It’s practically a popular sport these days to rag on millennials for failing to grow up. They aren’t buying houses or getting married. They can’t handle basic political disagreement. They can’t even figure out how to buy stamps.
Jen Maffessanti has some words on this for her fellow millennials. But don’t worry – this criticism is constructive.
Seriously, y’all. Stop. “Adulting” is not that hard. It’s a realization I came to pretty recently as I inexorably march toward my thirty-fourth birthday. In fact, not only is adulting not really all that hard, it’s actually fairly enjoyable once you manage to make it a habit.
I’m willing to grant that maybe I had a head start in all of this. After all, I was only 18 when I was diagnosed with an incurable, chronic medical condition. I was a mother at 26 and a wife at 27. I’m a homeowner and a dog owner and a career woman with a great job and a lot of friends. A fantastic husband with his own great job is also a solid contributor to my willingness to embrace adulthood.
But these things weren’t always the case. I’ve been bad at budgeting, I’ve made poor life choices, I’ve made awful dating decisions. Becoming the adult I am today took years of work and trial and error. So, let me help you learn from my mistakes.
But what does “adulting” even mean? According to the internet, “Adulting is the assumption of tasks, responsibilities and behaviors traditionally associated with normal grown-up life.” Activities that fall under the heading of “adulting” include, but are not limited to, having a steady job, generalized housework, paying bills and budgeting, getting enough sleep, buying or renting your own home, and parenting.
Do you go to a steady nine-to-five gig? That’s adulting. Do you clean your room, do your laundry, wash your dishes? That’s adulting. Do you manage to pay your rent/mortgage on time each month? That’s adulting.
Despite my millennial-ness, these things don’t sound like they’re all that difficult. Okay, maybe they’re not all that much fun, but they are critical aspects of being a functional member of society. In fact, these are basic required activities that every other previous generation has managed to accomplish without inventing a new term to describe them. So, how is it that “adulting” became so hard for us?