Under 30s Are Living In “Suspended Adulthood”

Photographed by Alexandra Gavillet.
Under 30s in Britain are living in a state of "suspended adulthood", with many women in particular feeling worn down, lacking self-confidence and worrying about the future. According to a new report by charity the Young Women's Trust, based on responses from thousands of British 18 to 30-year-olds, low pay and a lack of work are largely to blame. This economic climate is prohibiting them from flying the nest, with many living with their parents (43%), moving back in with their parents after a period away (24%), and postponing having children (48%). Their situations are also affecting how they feel and how they see themselves, with women feeling notably worse about themselves, and more than half (51%) of all young people feeling worried about the future. A huge proportion of people said they feel worn down (42%), but there was a stark gender disparity with 46% of women feeling this way compared with 38% of men. Similarly, more women than men reported feeling a lack of self-confidence, with 54% saying this compared with 39% of men. More young women than men were also worried about their mental health, with 38% of women claiming this concerned them compared with 29% of men. The Young Women's Trust said the British government must do more to help a generation "in crisis", reported The Guardian. It recommended creating a new minister responsible for policy affecting young people. “Make no mistake about it, we’re talking about a generation of young people in crisis," said Dr Carole Easton, the chief executive of Young Women’s Trust. "And while life is hard for many young people, our survey shows it’s likely to be considerably tougher if you are a young woman,” she said. Adding that it's in no one's interests to "to write off an entire generation", Easton said "much more needs to be done to improve young people’s prospects", including an extension of the National Living Wage to under 25s, improving housing for young people and reducing workplace discrimination.

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