I feel like young adults are misunderstood. We teeter on the bridge between adolescence and adulthood, a precarious in-between state. The responsibility of crossing this bridge is daunting, and I’ve found that the people on the adulthood side forget that.
As a university student in my 20s, I get stressed out, and sometimes, I can’t hide it. It comes out in rants, tears, or screams. My parents and relatives have received the butt end of this display. Yes, they do want to know what’s wrong, and how they can help. But I can also see another question in their eyes. Something that asks, “What does she really have to be stressed about? She’s so young.”
Adults sometimes tell me not to stress, because life isn’t that hard right now, and I should enjoy these days while they last. This “advice” doesn’t help me. Obviously, I don’t have as many responsibilities as I will when I’m an adult trying to make it in the world on my own. But that doesn’t mean my life right now is free of all struggle.
Young adults have to balance a lot. Many of us are still in school. We work part-time or full-time.
We volunteer or are part of various clubs and societies. We have friends, boyfriends and girlfriends, and families that deserve a chunk of our time as well. And amongst all that, we must prepare ourselves for what lies on the other side of that bridge.
We’re discovering new things about ourselves. We’re being shaped through experience and hard work. We’re making memories that will hopefully last a lifetime. Most of what we do now will have an effect on where we’ll be in the future.
Too much stress isn’t healthy. But when it does hit us, we shouldn’t be ashamed. It only means that we care. Crossing the bridge is a messy, unpredictable, and eventful journey. But hopefully we’ll be able to find solid ground once we reach the other side.