Until You're On Your Own, You Don't Know What Freedom Is
First of all, don't look at your parents boring lives and assume that being an adult means living according to their template. No, you don't have to ditch the video games and take up a "grown up" hobby like golf if you don't feel like it. See, once you're an adult, you get to decide.
Want to stay up until 4 a.m. on a Wednesday? Go for it. Want to eat straight whipped cream right out of the container? Have at it. Adulthood is being able to get into your car at 2 a.m. and just drive for no reason at all. It's growing past being dragged to Mom's church every Sunday and being able to decide for yourself what you want to believe. It's eating pie for supper. It's choosing your own friends and buying your own clothes. It's sitting three feet from the TV screen, just because you fucking can. It's watching a movie for no other reason than it has a lesbian sex scene with Natalie Portman.
The first month on my own looked exactly like this.
That's not to say that there are no repercussions for doing those things, but by God this is your life now, and you have the right to learn those lessons in any way you choose. You own those repercussions. They're yours, no one can take them from you.
For instance, almost everyone I've ever met -- and I've lived in six major cities in the United States -- complains that they "have to get out of this shitty town." I heard it in small-town Illinois, I heard it in Los Angeles, I heard it in Minneapolis. There are like two dozen hit rock songs from the 80s on that subject. Well, as an adult, you have every right and every opportunity to make that happen. You might fuck it up and wind up living in your car, but it was your doing. That freedom is the most powerful tool you'll ever own, and it's exactly what enables you to continue growing. And you will grow.
I reiterate, there are exceptions.
Yes, you'll have problems. But they'll be your problems. And besides, what would you do without them? The problems are what get you out of bed in the morning. They're what makes succeeding at things such a goddamned rush. You can't be a dragon slayer without dragons.
You can't be Stone Cold Steve Austin without a Vince McMahon to shave.
People talk about a "real world" after graduation, as if that's when the "real" stress starts. And in some ways, they're right. But nothing takes away from the feeling of being at the wheel, doing things on your own terms. Besides, there's something you should know about the "real world" ...
The World isn't as Bad as You Think
When you're a kid, your parents shelter you from the worst of what's really going on in the world. As you get older, your worldview changes and expands. You start to think outside of your own town and social circle. You'll see a metric fuckload of bad news. Violence, government scandals, wars over seemingly petty bullshit. At some point (maybe later in high school but most seem to save it for the college years) you'll get cynical. "Why should I live in this world when it's so shitty?" Or later, "How can I bring a child into this living hell?"
We forget that what is happening now is the opposite of what your parents did. They sheltered you from bad news, but the news media shelters you from good news. They literally filter it out; among all of this horrible information coming out of the nightly news, there is so much good that goes unreported because it doesn't get the same ratings.
But as for the bad shit, there has to come a point where you realize the same thing I've touched on over and over again in this article: As an adult, you are now part of the world and you do have some power to change it. As a kid, you didn't have the power to change shit.
The reason you need to live in a world with all of this shitty news is because that world needs you to help fix it. The reason you can bring a child into this life is because when you pass on your morals and beliefs to them, that's one more soldier on the field to fight for the good side.
Plus, conceiving a child means that you get to do some dirty, filthy fucking.
Chances are you're not going to show up and disarm a bomb at the last second on a plane filled with a hundred innocent people. But you can absolutely donate some trivial amount of money to make sure some farmer in some oppressed country can get medicine to his family so that they can help him harvest the crops that will in turn feed entire villages.
Life gets better because you're going to make it better. Because you'll have the power and the freedom to make it better.
It's incredibly difficult for a teenager in the throes of angst or a college kid knee-deep in debt and stress to see any of that. Depression is like that. It shrinks your view of the world, it chokes off the horizon. You feel like you're being tea-bagged by life -- its hairy ass cheeks planted firmly over your eyes so you can't see anything else.
Don't mistake those ass cheeks for the whole world. The world is actually out there, beyond that ass, and time and effort will make that clear. You have to survive it first though. I promise you, it gets better.
For more Cheese, check out The 4 Most Important Things to Know as a Gamer Parent and 12 Things You'll Wish You'd Never Seen Under a Microscope.