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To sometimes feel I need an adult, then realise I am one?!

74 replies

Buttonmoonmrspoon · 15/10/2022 23:06

Does anyone ever find in some situations that they feel they need an adult for help or support, and feel that they’re not old enough / mature enough / smart enough to manage the situation? Then realise that they’re an adult, and probably the same age as others were when they used to think of grown ups being responsible and able to cope?

Not sure if that makes any sense but I know what I’m trying to say!

OP posts:

Am I being unreasonable?

128 votes. Final results.

You are being unreasonable
You are NOT being unreasonable
Dillwyninthebath · 16/10/2022 09:28

Parents gone since my 20s so no.

LetsPlayShadowlands · 16/10/2022 09:30

I sometimes wish I had someone to 'look after me' like my mum would when I was off sick. Except I'm not even sick, I just want someone to cuddle me and bring me a hot chocolate and tuck me in because I'm tired and adulting is hard 😄

LetsPlayShadowlands · 16/10/2022 09:33

mondaytosunday · 16/10/2022 09:07

Absolutely. I've been a widow since my kids were very young and I sometimes wish I could at least share the adulting in my household. I have to make ALL the decisions, take ALL the responsibility, do ALL the life admin.
My mum was quite ill the last few years of her life, and we did most of the adulting things for her, but oddly enough the fact she was alive meant there was still someone ultimately older and more 'adult'. When she died, though things didn't change in a practical sense, there was a psychological shift - the buck really does stop with me now.

Sounds so hard

lennylion · 16/10/2022 09:35

Yes. At my age my parents had a mortgage, two kids and two jobs each. I have IBS and a cat GrinSmile

DeadbeatYoda · 16/10/2022 09:40

I've always been the one other people come to for adulting support. I'm the youngest of 5, classic latchkey kid so I've always been very independent. However, I have a great support network myself from an older sister who is like a best friend too and my relationship with my (late) mum was close. I always had their counsel, I may not always have followed their advice but I value / valued their thoughts on the important things.
It's hard being the one who coped with whatever comes their way but it is so much easier when you know you have good people in your corner.

wtfisgoingonhere21 · 16/10/2022 09:44

I'm so sorry to hear that Flowers

I am aware that I'm a lucky lady in that my parents are both here,nearby,fit and active and we have a really close relationship

My dad has just stepped in to take over my hideous bookwork skills because well I'm creative minded not business minded

I've had covid for a week and my mum has dropped food parcels and treats at my door every day.

When I can't adult I call them

Funnily enough I have an adult child of my own who tends to call me when he can't adult so it's quite funny really Smile

TitoMojito · 16/10/2022 09:44

This was absolutely me doing my tax return recently Grin

Bunnynames101 · 16/10/2022 09:55

Yes and no.

Lots of things I can do myself in my personal life or wouldn't be willing to ask for help with, if I can't work it out I pay a professional.

But I feel like I'm 'asking an adult' when referring questions too my seniors at work (some of whom are actually younger than me, albeit infinitely more capable and are to be admired for their accomplishments).

neverbeenskiing · 16/10/2022 09:56

Does anyone else find it easier to be an adult at work than at home? I have a very responsible job where I manage a team of staff but also have older, more senior people coming to me for advice and guidance on a daily basis. The situations we deal with are emotionally challenging and I have to be be calm to keep everyone else calm. I don't feel overwhelmed by the responsibility at work, in fact I thrive on it, but for some reason when I'm at home with my own DC I long for a 'proper' adult to swoop in and insist I go for a nap whilst they take over! Perfectly happy to take charge in a genuine life or death emergency at work but today I've got to do a food shop, get all the school uniforms washed and dried ready for the week and supervise homework and there's bloody lego EVERYWHERE and I don't know what to do first so I just want to lie on the floor in protest until a more adulty adult comes to save me. Why is that??

Coffeeisnecessary · 16/10/2022 10:17

nonstoprenovation · 16/10/2022 08:18

That's scary, hope he's ok

Thank you, yes after an operation and a lot of wrangling with insurance bills he is all fine now!

HighlandPony · 16/10/2022 10:20

dumbstruckdumptruck · 16/10/2022 09:10

This will probably really annoy you, so I apologise in advance, but this made me want to give you a massive hug.

Yeh that would. I think it’s because I was a young carer and basically completely independent from 13-15 then I landed in care and lost every bit of my autonomy till I was sixteen. I had to spend time in a halfway house proving I could live independently before they gave me a council flat so suppose I’d see needing another adult as weakness.

It’s a hard transition going from running your own life and someone else’s, managing the house and the bills and the medical stuff to being told where you can go, who you can see and when.

EmmaH2022 · 16/10/2022 10:28

Oysterbabe · 16/10/2022 09:26

DH and I are in our 40s and will both still call our parents for advice on situations.

I just can't fathom that. I am not sure if it means I missed out or what.

Buttonmoonmrspoon · 16/10/2022 10:31

Thank goodness I’m not the only one! I’m actually very independent in terms of managing the house (better than my partner!) and am more capable than a lot of people I know in many ways. But I still want a more adult adult sometimes!

To those of you who no longer have parents they used to call on, or those who feel that they had to adult too soon, or those having to adult on sad, scary situations… big hugs to you all. Although it must be difficult at times, stepping up and having to do it all yourself shows real strength.

OP posts:
Toddlerteaplease · 16/10/2022 10:36

Yes. I find this at work, then realise that I'm actually more experienced than anyone one else on my ward and the one next door. V bizarre when people ask me something because 'oh Toddler, will know the answer' 🤔

MapReader · 16/10/2022 10:46

Absolutely! 40 and I do majority of the life admin and planning and organising. It's hard work being responsible and sensible. I need my oh to be adultier sometimes.

EmmaH2022 · 16/10/2022 10:46

I'm actually thinking of doing no housework today. I seem to do it on a Sunday and mess it all up by the following Sunday. It's like after 28+ years of adulting, I can't do it any more.

Dillwyninthebath · 16/10/2022 10:53

@wtfisgoingonhere21 Thanks. Your family sound so lovely. 😊

dumbstruckdumptruck · 16/10/2022 11:20

@HighlandPony I bet it was. Swinging from one massive extreme to another must have been so hard – and it makes perfect sense why it feels so important to be totally independent.

For different reasons, I have a similar 'survival strategy' of independence (based on "don't ever 'need' anyone because they will ALWAYS let you down").

I've been working recently on finding the middle ground – not codependent and reliant on others, but also not totally independent and alone. Instead, how can I be healthily interdependent, and allow people to support me / carry some of the weight, without losing my sense of autonomy?

I'm not great at it yet, but allowing people in a little bit was quite the relief. I didn't know how much I was missing it until I felt it.

So the hug still stands, annoying or not 😉

zingally · 16/10/2022 12:20

Oh, all the time!

Last year, my car broke down in Tesco car park. My first instinct was to call my mum! But considering she lives 2 hours away, what help was she going to be?!

SaintDominic · 16/10/2022 16:51

My mum died of cancer when I was 13, my dad was bi-polar and so our parenting stopped then. His illness (or personality) meant he focused his negativity on me and locked me out of the house at 16. I was under the care of the local authority until 18 but living alone in student accommodation from 16 onwards. My dad died of a heart attack when I was 19. For whatever reason (probably my dad’s behavior to them) what extended family we had were never there for me or my brother.

I am now a married mother of 3 young adults/teen and to this day wish there was someone I could call to ask about so many things, or even just give me the emotional support I need. My husband is great but can never replace an older generation that has been missing since I was a teen. Knowing my family turn to me and see me as the adult (which I of course, am) has meant I have absorbed a lot of trauma and emotion which I don’t want them to be affected by and am as a result pretty stoic.

There is no worse feeling than not knowing where you will be at Christmas until you have your own family as there is no parental home to go to.

Gingernan · 12/04/2023 05:50

I'm 73 and have always looked after myself,mum died when I was 11 and I was widowed young. Sorted out my college, all main decisions. It takes its toll though.
I get quite overloaded.During lockdown,furlough from my pt job I took up new interests,but forgot how to cook.I can't do it.My adult daughter lives with me, she still tends to leave that to me. We do,basically need Meals on Wheels as we used to call the service for the housebound and elderly. I'm incapable and need an adult but unfortunately am the oldest person I know.
The garden is too much work and I'm not rich enough to get a gardener. I think if I had been less independent I might have collected a band of helpers.

MrsTerryPratchett · 12/04/2023 06:12

No. I'm the adult in most situations. I have the kind of job where, like today, I had two people already at my desk asking me to adult, when a colleague ran up and said, "the police are here". Well Police are always me. I'm the person adults look at to adult.

In my RL I'm less adulty. However, it leaks out. Like if someone collapses or an emergency happens, I think it's my job.

Thanks goodness at home I act like a child and DD who is 12 sighs, rolls her eyes and tells me she's the adult. Interestingly I think my granny and mum were both the adults too. Maybe it's genetic.


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WandaWonder · 12/04/2023 06:19

I opened the fridge and something feel put onto the floor. I yelped and dh and our teenager came to find out what was going on

Dh and I looked at each both thinking where are parents are, our teenager had it all worked out

So in short yeah all the time!

Smartstuffed · 12/04/2023 16:29

I'm mostly 'adult' at work, but in my personal life I hover around the 23-25 mark most days except when I have to put myself into adult mode to get life admin done. My sister, the youngest in the family, has always been sensible.

The day her car broke down when we were heading out for a day of serious shopping was a turning point. We were in our early 20s and quite some way from home. She'd moved out by this time and was engaged and independent. My immediate and knee-jerk reaction, when we realised we were going nowhere, was to say. "There's a phone box over there, let's phone Dad." She turned to me and said in a tone which was simultaneously, slightly withering, pitying and exasperated, "Smartstuffed, we don't all phone Dad everytime we have a problem!" That was news to me - We don't??

Ever since then when I have a problem or dilemma I think 'What would "sister" do?' It's a helpful mantra.

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