My good friend, Lindsay McCullum (an English teacher here) sent me this article from the New York Times. It is a pretty lengthy read, but it really caught my eye because A. one of my majors was psychology and B. It completely legitimizes why we are all here putting off the real world basically.
If you don’t want to take the time to read it, here it is in a nutshell:
Psychologists are claiming that there is new stage of development called “emerging adulthood”…a stage of growth that occurs between adolescence and adulthood. They’ve began to study this supposed stage because of the increase in 20-something year olds doing various non-job activities such as; traveling, au pairing, teach for america, teaching english in other countries, moving back in with their parents, doing a “5th year,” going through 5 jobs in 3 years and other “self exploration” things. I know at least 60-70 people from my graduating class and the class above mine that are doing one of various activities mentioned above. (I even have a friend teaching English in TURKEY…visiting her soon.)
Further, Psychologists think this “stage” correlates with societal and cultural factors and that it is emerging because of some if not all of the following reasons:
1.) the information based economy of today makes us feel as though we need more knowledge and information than we graduated with in order to “make it in the real world” (true-for me at least)…basically we don’t feel “prepared” enough
2.)there are so little entry level jobs (duh)
3.)because people don’t feel rushed to marry nowadays. This is due to birth control, premarital sex and how socially acceptable cohabitation is (living with your bf/gf)..(possibly…it makes sense, the average marriage age is much older than it has ever been in the past)
4.) because women in general aren’t as anxious to have children due to so many more career options open to them today. Also, with assisted reproductive technology, the biological clock is hardly relevant anymore!
5.) Lastly, the article also claims that because of life spans commonly reaching into the 90’s or more today, maybe us 20-something year olds feel as though it is better to experiment now before making choices that we will have to live with for more than half a century….makes sense.
If you’re intrigued and want to read more, here is the article: