Eight Signs You're Officially A Grown-Up

By Molly DeFrank

Remember when you were a kid and all grown-ups everywhere a.) knew and were friends with each other; b.) had the answers to everything; c.) were OLD?

Guess what, suckers? That’s officially you now. Congratulations and welcome to the part of your life when “summer vacation” is just two cruel words reminding you of the kind of care-free fun you will never have again. Here are eight signs you might be a grown-up:

1. Getting your mail is depressing. 


Oh, what’s that, Highlights magazine? A birthday card and twenty bucks from Grandma? Nope. Just a jury summons and your $500 traffic ticket for running a red at an intersection that snaps an awful picture of your blurry face, adding insult to injury. “Say cheese! Now give us enough money for a plane ticket to Hawaii.”

2. You don’t recognize anyone on the cover of Tiger Beat/Teen Beat. 


I know what you’re thinking: “Whatever, I know who Justin Bieber is. I’m still hip.” To that I respond, where were you on Y2K? In high school? College? Did you know Justin Bieber was five years old? That’s right. Dude was in pre-k on Y2K. (If you just said to yourself, “Who is Justin Bieber?” I want to let you know about some excellent discounts for you here: www.aarp.org. )

3. A child guesses your age, and it’s over 8. 


My 3-year old daughter asked me if I was 14 the other day. At first I was flattered. Then I realized the highest number she knows is 30. She just figured I’m as old as half of the biggest number there is. The highest number I know is 10 gazillion. That’s like me assuming my mom is only 5 gazillion years old. Not a compliment.

4. You don’t feel like driving. 


Remember the sweet thrill of having your new drivers’ license and cruising to Taco Bell at 4pm on a Saturday to pick up a Mexican Pizza? Now do you play rock-paper-scissor with your spouse to see whose turn it is to get the takeout? Yep. Old.

5. You start to side with the parents of your old favorite Disney protagonists. 


Ariel, you’re 16 years old and you think you are in LOVE with a human you didn’t know before yesterday? Child, PLEASE. Nemo, your mom and siblings were brutally slain by a creepy eel, so can you please give your dad a break and obey him when he tells you to avoid danger? DO YOU HAVE A DEATH WISH?!

6. Pumpkin Spice Latte = the new Happy Meal. 


Remember when your mom would bribe you into behaving during errands with a little Mickey D’s? Does the idea of consuming a Happy Meal now totally gross you out (thanks for that, Michael Pollan), but you’ll giddily drive through Starbucks for a pumpkin-flavored stimulant? That’s adulthood. Welcome.

7. You have self-mandated dietary restrictions. 


Are you Paleo, Vegan, Gluten-free, Nut-free, taste-free, whatever? Adult. (Of the first-world variety.)

8. You’re shocked at the shows that come on Nick at Night. 


Full House? Friends?! What happened to Mork and Mindy and Mary Tyler Moore? I thought Nick at Nite only aired shows old people used to watch when they were in their prime. And then the harsh reality hits: Nick at Nite does air shows old people used to watch when they were in their prime…Let that sink in for a minute. Bummer.

Guest blogger Molly DeFrank is a former press aide to Governor Schwarzenegger turned stay-at-home mom of three kids under four. She lives in Fresno, California, where she pretends to still be young and hip.

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