Why I refuse to turn 30
Right, so here I am, turning 30 and thinking to myself “Should I be called an adult now?”
My adult definition: An adult is a person who’s no longer dependent on their parents on one hand, and has people depending on them on the other.
The reason for describing it that way is that before the 1960′s there was no such thing as being a young man. You were either a child or an adult, which meant by the time you reached your 30′s you were either an adult or a failure.
As education progressed and life became more complicated than just going ahead, getting a job, a wife and children; people needed study to get ready for adulthood, so younghoodwas invented: this amazing time of life just before turning adult when you’re a student and can enjoy, experiment, have fun with a new sense of independence, but without the responsibilities of having your own family.
Some loved that lifestyle with such fervour that they simply remained in that state forever. Society called them immature and losers. Women didn’t want them, their parents wondered what they did wrong and no respectful careers could be accomplished by such an unorthodox and childish lifestyle.
Life then begun to get a little more complicated, jobs more difficult to master (or more underpaid), women got equality rights and, all the sudden, being an adult meant that both you and your prospective spouses had to go ahead, get a job, to have children by the time you were 30. With that, balancing time for your romantic life got even more complicated and they invented the term “quality time” to justify the small but intense time they spent with their children after the divorce.
Now jobs (those things you had one or two in your lifetime) don’t really exist anymore. Every person is a brand, a business, an entrepreneur. You just never stop being a student. Women can have children later in life and you don’t really want to buy a house because mortgages at this day and age just seem like a stupid idea. We’re all children of divorced parents, so young people choose to start slowly, move in together instead of getting married and adopt a cat to see if they both can handle the responsibilities of becoming an adult.
But now you turn 30 and you’re suddenly not a “youngster” anymore. And you can’t really be called an adult either if the maximum responsibilities you ever took was moving in with your girlfriend to an East London council flat with her cat. So what are you?
Who cares about labels anyway, you may ask. Well I don’t, but as you get older and refuse to become an adult (especially when you’re not even keen on that girlfriend/cat flatshare idea) you’ll always have to explain yourself in social situations, and that bothers the hell out of me.
So instead, while no one comes up with a better term (“stubborn-manchild”?) and I don’t have the patience to read this back to anyone, I’ll simply reply: I’m 29!