A beautiful photograph capturing loved ones swapping vows. A pride-filled announcement of a perfect baby born. An excited status about a first house bought. My Facebook timeline is filled with big life changing moments. I’m struggling to decide whether to get a fringe.
I feel like the world around me is moving at a pace I can’t keep up with and whilst so many of my friends are at the stage in their lives where they’re buying their first house, having a baby or planning a wedding, I’m sat here in my rented flat, with not a penny in my savings, never mind a deposit for a house, an empty womb and no-one in sight who even resembles Mr Right. I’m part of Generation Peter Pan. And you know what?
By the time your thirties come around, it’s almost expected of you that you’ll have a house, or at least be saving to get on the property ladder. You’re expected to know what you want from your career, no doubt have a long term partner, if not already married, and be thinking about kids. I mean, come on, your clock is ticking, right?
But what if you just want to enjoy the now? What if you want to travel and spend your hard earned money on nice holidays? What if you wasted your time on so many losers in your twenties that you’re quite content with your own company until Mr Right For You comes along?
There are so many pressures on our generation, and whilst your parents may have married in their early twenties and popped out two or three sprogs by the time they were your age, the pressure on them to have a successful career wasn’t the same back then. As a generation we work our arses off to achieve our dreams – and don’t we dream big. Nothing seem unattainable anymore, and I love that my friends and I believe we can do anything. I can say I absolutely worked my arse off over the past ten years to be where I want to be. I have a successful career in publishing, I continue to build this blog and feel like I have accomplished a lot of things career wise in my thirty years on earth. So why am I am still plagued with these questions on a weekly basis?
When are you going to get a boyfriend?
When are you going to buy a house, you can’t rent forever?
Do you want children?
The answer to all the above is, it would be great if you could just mind your own f&*king business.
First of all, I was in a relationship for a long time which didn’t go any where. It wasn’t even close to marriage. And on either side of that, I’ve managed to snag some real dicks. And not in the literal sense. So you’ll have to excuse me whilst I take a break from the meat market and enjoy being single. A single woman in her thirties? God forbid, she must have the plague. Alert the church elders at once, she must be burnt at the stake. I am me. Victoria. I do not need another human being to make me whole. When someone comes along who makes me laugh, treats me well and has nice arms (three specifics I’d like), then I’ll think about coming off the market. Until then, I’ll continue to enjoy myself – despite obviously having a body riddled with scales.
I rent because it’s extremely hard to save for a deposit on single income, plus I really like renting. When my boiler goes, I ring my landlord. If I want my bathroom painting, I ring my landlord. In Europe it’s unusual to buy somewhere – it’s a continent of renters – yet in the UK we seem intent on making getting on the property ladder one of our sole purposes in life. Maybe I want to spend the money I have on living for now. I’m not stupid, I have savings and I do want to own my place one day, but I’m not scrimping and saving to do so. It will happen when it happens.
The last question really bugs me. I find asking people if they’re going to have children one of the rudest questions a person can ask. My sister was told she would be unable to have children – although God worked his magic and now we have the amazing Matilda. But in those dark years where she was happily married yet struggled for the one thing they really wanted, to be asked by total strangers, when are you going to have children, she would struggle to answer in a civil manner. And FIY, I do want children. Yes, I understand that conception gets harder as we age, but I am thirty years old. I’m not a shrivelled up prune just yet. I think my obviously empty womb will be just fine for another five years yet.
My path might not be the same as my friends. Hell, my path has already taken me on some crazy detours, but it’s my path, with my mistakes to make and my memories to create. No-one else needs to worry about me growing up, I’ll do that in my own time. Here’s to Generation Peter Pan.