It’s crazy to think that in just a few short months I will be 21. I don’t know why it is, but no matter how old I get I will always be my angsty sixteen-year-old self. Upon reminiscing the other day, I found myself thinking deep about one event that occurred much too often in my years of teenagedom (and I’m sure has happened to many others). I fondly remember finding solace in the one place I felt safe, the one place I didn’t have to deal with “idiots”, where I was able to creatively express myself without feeling scrutinized by other’s glances and most importantly, had my privacy. My room. I grew up and discovered myself in that bedroom. Now, I’m aware of how exaggerated that sounds, but we’ve all, in one way or another, have done the same thing. One issue this particular trip down memory lane brought was this: why was I given so much flack from my parents and siblings for seeking refuge in my room?
After having a bad day at school or at home, I would always run to my room. Where else was I supposed to go? My room was my place of sanity. I’m not the only teenager to have ever done this, of course. But time and time again, society stereotypically (and negatively) attributes these actions to teenage girls. We’re constantly being berated with people saying that it’s us being “dramatic” and that told to “get out” of our rooms. Why? Why is it when we’re trying to console ourselves within an environment we created to bring us comfort and joy, we’re told it’s the wrong thing to do and that it is immature? As this forum response on the topic states“…take into consideration that your teen may just want to shut out the noise of the day for a little while, get some privacy and relax in their own world”. In my opinion, it’s the most mature aspect of growing up! I can attest to this now as “technically” an adult. And by adult I mean someone who now has bills to pay, working full time and going to college. I have days that are mentally exhausting, days where I could seriously punch the next person to get on my bad side. The smartest thing to do in days like those? Stop what you’re doing, take a mini mental health break and go to your happy place. It’s the only way to keep going!
It’s thanks to all those days locked in my room that I know this is what works for me. Sure, it’s not my room I run to now, but the maturity of acknowledging when too much is too much and then taking actions to prevent anything that will jeopardize productivity is imperative in this high stress and busy world we’re in. It’s not benefiting anyone by telling a teenager that doing so is a negative. If anything, it’s derailing their journey to self-discovery, creativity, and maturity. We all need days where we lock ourselves in our rooms, blast our favorite album, and forget the world for five minutes.