No One Likes You When You're 23: 7 Struggles Of No Longer Feeling 22

by Erica Haye

It basically goes like this:

“You’re only 22! You’re still so young — don’t worry about anything yet!”

“You’re going to be 23?” Suddenly eyebrows are raised and everything.

It may only be the difference of one year, but as we all know, a lot can happen in a year.

You grow up and move on, discover new things, forget the old ones and continue the daily struggle/celebration of being alive.

But, during your 23rd year, the struggles get a bit more serious and the celebrations get a bit less fun.

It’s the transformation from not voting or truly caring for the presidential elections to buying The New York Times on your way home from the grocery store.

It’s the difference between being excited to stay in and watch movies, but dreading having to go out for your friend’s birthday at the club.

When you ring in your 23rd birthday, you may feel a ping of disappointment that your young, carefree days are over.

It’s okay to feel a bit depressed for a minute; I mean, after all, Taylor Swift didn't write a song about feeling 23.

Here's what happens when you're 23 (when no one likes you):

Even saying the number gives you anxiety.

When you’re 22 and someone inquires about your age, you’re more than eager to shout “22,” along with a proud, sly smile.

Why the sly smile? Because you know everyone who isn’t 22 wishes he or she were.

When you’re 23 and someone inquires about your age, you become a lot less eager and a bit more hesitant.

Your answer will probably sound more like, “Twenty… three.” I guess it’s time to get used to it — you’ll probably being doing the hesitation bit for the rest of your life.

You’re the maid of honor in your best friend’s wedding.

When you’re turning 22, marriage and planning the dream wedding still seems like faraway adventures.

You and your girlfriends are still meeting up and spilling the secrets of the random hookups you have.

There’s not a guy in your you would actually consider marrying, but at 23, those “wedding inspiration” Pinterest boards stop being premature and become very, very real.

Your best friend gets engaged, and you spend her 23rd birthday weekend trying on bridal dresses.

You suddenly have the most amazing guy in your life as well, and you couldn't be happier to not have to go on anymore first dates.

So, instead of spending your birthday night at the club with a bottle of Patron to the face, you spend it at a quiet, romantic restaurant with your long-term boyfriend.

You no longer have the luxury of being a “college student.”

“What do you do?” “Oh, I’m in college.” Answering this question when you’re 22 is so easy, and makes you sound intelligent.

Your future is filled with anticipated success. You have nothing but positive thoughts and motivation to accomplish your dreams.

A year later, you've encountered more disappointments than you could have imagined.

You've graduated, so for the first time in your entire life, you are no longer allowed to call yourself a student.

Unless you’re super lucky or have some crazy connections, you've probably joined the rest of the recent college graduates in being unemployed.

When someone asks you what you do, your answer is more like this: “… I actually just graduated a few months ago, so I’m just looking for a real job now.”

You’ll continue to use this excuse for the next few months, too. The future isn’t as easy as you thought, and definitely doesn't have the same ring to it.

You've come to terms with having to move out of your parent's house.

When you’re 22, your parents hint about you moving out. You chuckle a bit to yourself, “I’m only 22!”

You’re so young, you still have forever until you actually even need to think about getting a place of your own.

And then, you turn 23 and the need to be independent is as apparent to you as it is to your parents.

You've either moved out already, or are in the process of moving out.

Twenty-three is the age to spread those wings, maybe move to a new city and sleep on the worst mattress in the entire world while barely making rent.

It’s no longer acceptable to be in the club every other night.

Being 22 is basically an extension to 21. You’re still kind of new to the whole legally drinking thing, except you've lost the annoying “21” act (hopefully), and now you kind of just go out to go out.

It’s still okay at 22 because like I said, you really were just 21. But if you’re 23 and routinely poppin’ bottles and spending all of your money on alcohol, it’s probably time you stop.

I mean really, please stop. It makes you look immature and irresponsible. It’s time to limit the clubbing to once or twice a week, at least.

You now truly understand the value of a dollar…. As well as how much debt you’re really in.

When you’re 22, constantly swiping your card is second nature. Spending $150 at Marshall’s only gives you anxiety for a split second.

It’s like a game of, "How much debt can I actually get myself in?"

Does it really matter when you’re dead anyway? You only live once, right? Buy the shoes.

A year later, when you’re turning 23, you have round-the-clock anxiety because of the mess your 22-year-old self got you in.

Paying off your cards and adding money to your savings account becomes more appealing than buying that new pair of heels you love. Being more responsible just comes with the age, I guess.

Social media becomes less social, and less relevant.

Twenty-two is literally all about having fun and showing the world just how much of it you’re having.

It’s the socially acceptable form of bragging. Post as many pictures of you laughing and drinking that you can.

The more likes you get, the cooler you are, obviously. Social media is your life. But, when you turn 23, it all fades away.

You realize that you don’t give a sh*t about more than half of your “friends” and you really don’t care if they know about your life.

You still post stuff, but you aren't constantly checking in to see how many people favorited it.

You decided to delete all of the irrelevant people: the “popular” kids you went to high school with, who actually aren't doing crap with their lives, the random college classmates you had to work on group projects with and the old coworkers that you never really liked.

It’s time to face that 23 is basically your transition period from your early 20s (aka “party time”) to your mid-20s (aka “get your sh*t together time”).

Soon enough, you'll be five years away from your 30s (aka “you better have your own goddamn job, car, house and some type of relationship time”).

But, if you think turning 23 is bad, just wait until you turn 24.