Growing up is hard.
When asked how we stayed so young, most people would say "immaturity." When I was younger, it wasn't that I had some secret for not aging; I just didn't act like a responsible adult, so I had the illusion of youth.
At some point, I had to grow up — you can delay doing what you need to do like pay your taxes, but it's only going to get worse (fees and penalties on those taxes).
You can, however, delay feeling like an adult until you're the ripe old age of 29 ... that is, if you're British and have a youthful spirit. According to a study conducted by Fly Research, published in The Independent, the average age a British person feels like an adult is age 29.
That's eight extra years of youth by American standards.
After interviewing 2,000 British citizens ages 18 and over, researchers found that most of the participants didn't feel as if adulthood began until 29 years old. The point of the study (which was commissioned by the Beagle Street life insurance company) was to find out the variables people associated with adulthood and maturity.
What's the number one way people feel like adults? Home ownership. The biggest reason for feeling like a teen is still living with parents and depending on them for help financially.
According to the study, these are the top 10 reasons for feeling like a grown up, or not feeling like a grown up.
- Buying a home
- Having kids
- Having a pension and/or retirement plan
- Being in charge of how your house looks
- Life insurance
- Feeling happy about not having to go out for the night
- DIY work
- Hosting a dinner party
- Having a joint bank account with a significant other
Matthew Gledhill, managing director of Beagle Street, said in a press release to Mic, "Growing up is less about years and more about reaching milestones. With each of these life events there is a need to take responsibility and a need to become an adult, as you have people depending on you to do so."
So, you don't have to be a grown-up unless you feel like a grown-up, and you can avoid that feeling for a while if you refuse to take responsibility for things and avoid all adult milestones (buying a house or having children). But if you do that, you're going to miss out on the enriching and amazing experiences you can have as an adult.
Acting like a teen is good when you're a teen, but not when you're pushing 30.