1. It’s such an incredibly awkward age. You’re still treated like a child at times, and yet when you really put forth the extra effort into actually acting like a responsible adult it goes completely unnoticed. (Hey universe, thanks for the acknowledgment. Yeesh.)
2. You feel inferior at least once a week. Oh, so yet another one of your friends has had a baby, gotten engaged, or got a sweet job? Envy is never pretty, but let’s be honest, we are a little jealous.
3. Family gatherings are torture. Have you experienced the feeling of dread when the Aunt you see but once a year asks “What’s new with you, what are you doing with your life”?
4. Getting someone to hire you is an absolute nightmare. I’ve technically been hearing this since I first started trying to enter the workforce, but, “We’re looking for someone with more experience for this position”. Just a nice way of saying “Thanks for wasting your time we don’t want someone we may have to baby”.
5. Trying to figure out what exactly is your life calling. Yes, I am well aware that there are people who have it all figured out at 20, but I’m willing to bet for every one person who has it figured out there’s probably at least 3 who have no clue.
6. Dating. This is the worst. At 20, you learn the super harsh reality that you either end up together or you break up. (Hopefully avoiding any potentially awkward running into your ex scenarios.)
7. Growing apart from people who were once your best friends. It’s a sad part of life, but remember when you and your bestie made a pact (spit, blood, or pinkie promise.)? Yeah, well your best friend has left the building. Cherish the memories.
8. Realizing that basically life is just like one huge high school. The cliques are essentially the same. You have the preps, nerds, jocks, etc. You’d think the transition would be easier then, eh?
9. Having just one last birthday to actually look forward to. Most of us 20 year olds have, of course, partook in underage drinking, but it’ll still be nice to go buy beer or whatever when we’re legal. After 21 there’s like no birthday you’ll look forward to. You’ll just be dreading them.
10. Having dreams dashed is almost a daily occurrence. You want to be an astronaut? Sorry, not really something you can do. What about being a lawyer? Nope, unless, you’re willing to have a fancy law degree and only be employed by your local Starbucks and be thousands upon thousands in debt.
11. You get insanely depressed when you think of all of this.
12. You play the lottery faithfully. Even though you know that the chances of being the jackpot winner is like so insanely slim.
13. You are more aware of every single horrible thing going on in the world. People dying, animals going extinct, wars raging, and so on and so forth.
14. You feel old. Which makes no sense, because we’re not.
15. You struggle every single day. It’s a never-ending cycle. You think so much about what excites you, or what you could maybe see yourself doing as a job. Which then leads to the thought “should I go to college”? You see? I swear it never ends.
16. We start to understand why our parents are always so stressed. Life’s hard, no doubt about that. There are people who are more privileged, blessed, or whatever. But for an average person life is rough and tough.
17. We lose a part of our childlike wonder. Do you remember spending hours with your best friend just using your imagination? I surely do, singing into a hairbrush pretending we were pop stars. Okay, maybe we didn’t exact lose a part of it. Maybe we just buried it, or forgot how to channel the imagination we had?
18. Your sleep is so messed up. Whether you’re a college student, employee, or fretful unsure, I would bet your sleep is so out of whack. If you’re anything like me, caffeine is essential for even beginning to function.
19. When you actually do try to get a goodnight’s sleep your brain won’t let you. All the things you did that day swirl around in your head. Every awkward moment, every comeback you should’ve said, and what you’ll be doing tomorrow is just right there intimidating you and forbidding you to sleep.
20. The fact that at least one of these reasons applies to you. I know being 20 sucks, but it’s not like you’re going through it alone. We’re not the first 20 year olds, or the last, but hey we’ll survive this craptacular year.