I don’t know about you but when I was an idealistic, acne prone teenager, I frequently imagined myself as an adult. Specifically a young adult – around University age. Now, it’s important to understand that all of my teenage experiences with young adult life came from the hit TV show Gilmore Girls, so naturally I had quite a few misconceptions. My 20’s aren’t all they’re cracked up to be and I’m blaming Rory Gilmore.
It’s more than likely that your University is not an Ivy League school. There are no ancient buildings, no dorm rooms with infuriating yet eccentric roommates and no half naked man children lying outside your room (actually that last one might be true). There are only lots of long, excruciatingly boring lectures that you actually should be going to but nobody ever does.
The other thing about university that NO ONE told me about is that you could honestly go through your entire degree without making a single friend. It’s certainly a lot easier if you’ve fallen asleep in a tutorial, and you can rely someone to fill you in after your nap, however it is definitely not necessary. University is nothing like high school and I can’t believe no one told me this. Thanks a lot Rory.
Now let's talk about dating: it sucks. It’s one of the most laborious and demeaning tasks you will ever experience as a young adult.
Don’t be fooled by the stories of my arch nemesis, Rory Gilmore. There is no college guy out there just waiting to meet the girl of his dreams. There’s no college guy who allows his muse to live rent free in his swanky apartment. No, instead, there is only Tinder.
Take my very first date with my first university age boyfriend. It was a crisp autumn evening, about 3am to be precise, when I suddenly received a very charming text comprising of, “Hey, u up?”.
Oh how delightful, my suitor has called for me. My Prince Charming arrives no less than 15 minutes later for a romantic yet impromptu date of making out in the backseat on the 6th level of Parramatta Westfield’s parking lot. That was in 2013, we haven’t spoken since. Thanks Rory.
Gilmore Girls also lead me to believe that if you were a talented student who received pretty good grades, everyone would want to hire you. I’m going to be blunt here: it’s all lies. Working as a student is often tedious and mind numbing. The only benefit of working at Coles is to pay for your instant noodle addiction. If you do manage to find a job that challenges you, chances are you’re probably not getting paid.
The amount of unpaid internships a young person is expected to endure before they are qualified to get a salary in the real world is astonishing. Money will be tight, so much so that you can expect to find yourself contemplating, “Do I really need food this week? It seems like a bad investment since it disappears so quickly”. Meanwhile, Rory Gilmore is living it up, being taken to fancy French restaurants by her millionaire father or loaded boyfriend. Now she’s just rubbing it in my face. Thanks Rory.
In all seriousness, I am very content with my current lifestyle. Twenty year olds aren’t supposed to live in an expensive apartment, rent free. We aren’t supposed to have all our college debt paid for by their guilty fathers or manipulative grandparents.
Your 20’s are your most formative years because you’re living pay check to pay check. I’m not endorsing this situation by any means, but I think it’s important for my fellow millennials to understand that it’s natural to have anxiety about the future.
My 20’s aren’t all they’re cracked up to be, and I’m ok with that.
Zoe Antoun is a 21 year old, dog lover and contributor at 20 Something Humans. She enjoys binge watching shows on Netflix, while simultaneously refreshing her twitter feed every 5 seconds. If you want to hear semi-sarcastic tweets about House of Cards, you can follow Zoe on twitter @zoekatharine or on instagram @furiosaimperator.