For many people it may remain a puzzle throughout their lifetime but Australian researchers feel the traditional belief of many individuals viewing age 21 to be the cusp of adulthood may not be true anymore.
According to a study conducted by researchers at Melbourne's Brotherhood of St. Laurence charity, no longer is the age of 21 regarded as the end of childhood, as they found most of the young people regarding the 30th birthday as the changeover year.
The landmark 21st year is now seen as a time to have a great party before keeping the fun going for at least the next nine years.
The study, carried out from the time babies were born in two Melbourne suburbs in 1990, found that only 38 percent of them believed they had reached maturity by the age of 21.
Another 13 percent said they were not adults when their 21st birthday came around. The remaining 49 percent could not decide.
Some of the young people were keen on adulthood, their independence and maturity, while others admitted they were not ready when their 21st year arrived, according to Janet Taylor, a senior researcher with the charity.
"For some, the fact they were earning independent money and making their own decisions made them feel adult and for some they liked that they didn't have to take adult responsibilities yet," she told Herald-Sun.
The research, which followed the group of growing children every seven years, was presented to the Australian Institute of Family Studies conference.
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