Growing up - common sense
"When you Grow up"
You’ve heard the phrase ‘When you Grow up” from people all of your life. You want to stay out later than dark, the answer “when you grow up”. When I was a small girl I wanted a Horse, I was told “When you grow up and get married, then you can have a horse”.. For the longest time I thought horses came with husbands. When can I drive? “When you grow up”. Heck it was even used in the movie 'Men in Black'.
As time wore on and I got older, the rules changed slightly, but there was still that ‘When you grow up’ hanging over my head. I got to stay out later than dark, I eventually got my first job, then my drivers license and finally a car. Somewhere along the line I figured out that husbands really didn’t come with horses. If I wanted a horse, I’d have to have so many things for them, property of my own was part of the equation.
I had some darned good examples of grown ups in my own home, my folks. They taught me well. At some point or other I did ask my mother “Am I grown up now?” She had to laugh, and replied “If you have to ask that question, you might just have a little more growing up to do”. Well darn. How was I going to know when I was grown up?
Grown up does not mean mature
I had some thinking to do on the subject. As I grew even older and was married, began having kids and in the process dealing with other adults I could see a definite difference in being grown up and being mature. Sometimes they went hand in hand, but for the most part I discovered that being all grown up, being an adult did not mean that those very same people were mature.
There are so many ways that signify when you have grown up, You’ve turned the legal age of an adult. You’re allowed to legally drink. You can rent your own apartment. You have bills in your name. You can buy a car. You can vote. You can make decisions for yourself.
Does this truly make you a ‘Grown up’? If the maturity doesn’t come with age then you still have some growing to do.
Youth of Today
I have witnessed many teenagers/young adults who feel that because they have either impregnated a girl or have given birth, that makes them an adult. They want the benefits of what adulthood brings. For instance a 16 year old who has a baby deciding that because she has went through this most painful process it gives her the right to go and party with her friends, whenever she wants.
My response to these young people: “Little girl/boy, just because you have created a life does not make you an adult. When you have taken responsibility for said child, buy it diapers, sit up all night with a screaming child, pay for a baby sitter (and not rely on your Mom), live on your own, pay your own bills then come back to me and we will talk about the joys of adulthood.”
Too many Adults, not enough maturity
There are many things that I have witnessed over the years that tell me we have an awful lot of adults walking around that still have a lot of ‘growing up’ to do. Some of them have taken on the responsibilities of raising a family, paying their bills and in general ‘doing what is right’ in the ‘adult’ sense. This does not necessarily make them a grown up.
I’ve witnessed these said adults do everything they could to try and recapture their youth. This to me is the saddest part. For those people have missed a lot of their own life.
Pot Smokers - Yes, I said it!
One of my biggest pet peeves regarding this is some pot smokers. Personally I am not, I have grown out of the need for such a form of entertainment. I do not condemn those who wish to partake, but the behaviors of some I do take offense to. Let me explain:
I have yet to understand the nature of the beast when it comes to pot smoking, pot smokers do not like to smoke alone. They would much rather fire up that fattie with someone. It irritates me beyond anything that I can describe to see a young person ‘under the legal age of adult’ smoke with an old person. When it comes to Marijuana, anyone older than 25 is old. To view a 30, 40, or 50 something person doing the ‘puff-puff pass’ with a teenager makes me want to scream obscenities at the ’adult’. Truly, they should know better.
To this I say “You want to fry your brain cells I really don’t care, but STOP corrupting the young!” and “You know, you really AREN’T ’cool’, you’re just providing free pot and they laugh at you behind your back because you‘re so stupid.” So for all of you ’adult pot smokers’ now you know. How do I know these things? Because I was young once, I did inhale with you oldsters and yes, we did laugh at you behind your backs. Oh, you were ’cool’ for the moment, until we left, then you were just another old person trying to be young. (admit it, some of you are nodding your heads)
Let's get a divorce to stay young - Yeah, like that's gonna work!
Another of my pet peeves is old guys who try to recapture their youth by dating young girls, and vice versa, in today’s world those women are called ’Cougars’. Divorcing the ’starter wife’ so you can buy a fancy car and go out partying with all the young girls. Do you not realize they aren’t looking at how good looking you are? They are checking out the size of your wallet. The more money you spend, the happier they are. They believe their value as a person coincides with the amount of money you have to spend. For the record, when you can’t keep up with their youthful libido, they will go searching elsewhere.
For the women who are out chasing younger men, oh for cripes sake! Grow up! They only want you because you ’put out’. Do you really want to date someone who is younger than your youngest child? For now that is great, you might just be in your prime. But what happens when 10 years or so passes? When time has marched right across your face? Do you honestly think a 30 something man is going to hang out forever with a woman he has to push around in a wheelchair because you need a hip replacement? Keep in mind that the thought of sex crosses a man’s mind approximately 14 times per day. Have you deluded yourself into believing that when you can no longer participate in those activities to which he has come accustomed to, he will stick around?
For both the men and women in these scenarios I say: “You are more than likely NOT Demi Moore and Ashton Kutcher, will he consent to push her around in a wheelchair? Only time will tell. You are more than likely NOT going to find a love match through an alcohol induced stupor. Work related romances will wither and fade for the most part, unless you both do some serious growing up.”
For the Record
For the record, there are some ‘May-September romances’ that do pan out. The reason behind this is at least one of the two have matured by the time this relationship happens. There is a lot of concessions that the younger of the two will have to make, if they are willing to make those then yes, it will work.
High School retirees
The last but certainly not final part of maturity are those that have never quite left high school. They may have long ago left the class room behind, but the mentality is still there. You remember those people. The ones who said “What are ya? Chicken?” Those adults still roam the streets. There are those who may have discovered your weakness as a youth and continue to try to use that against you as an adult. Those that for some reason think their beauty or prowess impresses you. Those that want to gossip about others, pretending to be a friend. The friends who do everything they can to sabotage your good feelings or about good things you have done. Those who want to brag about their past, or ‘1 up‘ the things you have done. These are the ones who have not quite grown up.
To those high school retirees this I say: “High school was long ago, leave it behind, the rest of us have. You are the only one living in that world. Peer pressure - Really? Now you’re just going to make me mad. I don’t care how many boyfriends you could have had or do have. I don’t care how many people you have slept with. I have grown to value myself as a person, it is time you do the same. Stop trying to make me feel bad because I am trying to be successful. My life is busy enough, I don’t need to worry what someone else is doing in their life, so stop the gossip. I have become comfortable in my own skin, I do not need you to remind me that once I was uncomfortable in it. When you ask me a question and I begin to answer it, PLEASE - I am not impressed because you did it better or bigger than I did. Your immaturity is showing and it makes me want to avoid you at all costs. You must have a life somewhere, go live it! ”
Never stop growing!
In life we all have to continue to grow and mature, this is something that we all come to in our own minds. I cannot tell you when you have ‘grown up’ only you will know. Your first step will be when you think back on all the things you have done and people you have hurt. If you feel bad about those things, then that is a first step. Either make amends or promise yourself you will never stoop that low again. Then you will know the growing up process has begun.
No one is saying you can’t keep a youthful spirit, or be young at heart. These people appreciate youth for what it is. They smile at the young and try to be helpful, yet realize there is some growing up that needs to be done. Maybe a wistful thought or two of ’what might have been’, but it never goes beyond that, a thought.
More by this Author
You might have sat around the dining room table at one time or another listening to tails from “Dad, Grandpa or Uncle” of how they once got into trouble as a youngster. They might have done some ‘joy...
It’s happened once or twice to most people, more to some. I happen to be the ‘some‘. I have opened my doors to many people who are in need, offered my couch, my kitchen as well as laundry services...
Having a warrant for your arrest can be scary. If you find yourself in that situation, here's what to do.