As I am faced with my daughter having just turned 18, I embarked on a little journey. Of course I know that turning 18 years old is a huge milestone! Kids no longer need parental permission for a variety of "first-time" experiences. Technically when someone turns 18 they are legally responsible for their own decisions. You are considered an adult out in the world. But what can my baby girl do now that she couldn't do a few days ago?
Take note that I originally planned for this list to reflect the 18 things you can do when you turn 18. In doing a little research, however, I now realize that there is much more than just 18!
I have said the same phrase to my daughter so often that I must seem like a broken record. "Make good choices" is that phrase and my daughter has heard it quite possibly ten thousand times. I literally use it as if it were a personal mantra. I have said it over and over throughout my daughter's entire life but especially since she has been able to drive by herself.
So today, as my daughter is older, hopefully wiser and definitely craving adult-like adventures, here are 30 one-of-a-kind experiences that she now gets to take part in.
- She no longer requires a guardian should something ever happened my husband or I (even if she probably still needs one).
- She can vote even though she likely does not understand how it all works.
- She can drink legally in Canada and Europe; I am fully aware that the age restriction hasn't stopped her before.
- Many car rental businesses would let her rent a car on her own.
- She can buy cigarettes.
- She can buy lottery tickets.
- She can get a tattoo without her parent's consent.
- She can get her own department store credit card as well as various other credit cards.
- She can sign for all of my UPS or FedEx deliveries except alcohol.
- She can sign up for her own cell phone. Not sure She will want this option though since it's so expensive!
- Technically running away it's not running away anymore.
- If she ever got arrested for something now, she will be viewed as an adult and have adult consequences.
- Some hotels will let her book a room.
- She can get an airline ticket on her own.
- She still doesn't want to listen to her parents and all of our wisdom.
- She talks about how great it will be not to live with us anymore.
- She can rent or lease her own apartment.
- She can donate blood if she wants.
- She can get into most clubs (legally) now.
- She can skydive for the first time without a parent's consent.
- She can become a bartender and serve alcohol.
- She can gamble in a casino.
- She can open a bank account.
- She can enlist in the armed forces.
- She can buy fireworks.
- She can secure a bank loan.
- She can legally engage in sexual activity. (No comment for this one).
- She can buy a pet.
- She can get her own gym membership.
- She can pierce whatever she wants.
Being a child is the easy part; parents take care of absolutely everything when they are young. Turning 18 is a whole new world for most kids, including my daughter. She sees this time as a "coming of age" of sorts. I wish somebody told me about all of the rare first-time opportunities when I was that age (oh so long ago).
"Make good choices, sweet girl."