Just when we thought Robin was leading the charge into adulthood, out of nowhere comes Marshall Eriksen, all grown up. While Robin is working out issues I cannot even begin to understand, Marshall is becoming the man he’s always wanted to be. Not only has he finally given up working for “the man” and landed his dream job, he’s becoming a dad, which is basically nature’s way of saying you better get it together. While he has to make a few changes — like softening up his language for the sake of his baby — Marshall is more driven than ever. All of this adds up to what seems like a great future, but it’s undoubtedly a very different one than his friends will have. While we’ve seen flash-forwards that reveal the gang is even tighter during those middle-aged years, for now Marshall’s dramatic leap forward might create some distance between the Eriksens and the rest of the group. Until now, the idea of having a baby has been the clear next-step in their marriage, but with Marshall now determined to save the world for the sake of his unborn child, it’s taken on a new meaning. Sure, he can still go out for a drink every now and then, but once the baby comes, trading off babysitting duties with Lily might prove to be a challenge. Marshall is entering unknown territory and not even his closest friends can offer advice. While the others still deal with the usual problems — like pondering whether or not dating your therapist is creepy — Marshall will be worried about how to support a growing family and whether or not buying biodegradable diapers is worth the hassle. The Eriksens have always been ahead of the curve by getting married first, and having a child is pushing them even further away from the place where their friends seem to rest. Widening worries and changing priorities will eventually change the group dynamic, perhaps for the better. Until then, we’ll just have to wait and watch it happen.