Things People Don’t Tell You About Your Twenties

I had a long chat with one of my best friends recently–she is usually sort of inaccessible, due to law school–but now she’s on vacation.

We’ve known each other since high school, which is now 9 years ago, so we’ve shared, grown and discussed the often painful aspects of growing into our twenties.

I’ve read a lot of “Things Women Should Know By 30” and “Things Women Should Experience by 30” and “What People Don’t Tell You About Your Twenties” lists. None of them apply to me. But then, I’ve always been weird. 
So this list may not apply to you–it’s specific to me and my friends, with whom the phrase “they didn’t tell us this was going to happen in our twenties” has come up a lot in recent months. But perhaps you can relate to it in some small way. 
1. You Will Outgrow Some of Your Friends and Some of Them Will Outgrow You
Perhaps this should seem obvious. Even the leap from high school to college means that some friends will fall by the wayside. But sometimes you’re buried in law books or buried under a clearance rack or buried under reams of copier paper and your friends are not. Sometimes this one has a boyfriend or a fiance or moves to Europe. And then you find that there’s nothing to talk to this person about. Or perhaps that friend irritates you now. Or you discover that you have nothing in common anymore besides liking the same things on Facebook. 
2. You Start Getting Weird Health Issues 
One of my friends is a dancer (hi Jess! You might get to this post by July). Her right hip makes popping noises once in a while. I have an ankle that rolls often and occasional acid reflux. Someone else finds out that they are gluten intolerant. Your hair starts going gray.And you swear, as you stand up from chairs at a restaurant, stretching and groaning, where you’ve been sitting with your similarly-aged friends, that you are all getting old. And you swear these health issues only happened to, like, 40-year-olds. 
3. Everyone You Know is Getting Married or Pregnant
Once again, should be obvious, but it happens. Of course, this is a common one on “things about your twenties” lists. (I wonder if divorce is a big one on a “things about your thirties” list?) I don’t think it’s actually everybody around you; I have a strong coterie of single friends. But what happens is, one gets married, one gets engaged, another one has a baby–and then society suddenly zooms in you, the perpetual single one, and pokes and prods and wonders why you aren’t paired off. Then you say, “F*ck you!” (I didn’t make up a list in college called The Spinster Manifesto for nothing). 
4. ‘Bye ‘bye Metabolism
Those cute pair of jeans you bought a month ago? Can’t button them. Last year’s pencil skirt? Looks ridiculous over your butt. Everything you eat appears on your expanding thighs.

5. Sometimes you feel like a teenager who can drink and has a credit card. 

Um, sometimes? Try most of the time. I still have acne. I swear, all those supposed twenty-somethings being so young and free and so damn grown-up on TV didn’t have acne. Also, they all seemed to have careers as opposed to a lot of hobbies and a crappy job, but that’s a different story for another time. 

13 thoughts on “Things People Don’t Tell You About Your Twenties

  1. I completely agree. Great entry!You should start anything one for things they don't tell you in your teens. For example, all of the varsity sports and sports related accolades you get in your teens, translates to broken hips and cracking back in your early twenties!


  2. Well, I can definitely relate. Especially to number 3. Once they start having babies, you never see again…at least not without a baby or four in tow. Yes, four! And that particular friend wants 5!! *sigh* One thing I wished I had listened to that someone did tell me…You WILL have a quarter life crisis in your twenties. I'm in the middle of mine. So much fun…


  3. @Diane—I've heard that supposedly, one is supposed to feel more settled or confident or something in your 30s and 40s. I hope that's true. @Sonny–I'm not athletic in the least, so my cracking joints are due to a sedentary lifestyle that comes along with spending hours in front of a computer, writing. Everything else is sadly genetic. @Krystal–nobody told me I was going to be mired in quarter life crisis! I wish they had! It doesn't feel that different from teenage angst in a lot of ways.


  4. I really think I am the only person on facebook who is without child. Or at least that's how my friends' feed makes me feel.#2 is depressing. There used to be a time when I could sit/lie on a hard floor for hours and hours without repercussions. Not anymore….


  5. Yep–I'm at the \”outgrowing of friends\” stage. It might sound cold, but some of my friends have gone so far away from where we were that I'm not sorry to see them go. Others…kinda stings that we aren't as close as we used to be anymore!


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