The years of young adulthood are often associated with opening horizons. Making friends. Having adventures. The first independent steps into work, study, or love. For many young Ukrainians, however, war with Russia has upended that reality, replacing it with danger and death, depression and dislocation.
In these interviews, six young people who live in and around the Ukrainian capital, Kyiv, explore the pressure of experiencing young adulthood at a time of conflict. A few have seen and felt the cost of war painfully close. Others say their daily lives are, for the most part, mundane. But all agreed that it has indelibly altered what should be their formative years as adults.
Maryna Bodnar grew up in the southern Ukrainian city of Mariupol. She was, she said, an "untameable girl” — a daredevil who spent her adolescence seeking thrills and adventure. She met Vitalik on a dating site and they fell in love. Two children followed.