Culture Adult Things No One Prepared You For  

Lauren Slocum
9.4k votes 850 voters 17.7k views 39 items

When you were little, you probably dreamed of adulthood. The phrase "When I grow up..." was probably tossed around with an air of whimsy and desire that made the progression of days seem more like a fairytale than a slow march towards death. And no matter how much you daydreamed about becoming self-sufficient and successful, there are plenty of adult things you never learned to do that leave you wondering, "WTF, Mom and Dad?" 

Ultimately, age doesn't matter; as long as you're physically capable, consider yourself age appropriate. But there are tons of things adults do that kids and teenagers never have to think about. Buying a house? Realizing you have back-fat rolls? Dealing with sexual harassment in the office? You may experience any or all of those examples during your career as an adult, and guess what? You won't have any clue what you're doing because no one prepared you for it. 

Many of the items on this list of things you learn when you grow up can't be taught. No one can really tell you what to expect when you have a baby, but why weren't we taught the best ways to grow our savings accounts? Or how to contribute to a 401k? There should be a class in high school similar to home economics that teaches you smart banking habits, how to file your taxes, and that lets you know one day, 70% of the friends you had will disappear into the murky abyss of social media

Do you ever wonder, "Why didn't anyone teach me that?" We all do! So if you're on board for creating a curriculum that actively scares the crap out of kids who are excited about being adults, you should contribute anything you wish you'd known going into adulthood! We can't promise it'll end up on a whiteboard or finals exam, but feel free to print out this list and hand it to your 10 year old. And - don't forget to vote up the items you think are the most critical to being an awesome adult.
list ordered by

1
364 56
Your Body Will Fall Apart is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list Adult Things No One Prepared You For
looksharp added Your Body Will Fall Apart

2
376 60
How to Deal with A**holes... T... is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list Adult Things No One Prepared You For
How to Deal with A**holes... They're Everywhere!

3
379 63
The American Dream Is Expensiv... is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list Adult Things No One Prepared You For
looksharp added The American Dream Is Expensive

4
375 62
Your Friend Circle Will Shrink is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list Adult Things No One Prepared You For
Your Friend Circle Will Shrink

5
319 56
Your Whole Life Will Be a Seri... is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list Adult Things No One Prepared You For
Your Whole Life Will Be a Series of "Fake It Til You Make It" Scenarios

6
332 62
Even Your Dream Job Will Still... is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list Adult Things No One Prepared You For
Even Your Dream Job Will Still Be... a Job

7
304 54
You Will Still Think in Terms ... is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list Adult Things No One Prepared You For
You Will Still Think in Terms of, "When I Grow Up..."

8
278 47
Standing Up for Yourself in Un... is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list Adult Things No One Prepared You For
Standing Up for Yourself in Uncomfortable Situations

9
309 65
Your Metabolism WILL Change is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list Adult Things No One Prepared You For
Your Metabolism WILL Change

10
245 46
You Will Have to Try Really Ha... is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list Adult Things No One Prepared You For
You Will Have to Try Really Hard to Keep Meaningful People in Your Life

11
232 53
Buying a Home is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list Adult Things No One Prepared You For
Buying a Home

12
255 66
Your Parents Become Real Peopl... is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list Adult Things No One Prepared You For
Your Parents Become Real People. And You Will Judge Them.

13
205 44
How to Handle Rejection, Both ... is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list Adult Things No One Prepared You For
How to Handle Rejection, Both Personally and Professionally

14
222 57
How to Establish Credit is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list Adult Things No One Prepared You For
How to Establish Credit

15
200 46
You'll Probably Feel Like ... is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list Adult Things No One Prepared You For
You'll Probably Feel Like a Little Kid Forever

16
212 62
Your College Education Probabl... is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list Adult Things No One Prepared You For
Your College Education Probably Won't Apply to Your Job

17
176 44
Falling in Love Is About Roman... is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list Adult Things No One Prepared You For
Falling in Love Is About Romance AND Practicality

18
178 46
How to File Your Taxes is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list Adult Things No One Prepared You For
How to File Your Taxes

19
159 36
How to Manage Your Budget is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list Adult Things No One Prepared You For
How to Manage Your Budget

20
197 59
Fixing Home Repairs on Your Ow... is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list Adult Things No One Prepared You For
Fixing Home Repairs on Your Own

21
142 31
The Workplace is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list Adult Things No One Prepared You For
looksharp added

22
155 44
Unemployment is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list Adult Things No One Prepared You For
looksharp added

23
160 48
Efficient Time Management Skil... is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list Adult Things No One Prepared You For
Efficient Time Management Skills

24
135 34
How to Grow Your Savings Accou... is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list Adult Things No One Prepared You For
How to Grow Your Savings Account

25
139 37
Setting Up a 401K is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list Adult Things No One Prepared You For
Setting Up a 401K