Borderline adulthood – Old enough to be sensible but too young to be free
18th birthday and boom! Childhood innocence and immunity has officially left the building.
Well has it really? Borderline adulthood is the most confusing stage of all; you want to be treated with respect, get the perks of an adult, have your own opinion BUT still want to stay in bed past noon, shy away from your problems and live in the protection of your elders. Mostly it’s the latter you get, even if you don’t wish for it.
Turning 18 is never as you wish it to be. Things that plan; the checklist that you have in your mind, would never be as you hoped for it to be. That’s one of the realities that you face when you grow up.
Especially in a place like India; in the comfort of your home, engulfed in the blanket of love of your family and confined by the norms of the society.
When you (only) legally turn 18, you get your drivers license, yes. But not the car.That’s still a long shot. The car standing useless in the driveway is a constant reminder of your drivers license rotting away in your pocket and your parents, even though you are of age, refusing you to take the car out for a spin on your own. Because god forbid all accidents have to happen to you.
Being a year older is normal course of life, but turning 18 is a milestone in everybody’s life.
Although its ironic how we have voting rights and are entrusted with the responsibility of choosing the government because apparently “every vote counts” but my god if we step out of the house to go to a friends place for a bit too long, all hell breaks loose!
One of the most infuriating things that we ever hear and are unable to figure out why is the polemical treatment and lectures- “Clean your cupboard! Or “Make your bed!” “You’re old enough to do this now. You should do it by yourself.” However, if you say you want to stay out late for a party, just because its something that isn’t family oriented, we’re suddenly back to being treated like a 13 year old! Oh the irony.
The problems isn’t all our constrained to the house and the people in it. It’s the mindset that has formed because of the “unspeakable” norms set by the society.
The whole “impressionable age” syndrome that they suffer from. The hypothetical fears that our elders have developed in their minds, which is out of concern and care but its made a their mind a bubble of paranoia that they refuse to burst!
And that is why entering adulthood is the most confusing stage of all; not so much the transition, because frankly you felt exactly how you felt the last day of your 17th year. But it’s the way you expect to be treated and how you actually are. It’s trying to strike a balance between the way you wish to do things and how you actually do.
The paradox of being an 18 year old is that youre old enough to take up responsibility but too young to be free!