Just like Peter Pan, there’s a growing cohort of Gen Zers who are refusing to grow up and embrace life’s major milestones to adulthood, like getting some form of qualification or joining the world of work.

Instead, they’re opting to become NEETs—not in employment, education, or training—and creating record levels of youth unemployment around the world.

According to the International Labour Organization, about a fifth of people between 15 and 24 worldwide in 2023 are currently NEETs.

In Spain alone, over half a million 15-to-24-year-olds are neither studying nor working. Meanwhile in the U.K., almost three million Gen Zers are now classed as economically inactive—with 384,000 youngsters joining the “workless” class since the Covid pandemic.

The studies don’t delve into what’s inspiring young people to ditch the rat race and opt for a life under their parent’s roof or on public subsidies, but separate research highlights that even if they did start climbing the corporate ladder, buying a home of their own still feels like an impossible task.

Reams of research shows that those in their early 20s are earning less, have more debt and see higher delinquency rates than millennials did at their age.

Credit reporting agency TransUnion found that 20-somethings today are taking home around $45,500, while millennials at their age were earning $51,852 when adjusted for inflation.

Despite earning less, young people today are being forced to dig deep for basic necessities like food, groceries, and gas, thanks to inflation. Meanwhile, house prices have increased more than twice as fast as income has since the turn of the millennium.

This divergence goes a long way in explaining why young people may feel like saving—or even working—towards the future is futile.

As one Gen Zer noted in Fortune: “I’m just focusing on the present because the future is depressing.”

Hustling, girl bossing or “work hard, play harder” just doesn’t quite have the same grip on Gen Z as it did on millennials starting out.

Many young people today would rather protect their well-being than compete their way up the corporate ladder only to not be able to afford the McMansion their parents bought for a fraction of the price.

Even those who do want to work, don’t want a career. Instead, many Gen Zers are eyeing up easygoing jobs that don’t require regular overtime, antisocial working hours, or substantial responsibilities like managing a large team.

Others are avoiding office jobs: The hottest roles right now among Gen Z grads are in teaching, where low pay is balanced with weeks of vacation. Meanwhile, non-grad Gen Zers are picking up the tools and taking up trade jobs in record numbers.

At the same time as unemployment among the youth is rising, their mental health is in decline.

Gen Z are nearly twice as stressed out as millennials were at their age; More than a third of 18-24-year-olds are suffering from a “common mental disorder” (CMD) like stress, anxiety, or depression; And Gen Zers who are working are taking significantly more sick leave than Gen Xers 20 years their senior.

“Youth worklessness due to ill health is a real and growing trend; it is worrying that young people in their early 20s, just embarking on their adult life, are more likely to be out of work due to ill health than those in their early 40s,” researchers at the think tank Resolution Foundation (RF) previously told Fortune.

Really, is it any surprise that those mentally struggling would avoid joining the world of work when more than half of CEOs even admit that their company’s culture is toxic?

Have you chosen a life of unemployment over climbing the corporate ladder? We’d like to hear your story. Email orianna.royle@fortune.com

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