Doctor, lawyer, teacher… child?
One of those careers is not like the rest — but it’s an option for some young adults in China looking for their next step.
The “full-time children” phenomenon has amassed 40m views on China’s social app Xiaohongshu, and is becoming increasingly popular among recent college graduates, per the Los Angeles Times.
Because there’s a major mismatch between the job market and the applicant pool.
Chinese youth — many of whom spent years pursuing academic and professional goals — are finishing higher education to find there are no jobs:
Rather than taking jobs that are financially or intellectually unfulfilling, some youths are sticking with a role they held before leaving for college: child.
… is about more than just sleeping in a twin bed at your parents’ house.
It’s a drastic departure from China’s infamous “996 culture” — i.e., working 9am to 9pm, six days a week.
… is just the newest ripple from a faltering job market.
And it joins a host of other trends driven by young people:
All this comes as China continues to emerge from its strict pandemic lockdowns, which caused weakened consumer spending, higher debt, and a worsening real estate market.
Even worse: A recent opinion piece from a Chinese outlet contends that if the ~16m young people “lying flat” in their parents’ homes were included, the true youth unemployment rate could’ve been as high as 46.5%.