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How BTS's hiatus announcement relates to the Quarter Life Crisis many Millenials face right now

by AoiKasumi about a month ago in pop culture
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Revealing the struggles of fame and young adulthood

Image from BTS (방탄소년단) ‘찐 방탄회식’ #2022BTSFESTA

On June 14th BTS uploaded their yearly FESTA Dinner Party on YouTube in celebration of their 9th anniversary. In an stated to be unscripted video they are remiscening the growth and struggles they went through and how their relationship to their work and being part of the biggest south korean boy group has changed. They have been climbing up the ladder of success for the past nine years seemingly without a break. Each of them functioning in their own roles without much time to question the direction they are heading to and finding it increasingly difficult to internally find meaning in the work they are putting out.

BTS has dealed with the restrictions of the pandemic just like everyone else and performed concerts without an audience but ultimately found worldwide success with songs like “Butter” and “Permission to Dance” and travelled to America multiple times.

This success came with huge media attention, daily interviews and even meeting the world’s political leaders. The increase in popularity also posed higher expectations and responsibility that go far beyond their music. A pressure that may feel to heavy to live up to and potentially give them a sense of imposter syndrome. They are humbly seeing themselves as being lucky and clearly attribute their fame to their beloved Army fans.

The BTS members who are now aged between 24 and 29 years old inevitably have to think about the next chapter of their life as the two years of mandatory military service is approaching for the older members. They probably have spent most of the nine years after their debut still living together and identifying as part of the group BTS. While this may have given them a strong sense of belonging and purpose in life, their individual dreams and aspirations always had to come second.

You may argue that BTS has much less to worry about than the average person or most of their fellow K-Pop colleagues who don’t have their breakthrough despite years of training and may end up with financial struggles. But at the same time they have started to ask the same questions as many young adults these days. Just like BTS, other Millennials are also facing uncertainty about their future. The pandemic may have completely altered their outlook on life, robbed them of the perceived safety of their jobs or social network and accelerated an identity crisis.

With the unsteadiness of the world around us and much less opportunities to acquire the same wealth as the generations before us, we don’t have as much left to strive for. So now, more than ever before, we are yearning to understand who we are and what our mission in life is. The pandemic has disrupted our everyday lifes and sense of normalcy for more than two years. Instead it gave us plenty of time to reflect on our lives to this point and to wonder what kind of life we want to live from here onwards. This search for meaning and a new purpose in life is a process that is still going to continue long past the events that have caused it.

In that regard even though K-Pop idols and regular young people ho have diverse cultures may lead lifes that are vastly different from each other we still face similar struggles in navigating through a global crisis and facing the problems that only our generation can relate to. Most importantly, we are striving to find happiness even in uncertain times.

Written by AoiKasumi

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About the author


I’m a graphic designer & youtuber. I write about asian pop culture, art and design, personal thoughts and financial freedom. Follow me on

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