Dear 100 Hour Board,
Due to some mental health stuff, I've spent my college years living at home and not away in an apartment, having the normal BYU social experience (yay depression). However, now as I approach my senior year (and my 25th birthday) I am doing much better and wanting to move into an apartment. I fear that I am too old now though, and that people will view me as the old, weird one that is trying to be young forever (the Provo bro stereotype comes to mind, even though I'm a girl but same thing). Do you think 24 (25 in July) is too old to move out for the social aspect? Will people think I'm trying to hold onto my youth by doing what you normally do at age 20-22? I feel like I'm that age so it sucks that I'm not. I don't feel ready to be 25 yet. Not ready for a serious relationship, not ready to settle down, not ready to graduate, not ready to have kids. I just feel like my mental health problems stunted my emotional growth and now I don't know how to proceed. Please tell me honestly, would I still be able to fit in at my age?
P.S. I know age-range varies depending on apartment so I'm looking at College Place, Liberty Square, Lanai, and The Village if that makes a difference.
I'll say that, in general, it seems like the big apartment complexes (such as Liberty Square, Campus Plaza, King Henry, etc.) do tend to draw in younger crowds. The people at the Village seem a little older, maybe, but they also seem...well...I don't know. Like they all have a ton of money and also like to just throw that money around.
Aside from my first year at Helaman Halls, I spent my entire college career living in small apartments and houses, and the ward I was in always had a very wide range of ages. I liked it quite a bit, and I looked up to the older guys a lot. So, generally, that's what I'd recommend for you.
College greatly distorts perception of age. So much is changing and there are so many opportunities for growth that the difference between 18 and 20 or 22 and 24 can feel astronomical. But in reality, that's barely a difference. 2 years doesn't mean anything in terms of socializing, and being 25 certainly does not exclude you from the college experience. You can enjoy yourself and make good friends in an apartment and in a ward regardless of a microscopic age difference.
Outside of BYU, my close friends range in age from 21-32. Some are closer to my age of 23, some are closer to 10 years older than me. But that doesn't bother me in the slightest; I can spend time with someone who's 29 then someone who's 22 and not feel any difference in the way I socialize with them.
Moving into an apartment and changing your lifestyle can be stressful, but it's going to be great. You're going to make tons of friends and have a good experience, regardless of your age.
I just wanted to chip in and say that I've had roommates who were in their mid to upper twenties and it never seemed weird to me. We were friends, and they made tons of friends in our ward, and nobody thought it was weird that they weren't younger. It probably helped that I was also in my twenties by that point, so they weren't too much older than me, but if you follow all the other writers' advice and find somewhere with an older crowd, I don't think it would be a problem.