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D-FOX Developing Information

Millenials Don't Consider Themselves Adults Until 30

Millennials Don't Consider Themselves Adults Until 30

Mar 23, 2017 1:51 PM

Turns out, you might be a millennial and not even know it. Even if you’re approaching 40. As's Tony Maglio reports, according to new research by CBS’ TV ratings guru David Poltrack and Nielsen Catalina Solutions, the youngest millennials should be graduating college this year — but that doesn’t mean they all consider themselves adults.

The median age of millennials is 30, Poltrack says — meaning that half are older and half are younger. And 30 happens to be the age at which millennials tend to self-identify as adults, Poltrack said. For these purposes, an “adult” is defined as “someone who has moved out of their parents’ home, has a job, and pays their own bills.”

How did millennials start seeming so middle-aged? Poltrack says it because of “lazy” classifications that defined millennials as those 18-to-34. Poltrack, one of the most respected people in studying the demographics of TV viewers, uses designations like “millennial” to simplify who’s watching what.

He and the Center for Generational Kinetics both use the term to describe those born between 1979 and 1995, based on years prescribed by William Strauss and Neil Howe’s book “Generations.” It defines a generation as lasting for 18 years, and works forward from the giant Baby Boomer generation. Their kids, the next largest generation, are millennials. People born after 1995 are actually members of Gen Z.

Why are millennials taking so long to grow up and move out? Some of it is their fault, some of it is their parents’ fault, and much of it is everyone’s fault.

For starters, the December 2007-June 2009 recession made finding employment harder — especially for recent college grads, many of whom happened to saddled with a ton student loan debt. High housing costs, meanwhile, reduced any stigma connected to living at home.

“More controversial is the whole idea that their baby boomer parents have really coddled them,” Poltrack told TheWrap. “They’ve made it too good for them. Why would you leave?”

Well, at some point it’s pretty much to get married and have kids — to be an “adult,” in other words. That’s when people truly become valuable to someone like Poltrack, who wants them to buy a house and a few TVs — and tune in to CBS.

“Only now are they really coming into their own in terms of being major consumers of goods and services, and therefore a major economic component as well as a population component,” he explained.

The older people get, the more television they watch.

"We are shaped by our thoughts; we become what we think. When the mind is pure, joy follows like a shadow that never leaves."


  • mrpops09_CMOD_mrpops09_CMOD_ Chief Moderator
    As a 27 year old....I agree with this statement lol 
    Ephesians 6:12 For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.
  • GrumpyGuyGrumpyGuy Member
    edited March 2017
    An unfortunate side effect of it no longer being possible to afford rent + bills out of school. 

    Some average unpaid student debt balances:

    USA:      $37,172
    Canada: $25,000
    UK:        £44,000

    Students don't usually have to start paying that debt off until they reach a certain income level.  Many graduates will earn below that because they either can't find a job in their field or because they desperately accepted an unstable, low-pay position.  If they get raises or are "lucky" enough to find a job paying over the certain amount, they suddenly find themselves earning far less than before because they are making payments on huge loan balances.

    From what I could find, the average rent in the United States is $1,231/mo.  "Cheap" cities in relatively low-population areas like Iowa and Kansas are around half that.

    From what I could find, car ownership costs around $400-500 a month in the US.  Add food, clothing, entertainment and bills to that and I could easily see the monthly cost of living being $2,500-$3,000 for young city dwellers.  When loan repayments kick in it goes up quite a bit more.

    And if students find themselves unable to pay their student loans back after payments have come due?  I believe the most polite term to describe them is, "Fucked."

    Finance people, engineers and other IT graduates are likely earning more than enough from the start to afford a decent "adult" life in most cities.  Not everyone is in those fields, of course, and many degrees are no longer as competitive as they once were.  A BA, for example, now places its owner firmly in a crowd of unremarkable peers.  It's almost today's equivalent of what a high school diploma was a few decades ago.

    Many millennials don't have a chance at becoming "adults." 

    Personally, I'd argue that today's "adults" don't accomplish much of anything, besides the earning and spending of money, and that reaching the milestone of adulthood isn't what it once was. 

    It's time people had new options to pursue other than becoming a viable member of society (obedient consumer).  Of course, such options are not exactly forthcoming.

    It's a real dilemma.  "Adults" are pissed at all the kids who are either unable or unwilling to follow in their footsteps.  "Kids" are pissed at all the adults for creating what they perceive as an impossible situation for them to overcome.

    In my opinion, however, since it's the responsibility of adults to raise and educate children, the blame lies mostly on them.  It is adults who push the idea that all young people MUST go to university even if they have no idea what they want to do.  It is adults who keep increasing tuition prices, rent prices and the cost of everything else every single year. 

    It is adults who spend beyond their means and create debt, housing and other financial crises.  It is adults who turn children into "snowflakes" by coddling them and shielding them from every conceivable danger real or imagined.  It is adults who work in HR and refuse to hire the snowflakes that other adults created.  It is adults who hound people to pay back their student debt.

    Indeed, being an "adult" doesn't seem like the be-all and end-all of human existence.

  • Matt_ADMIN_Matt_ADMIN_ Administrator
    I watched an interesting documentary about the Moguls in India, and one of their generals attained great success and became a conqueror at the ripe old age of 13. 
    "...Say, 'GOD is sufficient for me.' In Him the trusters shall trust." (Quran 39:38)
  • Rosie_MOD_Rosie_MOD_ Moderator
    edited March 2017
    Ran away from home and joined the navy at 19 totally against my mother's wishes. Funnily enough my daughter did the same thing at the same age though it was with my blessing.
    It was the best thing either of us could have done.

    "We are shaped by our thoughts; we become what we think. When the mind is pure, joy follows like a shadow that never leaves."

  • Matt_ADMIN_Matt_ADMIN_ Administrator
    It does indeed seem like economic factors, as much as cultural ones, retard the transition from "childhood" to "adulthood" simply because the qualities of membership for the latter are driven ever more distant by a system that's come to realize that financial shackles are as good as any legal punishment, any ideological training, any threat of physical force, in keeping people docile and dependent - the very definition of childhood. 
    "...Say, 'GOD is sufficient for me.' In Him the trusters shall trust." (Quran 39:38)
  • University can tend to be ongoing well into the years where people were already out earning a living in the past.  Only went to year 10 as mum "pulled the pin" and said "time to get out to work"  although I would have gone further otherwise.

    "We are shaped by our thoughts; we become what we think. When the mind is pure, joy follows like a shadow that never leaves."

  • I left home and joined the army as soon as I turned 17.  I got out a few years later and finished high school and went to college.  It all led me right back to the army.

    "How do you tell a communist?  Well, it's someone who reads Marx and Lenin.  And how do you tell an anti-communist?  It's someone who understands Marx and Lenin."

    *Ronald Reagan*

  • It led me into a good civilian job which I never would have achieved otherwise.

    "We are shaped by our thoughts; we become what we think. When the mind is pure, joy follows like a shadow that never leaves."

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