What would you consider as being behind in life? - Social Anxiety Forum
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post #1 of 44 (permalink) Old 09-02-2020, 07:56 PM Thread Starter
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What would you consider as being behind in life?

What are things everyone should do by a certain age? I know ultimately there’s no such checklist in real life, but I’m just curious about what’s your personal opinion.
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post #2 of 44 (permalink) Old 09-02-2020, 08:47 PM
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Professionally I should be at the management or analyst level, and with a master's degree in progress. Personally, a fiancé or husband, plus a starter home (or about to purchase).

I'm 28F. I have none of these things in the works and probably won't for another 5+ years... except the degree (I don't even have an undergrad).
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post #3 of 44 (permalink) Old 09-02-2020, 09:14 PM
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my opinion can only be that there isnt any behind. different people do different things and have different goals.

because otherwise I would say morally behind, which is the opposite of what people generally say is behind. but I do agree that those other ways of being ahead are kind of desirable too. so anything goes? just whatever you have in mind as being behind/ahead at the time, which can vary pretty wildly from moment to moment.

I alone cannot change the world, but I can cast a stone across the waters to create many ripples. ― Mother Teresa
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post #4 of 44 (permalink) Old 09-03-2020, 01:52 AM
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You're behind if you're at the point where it's too late, late enough where it will obstruct you from ever reaching your goals, or reach enough at least be content, or to at least thrive.

What goes up, will inevitably come back down. Whoever you have to step on when you go up, you will be at their mercy when you go down.

The truth is strictly what the ones in power perceives it to be.

Enjoy any good things, even the little and menial ones, as you will never know what impending distresses could descend upon you in a moment.
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post #5 of 44 (permalink) Old 09-03-2020, 10:27 PM
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I come from a family full of people who have completely failed to function as normal members of society. From the standpoint of cultural stereotypes, I am a complete failure. From the standpoint of my family, I'm doing about as well or badly as the rest of my siblings. It's hard for me to take normative standards very seriously when I see how easy it is for people to fail to achieve them. Half of all the people in the world are below average.

Imo, the one thing everyone should do is be kind to themselves, and be kind to other people. Everything else is an accident.

Beauty isn't everything. It's the only thing.
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post #6 of 44 (permalink) Old 09-04-2020, 04:07 AM
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As long as you're enjoying yourself, and not sabotaging your future enjoyment, that's what matters. Not a single one of us was asked for permission to be brought into existence, so you owe nothing to anyone just for existing. Not children, not a career, not anything. Take what you can get and then GTFO before old age sets in with all the associated health problems. I don't blame anyone for living their life this way if they have the option.
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post #7 of 44 (permalink) Old 09-04-2020, 07:26 AM
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It depends on your goals. I'm definitely behind.

believe in urself
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post #8 of 44 (permalink) Old 09-04-2020, 08:07 AM
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I don't consider anything behind.
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post #9 of 44 (permalink) Old 09-04-2020, 08:46 AM
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When you aren't in a place you think you should be, given your own values, and taking into account your own problems, the things outside your control that have affected you, and the options available to you.

This implicitly relies on actually identifying your values, spending a lot of time thinking about your life, understanding how factors outside your control have shaped things, and where you realistically think you should be. If you aren't there, you then very carefully and kindly consider what it is that's stopping you, what you can do to get there, and reasonably do your best to move forwards (taking into account your issues).

If you want someone to say "you should have lost your virginity by age blah blah" or "you should have your own house by blah blah" zero chance I would do this, because I have no clue what anyone else's life has been like.

I don't even know if someone else has the value of "must achieve milestones", so how could I tell them they must have done something. If someone has the value of purposefully not achieving socially acceptable goals, they can be way ahead, and that's fine. Other peoples values and goals not my concern.

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post #10 of 44 (permalink) Old 09-04-2020, 09:07 AM
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Im behind job wise I would say. Im in my early 40's. Have a ok job but I should be far further along then I am now
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post #11 of 44 (permalink) Old 09-05-2020, 02:07 AM
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Life is a race so yeah
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post #12 of 44 (permalink) Old 09-05-2020, 02:48 AM
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Originally Posted by Crusader. View Post
Life is a race so yeah
Well if it is, I'm so far behind I decided to just stop & have a picnic
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post #13 of 44 (permalink) Old 09-06-2020, 11:49 AM
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I have no idea what people should be doing by the time they are a certain age as I don't have a checklist for life to be honest.
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post #14 of 44 (permalink) Old 09-06-2020, 12:42 PM
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This is different cause it's based on social ideologies. 100 years ago the expectations for say teenagers were much different than what we see these days. And this varies by culture and country as well.

I think whether you're behind or ahead really depends on your own personal goals and where you would want to be in life. In the end, you have to live your life for YOU not anyone else.

In my life I've reached several of my goals but I still consider myself behind in other social aspects cause of my SA.
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post #15 of 44 (permalink) Old 09-08-2020, 02:48 AM
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When most people you encounter talk about how contemptuous and disgusting people like you are. Not sure 'behind' is the right word because that's nonsensical and seems to require delusions of grandeur about Humans, but what you mean is 'how do you know when you are low status in a group/society' and that's how.

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post #16 of 44 (permalink) Old 09-08-2020, 05:04 AM
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I think there are certainly things most people would agree it's fairly reasonable to have done by a certain time in your life. Having your first gf or bf etc, leaving home, getting married (maybe) - although obviously not necessarily what everyone wants to do, having kids, settling down.

I'm very glad my son went to Uni at the "normal" time - as opposed to when I managed to go. I'm glad he's had girlfriends, he can earn a good wage in his 20's. If he hadn't been able to do those things I would have just been worried about him - it obviously wouldn't change the way I feel about him. It just means his life is fuller and he can fit in - so to speak.

As I mentioned in the post I deleted before - it's all a bit silly talking about these things on a forum full of people that have found doing many of these things quite difficult. (me included)
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post #17 of 44 (permalink) Old 09-27-2020, 06:35 PM
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I work at a call center at 30 and trapped as a caregiver for my mom at home. Ive achieved none of my goals that Ive had since I was 18. Nocar, no apartment, no friends, no signifucant other, no career, no money. No other family. My dad died 4 years ago. Im stuck in the house Ive lived in since I was 10. Im despetate to move out but I make minimum wage. So yeah.. Im behind. &#x1f615; I feel trapped in my suffocated life. financially, and by my mothers dementia.

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post #18 of 44 (permalink) Old 09-30-2020, 03:31 AM
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Without getting into my problems which are listed in other topics, my rant would be this. I think in the United States in the 50's you were expected to get married at a very young age, the wife was the home-maker etc, raised the kids. In the 60's it was free love and hippies and that nonsense. Now i think women have more job opportunities and money than ever before. The after-effects of that, is that dating is completely weird now. Women depend on men less than ever for money or resources or companionship. The problem as a guy i think is that the roles are now reversed and women are "using" guys, as opposed to the other way around. The stereotype of men as users today could not be less far-fetched. My point is that I don't think many people today, men or women, want the white picket fence anymore. There is less traditional ways of thinking now than ever. You can make 10 million dollars a year as a gamer (video games) and you could also make 10 million a year with a Youtube channel if you can get enough followers and someone can advertise during your videos. So I think what people want now is more open-ended than ever. I still think that without a career or money or confidence or friends and connections, without most of those things, you are kinda nowhere. There are so many bizarre professions now that you can make money with, especially online, that everything is all over the place. If you tell a woman you are dating that you make a lot of money online in an unorthodox profession, I doubt she would care what it was, as long as you could provide a decent life. On the other hand, like I said, many women are so self-sufficient now that men feel emasculated and self-conscious if a woman earns more than they do. I think way less women want to have kids now than ever, and way less women want to get married. It mostly has to do with money, because women now more than ever can afford their own cars, home, vacations. If a woman wants to have fun with her friends and hang out and drink, it is too easy today to have a fling with a guy here and there and then ditch them, as opposed to starting a relationship. Relationships are dying out, kinda like the dinosaur. i think there are way more sensitive men who want relationships now that fall under the radar, where women today see men as disposable, or fun for a short period of time, and then back to their own freedom of hanging with the girls. To sum up, i think that yes, a career that pays well is crucial, not just for money but for a person's identity. I don't think marriage and kids is as big a factor now in what people want for themselves. Nobody stays together anymore, where decades ago you would get married and it stood a chance to last a lifetime. i think as a guy or girl, if you are not married today, it is less of a red flag than ever before, but if you don't have a decent job or life experience on some level, you are still basically lost
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post #19 of 44 (permalink) Old 09-30-2020, 04:32 AM
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We all have our unique circumstances so there is no objective behind in life. It can be difficult to believe this as there are strong social norms at play that can convince us otherwise when we don't have a strong sense of self.

Society loves to pretend everyone's on a level playing field. People more readily accept this isn't the case in terms of a family's wealth or connections (being born on third base.) But few acknowledge invisible wounds such as mental health, which make life akin to running a marathon with a broken leg. We have to validate our experience because it's just as valid as everyone else's.

It'll take a lot of psycho education for many to believe that. Without understanding trauma, attachment developmental stages, human needs, etc., it's easy to assume you're just the same as everyone else but somehow defective and unable to just 'be normal.' That is NEVER the case. If you're struggling there's almost always a fairly simple conceptualization as to why in psych terms. But doing the work of healing and working through it - man it can be a ****ing journey.

So there is no behind. Someone who knows nothing about me may decide I'm behind. But they're just someone who knows nothing about my actual life experiences who's literally making **** up. Assuming tons of **** they know nothing about. In terms of my actual life and experiences- I'm killing it. Honestly, the fact that I'm here and alive and still moving forward is enough for me. Everything else I'm doing is extra. I'm the expert on me. Nobody else.

Working alongside a competent therapist can help you make sense of your struggles in light of your experiences. Try to be kind to yourself. You deserve it.
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post #20 of 44 (permalink) Old 09-30-2020, 06:55 AM
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I'm surprised so many people still buy into this milestone thing. Sometimes I watch First Dates on Channel 4 and so many of the people there have it all mapped out: 'so when I am 30 I want to have a husband, a house and a child'. It just feels very...dated?

Like many people who commented here, I don't believe in being 'behind' as a concept. Although I do believe in being stuck. Being stuck is bad and it's best to get unstuck as soon as you can.

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