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What do people in their early 30s do when they’re home alone?

A review of the peculiar habits of the new young adults


There is a comfortable world. One can do what one wants, be free from the prying gaze of people and express one's vocation without restraint. It is simple: stay at home alone. But between cost of living and precarious work contracts, according to the independent financial consultancy Moneyfarm, it costs eur 1500 a month to get by in Milan, for example. To live with dignity comes close to 3000. Confirming the less than encouraging data is a Buitoni survey conducted on a sample of women and men Millennials which reveals that the majority (62%) still question everything.

Undecided about the turn their lives will take, they are carefree (51%) and less fulfilled (48%) ready to change direction at any moment. They are not afraid, in fact their main goal is to maintain the sparkling spirit (52%) that characterised the previous decade. They feel younger than their age (59%) despite struggling to come to terms with the lack of a stable job (65%), the absence of a reliable partner (61%) and the work/life balance (56%). At home alone they are still free to let their guard down. In what way?

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The first to reveal herself is Anna (fictitious name), a nurse resident in Rome, in a couple but still searching for inner peace. She relates that when she is in the company of herself, she wants to talk out loud. The aim is not to recapitulate the day, make a shopping list or remember something she missed but to confide in herself. To try to be more lucid and analyse the objectivity or otherwise of her reactions. She does this at times when she is in difficulty and if she needs a shoulder, 'an arm, at the end of which I always find my hand'. A sort of self-induced therapy of which she will never know the scientific benefit but which makes her feel safe.

Following her is Gianni, who instead uses his lonely house in London to be tested by his reflection. The mirror is a tool to discover his weaknesses and to simulate his LinkedIn interviews. In the world of finance, you have to try to become "as unassailable as possible". Times are tough and it is better to shelter yourself from the frailties that slip out. Definitely inappropriate for the numbers market. As to why he makes such a cynical confession, apart from passing the buck to the London Business School, he makes it clear that he does not condemn his weaknesses, he just avoids making them obvious.

Nina alone lives the life of a star. When she closes the door of her house in Milan's Chinatown behind her back, the kitchen wall becomes her fixed room, the hood her sound zone: she gives interviews, improvises solos, pretends unwelcome paparazzi at the cooker. Between a reality show and a face to face with an imaginary Alessandro Cattelan, the goal is always and only to be asked the question she has always dreamed they would ask her. And so the monologue moment starts... 

Then there are those who take advantage of intimacy to walk around naked without feeling judged, those who spend hours and hours in front of the mirror experimenting with the most disparate hairstyles, and those who turn on the hairdryer and switch off their brains. One thing is certain, there is a comfortable world even if it is currently only in our own homes. Alone. When we can afford it.



Illustration by Gloria Dozio - Acrimònia Studios