Turning 18 is a milestone! Let's explore the new opportunities that are open to newly-minted adults.
In the end, every state's laws are a little different. But most states allow 18-year-olds to do the following without a parent's permission:
- Get a tattoo or piercing
- Enlist in the military
- Buy fireworks
- Buy spray paint
- Buy a pet
- Drink alcohol outside the U.S.
- Make medical decisions
- Give blood
- Sue someone
- Be on a jury
- Try their luck with the lottery
- Change their name
- Get a credit card
- Buy stock
- Buy real estate
- Buy a car
- Adopt a child
- Get married
- Run for state office (in most states)
- Work in a bar and serve drinks (even though you can't yet consume alcohol)
- Buy pornography
- Have sex with someone 18 or over
- Be tried as an adult for a crime you commit
You know what you can't do at 18?
- Buy cigarettes (21)
- Buy alcohol (21)
- Buy marijuana (21, where it's legal)
- Rent a car (25)
This is just a friendly reminder that just because you can doesn't mean you should.
One of the most important things about legally becoming an adult is taking responsibility for your own actions. You are in control of your life. So make wise choices and steer your life in the direction you want it to go.
Are you over 18? What smart or not-so-smart decisions did you make at the age of 18? What advice would you give someone who's turning 18? Tell us in the comments!