- Future Child: Dad, I think I'm in love.
- Me: Well like us old tumblr users used to say, "bitch I might be".
- Future Child: Dad how is that even relevant
- Me: Do he got the booty my child.
- Future Child: ...what
- Me: Child. Do he got da booty.
- Future Child: *sighs heavily* He doooooo.
- Me: Then I ship it, my child.
so someone once called my old english teacher immature (because at this point he was spinning around on a wheely chair) and he said:
“Yeah, but the truth is we never really grow up. We just masquerade as adults because that’s what we’re expected to do.”
and to this day that is the single most profound thing i have ever heard uttered by someone dicking around on a swivel chair
We Are Not Impostors
I was sitting down just now with a delightful Bauernomelet (just made) and a hard cider (left over from my birthday a few days ago) and thought to myself, half-jokingly, “Hey, it’s almost like I’m a real adult!”
I hear that sentiment all the time from the people I spend time with, but somehow it’s never occurred to me til now to wonder why it’s so prevalent in my generation. We all seem to feel like we’re still playing dress-up in our mother’s heels and pearls, and if a real grownup catches on we’ll be in big trouble. “Hey, you!” they’ll shout. “Stop right there! I need to see your adult card!” Oh no, you think. My adult card got suspended last Wednesday because I built a blanket fort and then didn’t know which slip to fill out at the bank.
Maybe it’s not just us: maybe our parents felt this way in their twenties, too. I know my mom still does. (Hi, mom!) But it sure seems like we’re more self-effacing about it. We have this story running in our heads that everyone but us has Got It Together and we are the sorriest so-called adults ever to have existed. And I don’t know why.
Maybe we just got too bombarded with “Teenagers are so irresponsible!” messages that now we feel like we’re irresponsible forever;
Maybe we’re afraid that claiming the title of grownup means we’ll truly have to take responsibility for our lives and then we will inevitably fuck it up;
Maybe having so much knowledge at our fingertips (yay, internet!) is why we feel like we should always know what we’re doing;
Maybe I’m extrapolating from a skewed demographic because all of my friends have depression and/or anxiety and are more likely to have self-loathing recordings playing on repeat internally;
Maybe we’re just more willing to admit we have no clue what we’re doing;
Maybe we’re just more scared of not knowing what we’re doing;
Maybe adulthood is evolving into a totally different thing from what it was for our parents’ generation and so we actually have less of an idea what we’re doing than people our age did in the past;
I really don’t have a freakin’ clue.
But notice that none of those options are “we are actually the Worst At Adulting Ever™”. Seriously, guys, I’m pretty sure this is a thing that’s happening in our heads. That doesn’t make it any less hard and scary to deal with, but it changes the playing field. That teller at the bank? You did not actually ruin her day/everything ever by bringing up the wrong slip. She deals with that kind of thing every day from people ages eighteen to eighty and it doesn’t make a lasting impression. She doesn’t look at you and think, “God, I bet this person doesn’t even know how to brush her teeth right.” (Or if she does, she’s kind of a jerk.)
We are already real adults. We are already acting like real adults, in that we are muddling through life trying to do the best we can with what we’ve got. Sure, there are people out there who know what they’re doing with their lives, but some of us do, too, so why would we be any more insecure about it?
Let’s give ourselves some credit here.