙂

  4. Great post Ashley! 🙂

  5. Ashley!

    I have been taking care of myself more or less since my early teens so I have always felt “like an adult”. Now, it is time to take myself less seriously and enjoy my life as well as regaining some youth that I missed lol. Never lose that feeling!!

    • Wow – an adult in your early teens? Sounds like you had to grow up way too fast! As long as you are still young at heart and take the time for yourself to do the things that you want – that’s most important 🙂

  6. Technically speaking, it’s when you are no longer a dependent. You have a job, a family, bills to pay, etc.
    That being said, everyone’s transition into adulthood is different. Some people never grow up…and some are forced to grow up too early.
    All you can do is be you and grow up the way you want!
    I think many people think being an adult or parent has to be boring – it doesn’t! Make it your own!

    • You’re very right – being an adult doesn’t have to be boring or mean your life ends. It’s just that awkward transition into adulthood (the entire premise of your blog!) than makes things confusing. Thanks for the comment!

  7. Honestly, I find it is more a matter of a change in perception versus an actual change in being. To put it another way… adults really are never and were never as “adult” as they appear when you are young. When we are young adults seem as if they are stuffy, stern, and devoid of personality. It’s always been my experience that the inverse is more often true than not.

    Growing up I was always close with teachers and other adults, and I noticed early on that there really wasn’t much if any difference between us. Most of the perceived differences stem from the fact that adults often play the part of being authoritarian. When they are teaching they are doing their job and are one person, but if you are able to get to know then outside of that narrow frame of reference you begin to get a more full picture of exactly who they are as people.

    It’s all about perception; other people’s as well as your own.

    • Matthew- I could probably write an entire blog post on perception couldn’t I? Thank you very much for your insight and contribution to my blog post- I really appreciate it!

      As far as perception is concerned- you are completely correct. It is a matter of perception and the factors that influence it.

      Thank you!

  8. Oh my word…I had no idea such a lively conversation was taking place stemming from my blog post. Thanks Ashley for starting this. To add, here’s some thoughts from some of my readers.

    I’ll Feel Like a Real Adult When…

    The last of the ketchup bottle makes a fart noise and I don’t laugh.

    I stop feeling entitled to winter breaks, spring breaks, and summers off.

    My first reaction to finding out a friend is pregnant is “congratulations!!” instead of “holy &^%$, what happened!!”

    • Haha like I mentioned- your blog post really got me thinking! I loved the post and all of the comments so I made my own mini-“am I a real adult”-post 🙂 I hope you like it!

  9. Pingback: Failure to Fly or Money Smart? « Ashley Cray

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