Adulting and Responsibility

Adulting and Responsibility
©Tim Gouw 2016

If there’s anything 2016 is going to be known for it could be the idea that being an adult shouldn’t be so annoying, dull and a drag. As Millenials grow up, we realize that there’s a lot of lessons we wish public school taught us before we became adults in the 2010’s. I had to learn the hard way about getting my own apartment, marriage, signing and making a check, what a lease or mortgage was. I didn’t know what credit was or how the government or the economy worked.

I absolutely had no idea on how to start a business and today have no clue on how to be a parent. Who’s supposed to teach me this stuff? If the responsibility was my parents I come from a divorced family and so the struggle was real in my home.

I believe my mom was to worried on feeding me than to take the time to teach me these things. She may have had no idea on how these things worked herself.

I don’t blame anyone but I do now know about all these things and hope to spread some valuable lessons to many youths who are as lost as I was on becoming an adult in 2016.


I suggest learning about money as soon as possible. Having knowledge on how credit works is helpful because when the time comes to lease a car or get a loan or mortgage for your first home your credit needs to be on point. By on pint I mean a score of 700 or more is wonderful.

If you have no idea what credit is it’s pretty much a scale of how trustworthy you are with money. If you pay people, businesses or loaners off on time and quickly your score will stay high which will let you be able to take out bigger and longer loans.


So, no one told me that to get a house you either have to buy it at full price or take out a loan. Most people take out a loan with a bank to pay for their house which is called a mortgage loan or mortgage for short.

This is a pretty simple idea, but you need pretty good credit to take out a mortgage. You also must understand that if your mortgage is 15 years long and at 8 years you can’t pay any more of the mortgage you forfeit the house and the money you paid off to the bank. Taking out a mortgage is serious business and you have to pay off the whole mortgage loan before you can call the house yours.


I was never fond of giving my money away to a stranger and having them hold it for me in a giant building or safe and hoping it’ll still be there whenever I need it. This is what a bank does. Banks store money from it’s account holders. Banks may also borrow your money and pay you interest for using your money and returning it.

Having a checking and saving account is useful but when you’re holding millions or billions of dollars it can be dangerous to leave your money in a bank.

You may choose to leave what’s necessary for you in the bank and purchase a safe for yourself to hold your money close to you.


This is a simple lesson thankfully. We’ve seen checks. Checks are a method of payment that are not as popular as they once were. When you write a check you’re pretty much giving up a paper credit card for a specific amount to the person you’re purchasing something from. Today, I use checks mostly to set up direct deposit for a new job or to pay someone money without having to transfer over email.


Usually, when you leave the nest you don’t get a house right away. Don’t get me wrong some couples do go out and do that and other people or couples choose to get an apartment first. Apartments are usually in an apartment building that is owned by one person, partners or a group of people. These people own the apartments and rent them out to people who meet their requirements.

Requirements for getting approved for an apartment can be having good credit, viable and enough income to support you and pay rent and utilities, and having 2 people in each room you’re renting. Landlord’s usually let slide a 1 bedroom apartment for 2 people and maybe a child.

Some landlords allow pets and some pay all utilities while others don’t. My first apartment was with my husband in the city of our hometown. We had a one-bedroom and it was great. We stayed there a year and 3 months until we got robbed in the summer and decided to move out.

When searching for apartments consider the location. An area with high theft can mean you’re able to be robbed. Not only that you may need to look into renter’s insurance. It will cover any losses or damage caused to your apartment that is not by your own doing. It’s cheap and valuable.


Wherever you live in the United States there are officials and lawmakers who are creating laws and enforcing laws. Now that you’re your own person and can make your own decisions legally (18-year-olds and older) you can now take part in what happens in your community. Unfortunately, a lot of people let anything happen and live their lives ignoring the fact that there are people are making decisions about how much you pay in taxes or what happens to your local schools and libraries without their input.

It’s now your responsibility to vote and to take part in what happens around you. Registering to vote is easy especially with websites like and libraries with free internet.


I hope I can explain this right. I’m going to simplify the way the economy works. So, I’m talking about the United States economy, which is the economy of our government. It’s pretty much how good we are at making money. The government makes money in a couple ways but mostly in taxes and fines. The government taxes clothing, gas, land, and your work. If you want to make or spend money in the United States you will be taxed for it.

The United States makes income through the taxes we pay for but the only way we can pay our taxes is if Americans are working. This means that Americans must have jobs, or must be creating jobs. When jobs are low, fewer taxes get paid. Which means the less money the United States makes which in turn slows down or economy.

This is why it is a big deal for the President to add jobs to our economy. This is important to you because if you want to be successful in anything that you do, the United States must be successful. If the economy slows down, and there are fewer businesses hiring there will be fewer people making money. The fewer people making money the fewer people will buy from other business and in turn will mean there are fewer taxes for the United States.

If you’re not a valuable employee you can be laid off, if you’re not paying attention to the economy you ay have to lay off employees or you may lose your business. For example, if I got fired I will not be shopping for clothes at the mall for a long time. In turn, the mall loses money because I’m not buying clothes and the United States loses money because I’m not paying a clothing tax and I’m not making any money to pay my taxes.

If this cycle isn’t stopped the United States will crash. Luckily, this only happened once in the 1930’s and we call it the Great Depression today.

Adulting is overrated. I know I’m going to make mistakes while learning all these things but it doesn’t mean that I can’t enjoy myself while I advance into adulthood. I remember when I got my license and locked myself out of my can during the day and at night I got a ticket for parking in a handicap spot on my block.

That’s what growing up is about. Learning from mistakes and sharing these things with other people so that they hopefully don’t make the same mistakes you did. I hope this makes sense to everyone because it sure as didn’t for me until it was too late.

1 Comment

  1. Tonie Papagni
    August 12, 2016

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