The moment an individual turns 18, they are considered an adult. The right to vote, you can join the army, and get a tattoo are just some of the new exciting responsibilities/opportunities you aquire. But, just because legally you are an adult, the age old question is, “Do you know what being an adult actually is?”
A general answer to this question is they, “think,” they do. I will generalize this statement; usually all 18 year old's think they are unstoppable, nothing is going to happen to them, they are above the law, and the world is at their finger tips (as they use their other hand to spin the world themselves). But, in reality turning 18 and learning how to be an adult or, “adulting,” as I like to call it; is one of the scariest, nerve wracking, and amazing time of a person's life. Take into account that an 18 year old's scary, nerve wracking, and amazing emotions can and will happen all at once when their making the decision to go to college or does this individual want to settle down? And to THINK these are only TWO of the major decisions that this 18 year old will have to make in their early career of adult-ing.
Now I am not saying this to be intimidating and have kids be fearful of growing up; I myself just turned 25 years old and have to admit I quite enjoy the idea of being an adult. Even though I have to make tough decisions and live with my consequences, the freedom of choice is a powerful and wonderful thing to have.
There are a few things (in my personal opinion) that almost halts a persons ability to grow up and be an expert at adulting. One of the major things is going away to college. I know, this is usually not a popular opinion among college students, but just hear me out. When you go away to school all you can do is eat, breathe, and live college. Sometimes you can get a job on campus, but sometimes you can not; which without an income you have to rely on other people (be it government aid, parents, or guardian) to help you survive. Yes, you can make adult decisions like going out and partying on the weekends, but you can't really support yourself without having a job or some source of income. Yes, you get an education and after school you go out and (hopefully) get a job to start your career, which is amazing! But, that means you don't start actually being an adult until the age of 22-25 (depending on how much schooling you go through). I fall into this category, granted I didn't go away to school, but I didn't start my two careers until I was 23-25; right now I wouldn't even consider myself to be adulting well at all, but it is what is is unfortunately. My mom still helps me out a lot; she doesn't charge me rent, helps me buy food, lets me use her old car, and many other things. So, I am not bashing anyone that is not adulting well, but just bringing insight to what it takes to be an adult.
Turning 18 is a wonderful time in an individuals life. It's full of new choices and responsibilities. You can essentially do just about anything (give or take). But, you also have the challenge of making the RIGHT decisions for your own personal life. If you can do that, you are one step closer to being an adult and really discover the true meaning of “adulting.”
*image from http://muckymind.com/its-pretty-okay/grow-up*