grow up


grew up; grown up; growing up; grows up

intransitive verb

: to grow toward or arrive at full stature or physical or mental maturity : to progress from childhood toward adulthood
growing up intellectually
grew up in the city
also : to become an adult
She wants to be a doctor when she grows up.
: to stop thinking or behaving in a childish way
He should grow up and accept his responsibilities.
: to begin to exist and develop as time passes
A number of cities grew up along the river.

Examples of grow up in a Sentence

everyone has to grow up at some point in their lives
Recent Examples on the Web Soh started Voda, however, because growing up, Singapore left him as an adult, seeking therapy for his gay shame. Jamie Wareham, Forbes, 15 Feb. 2024 Mosley, who grew up in Detroit in the 1980s and ’90s and is now co-host of Fresh Air With Terry Gross and Tonya Mosley, is joined by her nephew, Antonio Wiley, to tell a story of family disconnection and healing. Etan Vlessing, The Hollywood Reporter, 15 Feb. 2024 But when the first generation who grew up with social media and smartphones hit college, which happened around 2014, a dramatic shift took place. David Cole, The New York Review of Books, 15 Feb. 2024 Liam Neeson welcomed two sons with his late wife Natasha Richardson Liam Neeson’s sons are all grown up — and still enjoy spending time with their famous father. Emily Krauser, Peoplemag, 15 Feb. 2024 When chef Sarah Thompson was growing up, summer visits to her grandmother Gloria’s house were synonymous with Jamaican feasts of curried goat, brown-stew chicken, and callaloo cooked down with onions and peppers. Saveur Editors, Saveur, 14 Feb. 2024 Though American—Soraya grew up in Minnesota, and Marina went to high school in Greenwich, Connecticut—both women are bona fide cosmopolites. Virginia Heffernan, WIRED, 14 Feb. 2024 Stewart grew up in the Los Angeles suburb of Woodland Hills. Alex Morris, Rolling Stone, 14 Feb. 2024 Sprinkle, who grew up in the state and played at Montana State, left a program that had won 27 and 25 games the past two seasons, reaching the NCAA Tournament both times, and was returning the bulk of its roster. Mark Zeigler, San Diego Union-Tribune, 3 Feb. 2024 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'grow up.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

First Known Use

1535, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Time Traveler
The first known use of grow up was in 1535

Dictionary Entries Near grow up

Cite this Entry

“Grow up.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 24 Feb. 2024.

Kids Definition

grow up

: to grow toward or reach full mental and physical growth

More from Merriam-Webster on grow up

Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
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