As a 20-something myself - 22 to be exact, or to be more exact, 22 and 200 days - I loved this NY Times magazine article written by Robin Marantz Henig back in August 2010. Henig asks, “Why are so many people in their 20s taking so long to grow up?” stating that,
“It’s happening all over, in all sorts of families, not just young people moving back home but also young people taking longer to reach adulthood overall.”
The article terrified me, however I am fully aware that I don’t HAVE to be one of the many 20-somethings the article nicknames “the boomerang kids,” although, I wouldn’t mind having an awesome moniker like that, so I’d be happy with the name as long as it didn’t infer anything…
I know that it’s easier said than done but I think that many of my peers today (though not many of my friends) like to use the economic environment as an excuse for their laziness. I’m not generalizing because as I said in the parentheses, most of the kids I know are extremely hard-working and self-sufficient. But like Henig, I do think a lot of people my age are also completely content to sit on their parents’ couch until they’re 30; and I find that so sad. But, not because I believe they’re straying from social norms or putting pressure on their parents, emotionally and financially, and not because I think it’s unfair that I have to work while they get to watch Oprah’s last season everyday, but because their potential is being wasted completely.
I am inspired by so many people, 20-somethings like me, who are doing something truly great with their lives whether it’s starting their own business like my brother (Elementem) or studying to become a social worker (like my buddies Caroline and Bex) or saving the world like Sean Carasso (Falling Whistles). I’m not doing anything special like them…yet. But, at least I have the goesting for a purposeful life and I’m trying every day to figure out what that entails.
I’m a senior at a great university in NYC, studying political science and minoring in social and public policy. I have no idea what I plan on doing with that but hopefully some good stuff! It seems there are many 20-somethings out there spending the best years of their lives partying it up in their parent’s basement when they could be out their making an impact in some way. This generation is next up to lead the world and the generations before us have left us pretty fucked-I guess I can only hope that my children’s generation doesn’t continue the cycle.