Responsibility. And why I don’t want to be an adult

Adult

Responsibility. I don’t like it. I am trying to do all I can to avoid it. Some crazy people purposefully fill their lives with more and more responsibility.

They get married. They take out loans. They grease up their baby cannons and shoot out babies at 18 month intervals. They claw their way up the property ladder. And at work they sell their souls to the highest bidder, all in the hope of finally reaching the holy land and securing a place on The Board.

Not the dart board either. The Board of Directors.

If I was ever put on The Board of Directors I would constantly be glancing around the room, thinking “look at all these grown ups!” I wonder if they know I’m only 9 years old.

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Procuring all this responsibility voluntarily seems utterly ludicrous to me. Responsibility is a like a chastity belt. It’s pointless and cruel. It stops us from being carefree and having fun.

I had to be responsible once. I had to make a grown up decision regarding a job. I did not want to make this decision. I was scared. If I accepted the job I’d face the daunting prospect of my new employer finding out I was just a 9 year old child in the body of a 28 year old.

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And if I declined the job, I would be labelled as unambitious and indecisive.

The more I tried to ignore the decision, the more overwhelming it became. I tried handing over the baton of responsibility to my friends saying things like “whatever you decide, I’ll do it!” But as most of my friends are grown adults, they all refused and told me I had to decide this myself.

In the end I chose to follow my gut which told me to eat some cake and hide under the covers.

I’m sure the employer got the message when I didn’t show up for the last interview. And if they didn’t and they’re reading this, I’m very sorry. I know I look like an adult but I’m actually just a child on stilts. Please accept this drawing as a token of my apology.Amasterpiece

 

Responsibility is like a game of dodgeball with the dodgeball covered in shit. Under no circumstances do I want the shit covered responsibility ball anywhere near me. No thank you. People are trying to chuck more and more responsibility at me and I’m trying to block that shit like I’m Ben Stiller.

My father, for example, is obsessed with the idea of me getting married and growing an 18 year prison sentence in my womb. No matter how many times I tell him I’m not ready for that jazz, he still bangs on about it every time we talk.

Dad: You know I really want you to be happy and start a family. Maybe you could get married and have a nice big party. I like parties

I’m not ready to start a family yet Dad

I want grand kids!

Okay well I don’t think I’m ready for that yet

Yes but don’t you want to have a nice family and a nice big party?

Dad I’m never getting married. Ever. If you put a gun to my head and said “Get married now” I would say “No, shoot me”

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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My Dad does not speak Femi-nazi

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Me: I’m never getting married

Then how are you going to have children?

You don’t need to be married to have children

Dad: I think it would be sssoooooo nice to have a nice big party and when you’re ready you can start a family of your own. I would make it worth your while of course…help you out financially, maybe get you a big house, nice car, buy you some car seats you knooooooowwwwww

Are you….bribing me?

Nooooooo you’ll need the extra money for the baby

I’m afraid to get married. I’m afraid to have a husband. It’s too grown up. It’s too scary. I saw that life once. And it freaked me the frank out.

When I was about 24 I was at this dinner. There was a husband and a wife there. Both of them were adults. The entire evening was spent discussing taxes, insurance costs and rising oil prices. Towards the end of the evening, the wife let drop this exciting whopper of a story.

She told us that every year, she rings up different insurance companies, getting quotes from each of them. This sometimes takes her up to four hours. When she’s done, she calls her original insurance company, telling them she’s found a cheaper deal and would they be willing to match it. If they’re not, she ditches them with the following words:

“Well if you don’t want my business I’ll have to take it elsewhere…”

Apparently, she saves herself £300 a year doing this.

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Not only was I repulsed by the fucking mundanity of this anecdote, I was also struck by how out of control I suddenly felt about my own life.

I wanted to jump on the table, pull my shirt up, stick my tongue out and scream OOGGA AHHGGAA OOOGGAA GAGGAAHHAHHAAHA like a wild animal.

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I felt so lost. Like I was being pushed down a road that ended with fucking tax brackets, factory shops and budget spreadsheets. I wanted to get the fuck out of there as soon as I could.

I want no part of that life. I want no part of it. I never want to be that woman. She embodies all my fears. I do not want to spend my days ringing fucking insurance companies and fighting over prices. I want to be free.

I want to go VROOOOOMMMM VROOOOOOMMMM whilst I’m driving. I want to put bogies in my belly button. I want to fart in the bath and pretend I’m in a jacuzzi. I want to stick acorns in my nose. I want to eat 100 sticks of Juicy Fruit chewing gum in one go.

*Side note – I just had my first piece of Juicy Fruit in twenty years. I’m very disappointed that in the twenty years since my mouth was last graced with the presence of a Juicy Fruit, they still haven’t managed to make the flavour last longer than 30 seconds. What the hell have they been doing all this time?

LiesI don’t want to be an adult. Adults aren’t free.

So often I’ll be skipping down the road and singing at the top of my lungs I like big butts and I cannot lie you other brothers can’t deny
And my boyfriend will say “sshhh, walk on the pavement!” But I don’t wanna walk on the pavement. I wanna walk on the road.

Adults are so fucking boring. They always ask the same questions. They always make the same small talk. They’ll go:

“Oh what do you do..?”

“Well at the moment I’m just talking to an idiot”

What do you mean what do I do? I do a lot of things. I probably did like 50 things today. They want to know what I do for a’living. Well for a’living I mainly do a’breathing otherwise I’d be a’dying.

I don’t have time for this. Honestly. Stale small talk literally make me want to fake a hernia.

I often find myself trapped in boring conversations with adults. Especially when I’m in an elevator. One of my biggest fears is elevator small talk. Those conversations are of no nutritional value to anyone.

They always go like this:

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EL2

EL4

EL6

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Adults are so predictable. On Fridays it’s all like:

“Oh what are your plans for the weekend?”

“I don’t have any plans. My plans involve being where you’re not”

And on Mondays they say “how was your weekend?” Then you gotta make up stories that will make you look both cool and grown up. Cos you can’t tell the truth. You can’t say “I watched three seasons of Desperate Housewives and ate about a kilo of gouda” You gotta romanticize that shit and say “I had dinner with some friends and went to the movies”

That is no way to live.

I used to think that by the time I was 25, I would finally feel like an adult and all that extra responsibility like squeezing out babies, having husbands and making elevator small talk would come easy.

But now I’m 28 and I’m no closer to feeling grown up. In fact, I feel younger than ever. Where does this leave us? Will I ever feel like an adult? Does anybody? Do you? And if you do, was there a significant moment in your life that signified your ascent into adulthood?

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57 thoughts on “Responsibility. And why I don’t want to be an adult

      1. This is the BEST thing I’ve EVER read on the Internet. Sooooo honest. And relatable. Please for my sanity keep writing.

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  1. I had such a good laugh now! No, there was no magical moment in which I suddenly felt grown up. I still don’t. And I have a husband and two kids. I hate small talk and I will never, ever phone 50 places to save money. That would make me cry. I do love my family and feel very privileged to have my two kids. Growing up is different for everyone. You shouldn’t feel that you are not grown up just because other people have a different view of it. You are an adult. And I think you are awesome!

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  2. Amiga I agree, the archetypal adult is caught up in mundane tasks. But the creative adult makes her own decisions. I’m 10 years your senior and I don’t feel like an adult (archetypal adult). I don’t own a home, don’t work outside the home, didn’t finish my degree…haha…lots of “typical epic fails”.

    I won’t lie to you and say it doesn’t bother me sometimes, but I make my own decisions based on what feels right for me, because living for someone else is a death sentence.

    And come on! Haven’t you visited my blog? Having kids, especially when they’re little is an AWESOME excuse to be silly. All these people are reading all these fantastic books and I’m quoted as reading Shel Silverstein and Robert Munsch – children’s books.

    I had my first son at 30. Women are having kids well into their 30’s and 40’s. You have lots of time lovely 🙂

    In other words, you’re not alone.

    Besos

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  3. You haven’t lived until your own teenager looks at you, eyes rolling, and tells you how immature you are….I’m 49…don’t EVER grow up!! Love your posts and Love your illustrations!!

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  4. So many bits of this made me laugh like how you’re really only 9 lol, the insurance anecdote, the juicy fruit and I would choose being shot too, shame on Daddy for being so pushy. Good humour makes light of the hard stuff and you spelled it out and illustrated it perfectly.
    Reflex Reactions

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  5. Thanks a lot, I´m turning 21 today, and I DON´T WANT TO BECOME AND ADULT, your post both made me smile and made me feel better about it, love your style, keep it up, I actually think you have talent, so who knows? you could become a writer. Any way, thanks for the post and good luck

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  6. Thanks a lot, I´m turning 21 today, and I DON´T WANT TO BECOME AND ADULT, your post both made me smile and made me feel better about it, love your style, keep it up, I actually think you have talent, so who knows? you could become a writer. Any way, thanks for the post and good luck. 😀

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    1. Happy belated birthday 🙂 Don’t become an adult. It totally sucks. The only good thing about it is you have more money to buy stuff. But even that is a con because it’s never enough stuff anyway.

      Thanks for all the nice things you said. Means a lot and definitely motivates me to keep going 🙂

      xxxx

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  7. Thanks a lot, I´m turning 21 today, and I DON´T WANT TO BECOME AND ADULT, your post both made me smile and made me feel better about it, love your style, keep it up, I actually think you have talent, so who knows? you could become a writer. Any way, thanks for the post and good luck. 😀

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  8. Well, I kind of feel you there. I’m only 16, and already my parents are on with the, “Get a job, buy a car, pay for this, do this shit, stop being a lazy asshole, blah blah blah…” bullshit. It’s good to know that I’m not the only one who has to silently suffer the fears of adulthood. I hate having to put in applications and do all the damn chores that my mom has pushed on me in the past year. Growing up is not for everyone you know! I cry myself to sleep at night as I have to watch my freedom slowly fall victim to the luminous shadow that is life. I don’t want to. Just let me finish high school, THEN I’ll do all the boring stuff that I’ll be forced into slaving away at anyway…

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    1. I totally get what you mean. I know it’s hard but there are people out there (and I include myself in that group) who are saying ‘fuck you’ to the system. You have to make your life what you want it to be. If you don’t want to spend your days doing a boring job, paying your taxes and washing your car on Saturdays then don’t. Those alternative routes are out there. You just have to find them. They’re a bit harder to trek through because not many people know about them. Don’t be afraid. And definitely don’t be sad. Growing up is actually really great. Those fears and anxieties you have when you’re 16 won’t be there when you’re 29. I can guarantee that. Just don’t fall in the trap of becoming a slave to the system. Be you’re own person 🙂

      xxx

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  9. I’m only 15 and I already fear having to grow up. I wanna go back to 2008 when I had nothing to worry about. I fear losing my friends to adulthood, I fear having responsibilities, I fear to not enjoy my life, I fear seeing my parents grow old. I… I just wanna be a kid again.

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    1. I know what you mean my friend. Getting older is actually great. You’ll be less afraid. You’ll have more friends. And you’ll love yourself more. You don’t have to be afraid. You only have to be as responsible as you want. Listen to the kid inside you xxx

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  10. I’m 28 I can relate every sentence of this article and its like reading my mind. I am at the age where everyone wants me to get married sooner, but I don’t want to take that responsibility and tried to avoid as much as possible. I always know from childhood I don’t want to be an adult 🙂

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  11. I’m 21 and freaking out about growing up. I feel like I do not belong in this adult world and it feels like there is something undeniably wrong with me. This blog post really made me feel better. To think that there are people who are even older than I am who feel the same way is super comforting. Thank you so muchm

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    1. There is nothing wrong with you 🙂 I am 29 now and I genuinely feel like I am not made for this world. I think all of us are just scared children in the body of adults. None of us know what we’re doing. Getting older is nice though because the things that you worry about when you’re 19 or 21 will seem miniscule and silly when you’re older. Thank you for your comment. It comforts me to know that people read my stuff 🙂 xxx

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    2. comforting, let me reassure you even more…there are old farts out there doing the same stuff (I’m 41 and 11 months hahaha) and I tell my children all the time, life is not about following the flowchart, make your own Godddam flowchart, travel and read books and get a pet if you get a desire to nurture.

      Also I highly suggest anyone who’s not sure about having babies, DON’T EFFIN DO IT. Go get a job in a daycare centre, that will show you everything you need to know. Get on Quora, there are honest parents on there sharing why they wish they didn’t have kids (they go anonymous of course which is why you feel alone, everyone’s too scared and shamed into keeping this on the low).

      Go have fun, live life. The universe is playing via you – it lives through us vicariously and it’s so bored of all the mainstreamers. ha ha ha.

      The only good part about having kids is they are my best friends now. At 8 and 12 they are still so much fun to play with. They roll down hills with me while my husband laughs and encourages us on. They wrestle with me. We made the biggest cake last night – 7 tiers before it fell and we ate straight from the cake. My eldest did the cleaning – sucker!

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  12. I’m 18. I also hate responsibilities for slightly different reasons though. I just don’t care. I simply want to read books and sleep, forever. If I could skip anything else i would do it. Eating, talking, moving, even breathing. Working… bleh. I don’t want family and will simply work to have enough money to survive and buy books. I will probably just die alone and the current me will be pleased about it. In the end I just want to read books and sleep.

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  13. Hi! I googled “why don’t I want to be an adult” and came to your article. I’m 25. I’ll be 26 In July. Every year, even since I was as young as 16, I hated my birthday. I’ve had a crisis at every age and always made a reason for it. 16 was sweet 16 and all that jazz of becoming a woman, 18 I was now legal and no longer a child, 20 I was no longer a teenager, 21 I was now legal to drink and in my eyes there was no other age to look forward to after that, 22,23, and 24 were all just me losing my youth and getting closer to 30. On my 25th birthday I had a huge breakdown. “Quarter life crisis” they call it, even though I have had that crisis on every birthday. Like two weeks after turning 25 I had a horrible breakdown at work just because someone asked how I was…because I wasn’t ok, I had been a mess ever since my birthday. I couldn’t handle being 25. I literally couldn’t accept it. And now it’s almost gone! Anyway, I have this horrible fear of getting older and time passing. I don’t want to age another minute and I don’t want anyone else to either! I still feel like a child, so I relate so much to what you said about being 9 years old. I once told one of my fiends that I wanna be 19 and she said that was weird. I really do wanna go back like 5 years and just be young. It’s funny cuz at 23 I was flipping out and now I wish I could be 23 again. So at 30 I know I’ll give anything to be 25 again! I feel like something has to be wrong with me to NOT wanna be an adult. A lot of people I went to school with are getting married and having kids. Is it weird that I don’t want that? I still live at home with my mom and younger siblings. I know plenty of friends who still live at home, but they want to move out. They have goals to get a good job and save up and move out on their own….is it weird that I don’t want that? At my age should to WANT that stuff? My closest friends I explain this to
    Think it’s so weird. They all want all that adult stuff. My best friend is pregnant and I just cant even handle it. Is it abnormal that at 25 I still want to Live at home and stay with my mom and siblings? I went to college and never got a job with what I went for so I applied to graduate school and got in and am set to start in the fall, and now I’m second guessing that too! I know I need to if I want to ever have a real career (right now I work a 9-5 secretary job)… But thinking of going back to school and getting a real career scares me cuz it’s being an adult and to me it’s like setting in stone what I’ll be doing for the rest of my life. I’m just so scared so make big changes and do adult things. At what age is it not normal to not want to be an adult? It’s one thing to live at home still in your mid to late 20’s (or even older) because you HAVE to…but it’s another thing to be living at home because you WANT to.. Is something wrong with me? Why don’t I want all these adult
    Things at 25, soon to be 26? Will I ever be ok with being an adult? Also, every year when my birthday starts creeping up I fall into this horrible depression. Being 3 months away it’s starting now :-(… I feel like if this happened at 16…21….25 and at every age in between then it’s only gonna be worse at 30 and beyond! I feel like I’m doomed for a lifetime of this suffering. what’s wrong with me???

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  14. You are the funniest person on the internet right now.- I’m the biggest kid ever at almost 42 and with those awful smelly kids. They are my best friends. So much more fun than my peers.

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    1. If I’m the funniest person on the internet then you’re definitely the kindest person 🙂 Thank you so much! I love, love, smelly & awful kids 🙂 Spending time with my nieces and nephew is the single most rewarding experience. I love seeing the world through their eyes. Everything is fresh and new to them. Lots of love to you my friend xx

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  15. I was so grateful to read this post.

    I am 45 years old, in my second marriage and have four adult children.

    All my life I have been asked what I want to do next. It felt as if I was expected to have it all planned out. I still feel like a child trapped in an adult body sometimes.

    No one ever seemed to listen whenever I said what I wanted to do, so I stopped saying it. I would have a fire in me to do something and people around me would list the reasons and risks of why I should not. I knew the risks myself. Why can’t people say ” great idea, hope it goes well.”

    I let it restrict me I think because I still did not feel like an adult.

    I want to be free to be silly and laugh. To skip in the street, sing to myself as I am shopping, embrace my dreams and not shy away from them.

    You have given me the inspiration to make a start.

    I will have lost nothing in trying and risk losing myself if I don’t.

    We all should celebrate the child within us. Fun and adventure is not only for the young. It is for all of us.

    Thank you.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. 🙂 thanks so much for your lovely comment. I know that feeling of wanting to be crazy and brave to try new things and the outside world reeling you back in with reasons as to why you should just stay in your comfort zone. It’s normal to look to others for encouragement. But actually you don’t need anyone’s permission. You can decide for yourself. What I love about kids is that they are so bold. They’re not afraid of making a tit of themselves. They write books and draw pictures and make macaroni art and never do they let their inner critic stop them. Kids are great! We need to be more like them! It doesn’t matter if no one is listening. It only matters that YOU’RE listening 🙂 Lots and lots of love from a fellow woman-child 🙂 xxxx

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  16. Omg, twins. 29 and the same. My boyfriend mentioned I have like no responsibilities last night. Yeah, not many and I like it that way. So, I came to google to check it out. I’m one of your kind and I think it’s ok. I think people who are resentful of all the stress they have prob get a little jealous or have to look at it in a negative light. I prefer to have the least amount of stressors in my life. Two of the big ones…money and kids. Keep it simple.

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  17. Yes..too much responsibility can be so mundain but ok in small doses. And yes kids are the biggest..but I did find when I had a child I spent most of my time acting like one..so that may be Something your into one day. If not ..who cares ..go your own way !

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  18. I found this on google after crying to my husband how I’m terrified to have kids because kids means I’m a real grown up and have a serious stressful responsibility for the rest of my life. I’m 30 and feel like a child. Maybe it’s because I had the original helicopter mother. I too don’t wanna be another unhappy paper pusher 9-5 waiting for the weekend. I feel like at every stage of life I’m in a lost depressed struggle of trying to figure out what I want. Maybe there is no answer to figuring out life. Everything about kids makes me wanna run away screaming and I feel so defective that I don’t feel capable. I don’t want my life to be about another person and I don’t get how people can take that leap before there’s even a kid there to love. To the youngsters commenting know plenty of people older also feel lost and I think a lot of people are just thrown into a system and accept everything. It takes a daring smart person to question things. I don’t know if I will ever grow up but I guess I’m not alone!

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  19. o gosh, this is so true. you are 28, i will soon be 31 and i still cant be an adult. i literally give 15 mins on Monday and Friday morning to think as to what I am going to talk about about my weekends 😦 i hate small talks, as you said i find 0% nutritional value in 90% of the talks around me. i feel like saying i don’t need promotion if it comes with responsibility. i am happy doing my work but just don’t make me push into networking, socializing, relations building…all that freaks me out.

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  20. You are officially my new favourite person! How is it you explain my life so perfectly!
    You have brightend my day up like no one ever could….. and boy did i need it today

    Thank you!

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  21. I LOVED READING THIS!!!!!! Thank you so much for putting my 25 year old mind at ease that there are other people who have parents who always ask about marriage, understand the dreaded “what do you do?” judgments and the dodgeball of shit responsibilities game!

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  22. I just turned 20 (ew,) and this post made me feel likes I’m not quite as alone as I thought. I still feel anxious when I think about the whole thing, but knowing I’m not the only one is such a relief.

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  23. I’m like all of you. I’m 35 and the reason i refuse to age and get depressed every birthday is that i don’t find myself attractive any longer. I’m not attracted to people my age. I’m attracted to 18-25 years old. The more i age the less i become attractive to that age group. I like hanging around people in early adulthood not adult peers. I’m happy to have my own car and go where i want. I’m happy to have a job and make money. I hated going to school. I think the secret is getting a job you really want. If you get a job you really want work becomes like play. If i do beome a professional filmmaker and tv/movie producer. If i get the ability to work on scripts. This won’t feel like a job but just like playing and getting paid. My second choice would be having my own shop like my own restaurant or a video game/video store. I’ve been applyiing to University for both of those choices.

    It’s really hard for me to imagine myself in my late 50’s or early 60 still wanting to have a relationship with a 20 years old and trying to keep up with her. Even worse in my 70 or 80 if i ever live that old. I don’t see myself ever getting married or having a lasting realtionship ever. If i do have a love relationship one day. I can understand the pressure of getting married and having children. I would have liked it but i just can’t Society push the image of children and marriage down out throat. They is a tremenduos amount of pressure in society.

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  24. It’s nice to know I’m not the only one! I’m 29 and turning 30 in a few months. I hustle from short-term job to short-term job because I want to be free to pursue my dreams. I fear nothing more than being trapped in a stable job (the word c*r**r makes me shudder) with a mortgage to pay and overly expensive lifestyle to maintain. My lack of a stable income is starting to hurt my relationship, which sucks, but there doesn’t seem to be any way to reliably attain that without having the R-word thrust upon me.

    Ironically, when I was a kid I was seen as mature and sensible–by the standards we’d measure children by of course. Yet when I became an adult I was suddenly the immature one. I’m pretty sure it wasn’t me that changed though. It’s like most people have a switch that flips somewhere between 18 and 21. They’re probably robots.

    I do know some people though who’s lives have all the positive aspects of adulthood (financial stability, a nice home, companionship, and even kids if that’s their thing) while seeming to have lots of freedom, few responsibilities, and just being wonderful carefree spirits. If I must have adulthood at some point, I want it to be that kind.

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  25. “I need some adventure, and I don’t want to wait until my retirement to really travel and enjoy life” <- Love it! I am in my mid-20's and find woelrkif//adventure a challenging mix! You go girl! Can't wait to read about your adventure!

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  26. Sina, I found this blog post via googling “I’m afraid of responsibility” or something like that and now I’ve gone and binge-read everything on the blog. I think you’re a great writer and illustrator. I love your honesty and sense of humour. I don’t know too much about comedic timing… but I’d say you are really good at it in the written form. Looking forward to reading future blog posts 🙂

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  27. Thanks for sharing your thoughts DD (and everyone else) – i appreciated your irony, self-humor and fun drawings!

    My 2 cents: like my 3 other siblings, i grew up loving all the fun stuff (drawing, reading, lego, movies, biking, cooking, baking, music), while witnessing my parents arguing often over money and their relationship (mom took care of us while dad was working for the military).

    So early on I decided that i will never stop playing in life and that i will never have any financial issue! That was my plan by age 9 i guess.

    Well, long story short, this is exactly what i did – to that day i still play (music) for a living and spend the rest of my time doing my other hobbies. I have occasional lovers but no kids, no mortgage, never got married, never owned anything bigger than a guitar, never had to feel like working a single day in my life so far, and never had any financial issue. This makes me happy 99.9% of the time – and i ll turn 48 this year.

    So like others said: we are not alone, let s just follow our heart, do what calls us, what we like and the universe (or fate or whatever that is) will indeed take care of the rest. ;-)….

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