12 Lies Adults Always Tell Teenagers That You Shouldn’t Believe

Let’s be real for a second: if you’re a teenager, chances are, the adults in your life lie to you. A lot.

It’s not a malicious thing – your parents, teachers, and various other guardians lie to you because they think they’re helping you. The lies adults always tell teenagers are usually told in an attempt to keep teens on the right track; focusing on school, working hard, and training to be successful. Sometimes these lies are necessary. Would I have worked as hard as I did in school if I knew that grades, in the end, really don’t matter as much as you think? Probably not. But while I can see how these little white lies can be beneficial, I also think you all deserve to know the truth.

I’m not telling you this stuff to encourage you to disobey your parents or just do whatever you want. You should still listen to them, because, you know, without them you’d have a lot of trouble surviving. But you should also know certain things that will make your future easier and make you feel a little bit less pressure. Teenagers feel so much pressure all the time – and sometimes, it’s just not necessary. So, here are some lies adults always tell teens. Watch out for them!

Your Relationships Don't Mean Anything

How often have you heard an adult roll their eyes at the thought of teenagers being in love? It's not uncommon for older people to believe that teenagers can't experience real romantic love, or to think that teen relationships aren't lasting or important. I'm not sure why that is, but it's quite frustrating - and it's not true. Actually, the relationships you have as a teenager, platonic and romantic, can shape the way you have relationships for the rest of your life. Some might last forever, a lot won't - just like adult relationships.

When I was in high school, I was in a serious relationship for three years with a guy I thought I was going to marry. Whenever I said I loved him or that we would be together forever, older people literally laughed at me. We did end up breaking up, but the love we felt for each other was absolutely real. On top of that, there are plenty of high school couples who DO stay together and get married. But none of that is the point. The point is that teens can feel real love, they can have lasting relationships, and even the failed ones can be extremely important later in life.

Source: iStock

Adults Always Know Best

One of the most infuriating things to hear as a teen is something along the lines of, "I know best because I'm older than you." Sure, there are times when adults really might understand a situation better, but they certainly do not know everything. In fact, can I tell you guys a secret? Most adults don't know much more than you. We're just scrambling around, trying to figure things out on our own, hoping we're doing the right thing. There are certain situations where you need an older voice of reason, but don't depend on adults to tell you everything, because they can't.

Source: iStock

You Can't Understand Stress

Who here has been told that they can't possibly be stressed out, simply because of their age? *Everyone raises hands* I remember being in high school, feeling impossibly stressed about end of the year exams and college applications and social stuff, and hearing adults say things like, "Oh please, you don't even know what stress is! Wait until you're older! Then you'll get it!" I always felt the immediate urge to punch them in the face, but alas, I did not.

Listen: if you hear adults say this, ignore them. Your stressful feelings are valid. Even science backs you up - a 2014 study found that American teens are more stressed out than adults. Sure, sometimes adults might get stressed about bigger things, like huge financial issues and health concerns, but that doesn't mean teens can't feel stressed about the huge things in their lives!

Source: iStock

You Need To Do Well In High School If You Ever Want To Succeed

So many teens are pushed to the limit because they are told, over and over again, that success in high school goes hand in hand with success later in life. I don't want to discourage you from studying, but this isn't exactly true. Yes, you should learn responsibility and accountability by going to class and learning how to listen to authority figures. Yes, you should absolutely learn the basics of subjects like math, English, and science. Of course you should study and do homework and be your beset self. But that doesn't mean that high school determines the rest of your life. You can still succeed later on without straight A report cards or perfect attendance.

On top of that, you might not even succeed until you're way older - most people don't peak at 16. Read this and you'll see what I mean.

Source: iStock

Being On Your Phone All The Time Is Ruining You

For some reason, an older person's favorite topic of conversation seems to be about "young people and their phones." They are totally obsessed with how often you look at your cell phone. I get it - they think cell phones are replacing human interaction and that we need to be more present. Sure, this is probably true in a way. But being on our phones a lot is not destroying our lives. A recent study found that being on your phone a lot isn't ruining your mental health. Show that to the next adult who annoys you about your phone.

Source: iStock

It's Better To Be Safe Than Sorry

Teenagers are, by nature, curious and adventurous. So much so, in fact, that many adults get scared of that behavior and try to keep teens from taking any sort of risk whatsoever. I get it - parents are worried about their kids, for good reason, and they don't want them getting hurt or doing something really stupid. That makes sense. But that doesn't mean you shouldn't sometimes walk on the wild side. Don't do anything dangerous, like trying drugs or walking along train tracks or something, but don't be afraid to try new things, even if they're a little scary. A study from last year found that risk taking teenagers just might be better at learning - which makes sense, when you think about the experience gained.

Source: iStock

Boys Will Be Boys

Much of what we think about gender roles comes from what we're told growing up - and unfortunately, many young women are told to accept the stupid behavior of boys, because they can't help it. When I was younger, I was advised from many, many adults to just deal with teasing from boys, because that's how they are. I watched girls get slut shamed and victim blamed because a guy can't think without his penis getting involved. Teen girls are told that teen boys are going through a tough hormonal time and can't always be held responsible for their actions because it's not their fault they think about sex all the time. This is bullshit, frankly, and a huge reason why we live in the victim blaming Trump America that we do.

Source: iStock

Your Acne Will Go Away When You Get Older

On a lighter note, don't listen to the adults who tell you that your pimples will magically disappear the day you become a legit adult. They will not. I know more adults who have acne than adults who don't. Sorry!

Source: iStock

If You Don't Go To College, You'll Ruin Your Life

College is great - but it is not essential to your life. In some fields, it might be - there are some jobs you simply won't get hired for without a degree - but there are plenty of worthwhile and successful careers that don't require college experience. College is expensive AF, and it's hard, and it's not for everyone. Think about your options. Give yourself a gap year or years if needed. The great thing about college is that it will always be there. You can go back and get a degree at 80 years old if you want! Just consider what YOU want, not what your parents want, and make your decision from there.

Source: iStock

Being An Adult Sucks

Actually, it does not! I am an adult, and I can tell you it can be pretty great. I mean, yeah, there are things that suck about it, like paying bills and doing taxes and having to always be responsible and make important decisions. But there are also just as many things that suck about being a teenager, tbh, so it's not that different. I love being an adult. I get to make my own decisions and I don't have to answer to anyone and I can eat whatever I want for my meals. I don't care what anyone thinks about me and I have established relationships and I have more money. It's not all bad!

Source: iStock

You'll Have Time For All Of The Fun Stuff Later

There are two kinds of adults: the ones who act like you can only have fun as a teenager (tbh I feel sorry for those people) and the ones who act like teenagers shouldn't be having too much fun. Once when I was in high school, I wanted to go on vacation and was told to relax, "I'd have time for the fun stuff later." Said adult encouraged me to focus on school and that was it. Uh... nah. First of all, have fun whenever you want. Second, on a more morbid note, you might not have time later. Think about it.

Source: iStock

High School Is The Best Four Years Of Your Life

I know you've heard this debunked a million times, but seriously - high school should not be your peak life. I promise you, there are so many better parts of life.

Source: iStock

Which one of these lies have you been told? What did we forget to include? Share in the comments.

You can follow the author, Jessica Booth, on Twitter or Instagram.


6 Dumb Things Adults Think About Teenagers

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  • Austin Morin

    I hate gender roles.
    And that is why I’m agender.
    It’s so stupid, if a guy get laid, he gets a hig-five from his friends if a girl gets some, she gets shamed. it’s so damn stupid.
    Also, I belive ppl should wait until marriage, but whatever.
    Stay in school kids!
    And one last thing..If you’re in highschool, at least wait until you’re out to start having sex, I think it’s disgusting how 15 year olds (and even younger) Are having sex! Calm the fuck down! You have your whole life ahead of you to do that!

    Well if you want STD’s and shit, go ahead…
    I’m 15, I wanna wait, so does my gf.
    People just need to slow down, why rush it?
    It’s better to wait and share that experience with someone you truly love, rather than just give it away to anyone willing to take it.