Is turning eighteen all it takes to be an adult? What even is an adult? Big questions like these are always so hard to answer. I did some thinking on it, and I’m going to try to answer both to my best ability.
Becoming an adult does not happen the second someone turns eighteen. Eighteen is just a generic number the American government decided on because eighteen is about the age that most people reach adulthood. This means that there are some adults that don’t have their full rights; and there are also children getting to vote and own property. Because everyone becomes an adult at their own time, if they ever do, there’s no way for to prevent the imbalance of responsibility.
So… what is an adult? I came up with six qualities that all mature adults share. Adults have the ability to…
- Think rationally
- See other people’s perspectives
- Do what needs to be done
- Know when the right time for fun is
- Express thoughts effectively
- Confess fault
The most important quality an adult has, in my opinion, is the ability to confess fault. No one is perfect. It’s better to accept mistakes and move on than to bring out other bad qualities from trying to protect an over-inflated ego. Sadly, this capability is the hardest to develop. Swallowing one’s pride feels like a big pill looming in the throat, and tastes as bitter as well. It must be done, though.
A teenager has some of these qualities, naturally. The whole point of teenage years is to develop the qualities missing from the list above, in order to be well-rounded and function in society. Changing habits is tough, and the transition from childish ways to an adult demeanor.