The 21st-century 20-something

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

What's the rush?

It's 2013 and times, they are a-changin'.

I am sufficiently sick and tired of being grilled about my life plans, and when I'm going to get
married and have babies. I feel like family, friends and even social media are putting constant pressure on today's 20-somethings to be on a certain path in life.

Nowhere is there a rule book that says you have to married with kids, be wildly successful or even have one clue what the hell you want in life yet while you're in your 20s. To expect any of that from within a certain time frame is absurd.
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I think people too often confuse taking time to figure out what you want in life, or waiting to accomplish certain goals before settling down, with avoiding 'being responsible' and growing up.

Don't get me wrong, some people are settled down by 25 with a kid or two, and that's great; that works for them. But personally, that is not a scenario that would work for me, and that's not taboo or weird or crazy. It's 100% normal.

Social norms are changing every day and our parents and grandparents still expect us to follow the formula they did. Graduate, get a job, get married and have 30. With all of the opportunities out there now, they timeline doesn't make a good fit for everyone, and I don't think people should be judged or crucified for choosing a different track in life.

Many women are getting married and having kids later in life - and it's for many different reasons. Some want to establish a career, travel, start a business, join the circus, live off the grid - whatever it is - are all completely valid reasons to put off planting roots somewhere or staying in a job you despise just to appear to be 'a real adult.'

Sidebar: I'm not just talking about marriage and kids. People in their 20s are also expected to have a secure or well-paying job when it's hard enough as it is to even find a job after college. Then sometimes you get into a field or a job that your realize you don't even like, and have to look into another track. All totally fine, and acceptable to be doing any time, especially in your 20s!

Your 20s is now a time to soul-search, live life, focus on yourself - find out what you really want and start making steps to get it - YOLO, as the kids say these days.

So to anyone out there who feels like it's 'weird' that they're not close to settling down by 30 - just relax.  There is no right or wrong way to live life.


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