Savanna Christensen

Let’s admit it: Money, expenses and the economy can be difficult to understand at times.

My purpose in writing this is to help open the eyes of 16- and 17-year-olds and ages up. Although economic- and money-related issues are troubling for everyone, there are slight differences among the older and younger generations.

I often tend to hear from older generations.

For example, in 1970, gas prices averaged 36 cents per gallon. You could also buy a house for $26,000, and the average life expectancy was about 70 years.

In many respects, the ways of living now are not even close to how they were back then. Businesses have changed, and our population has grown.

Money is like a game: You have to play it right to win.

Learning how to hold down a job and save money is a gateway into an easier life. When you reach the age of independence, that’s when you should remember what you need to do to thrive and succeed in life. It’s now the beginning of your adulthood and you will need to get a job and start saving money to feel content with all the spending you’re going to have to do.

As an adult in the 1970s or early 1980s, as soon as you graduated, it was the norm to go out and get an education that paid the bills, and you found a mate and settled down. The path to adulthood since the end of World War II was short and to the point.

Although this was the normal way of living, not everyone lived that way, and of course, the number of young adults staying at home increased as the years went by.

Many kids grew more and more comfortable with staying at home with mom and dad until they were practically forced to go out on their own. Also, as technology was becoming a big deal, people found it was easier to deal with life through their screens rather than dealing with the world on a personal level.

What made most adults realize back then that they were truly adults was the sense of being responsible for their child and having to come up with the money to pay for their needs. Nowadays, the realization that you are an adult comes when you can post on Facebook that you got your first beer. Also, instead of coming home and knowing how to pay bills and learning to take care of yourself, most people are trying to find a quick way to pay their iPhone bills.

The world is no longer balanced these days.

It’s normal to care more about what others see you own instead of making sure you can afford to pay for all you’re showing off.

How are we supposed to run the world when our generation’s turn comes, when most of us these days are having mom and dad buy us all of our things, and all we know how to do is to sit around and look for the next Facebook post, party or hear the latest gossip?

We’ve become more and more dependent on technology and others to help or entertain us.

Today, if you tell a young person to be an adult who must live on their own, make their own money, have a spouse, a kid and a house, you’ll get a look of disbelief and a head shake. They’ll say, “Well, I don’t want to be an adult, then.”

However, we can’t go back to the older generations’ days because our technology and our ways of doing things have evolved.

We have the right to enjoy the new ways of communicating and how the world has advanced, but when it comes to becoming lazy with our lives and expecting someone to support and baby us, then we need to find a balance.

Savanna Christensen is a Grand County High School student and a Moab Sun News intern.