I was recently alerted to an article that made me pause. The title, “Generation Crybaby: Why Millennials Are A Fucking Joke” certainly grabbed my attention, so I explored this little ditty to see what the author had to say. I expected to find a frustrated Gen X’er desperate for the days when “those youngin’s” were politically active, believed that they could really change the world, and wore ragged flannels and Doc Martens. People like me. Fine. I was looking for something I would write without taking the time to write it myself. What I found was 500 words about how these “pussies” are the worst and should fuck off into the sea. I appreciate the author’s frustration, but said author didn’t go into nearly enough depth for my liking. After forming two overly long Facebook comments, I paused and said “Uh, Miss B. Don’t you have a forum in which you could explore this issue? Something called a blog? Remember that?” So here we are.
Listen. I GET IT. Millennials can be downright infuriating. But don’t you think WE were infuriating as well? When I dashed out the door my senior year of high school to jump in my long-haired boyfriend’s crappy car as my mother shrieked “YOU ARE NOT GOING OUT OF THIS HOUSE DRESSED LIKE A HOMELESS PERSON” do you not think I was giving her the finger? Kind of like the same way a millennial, glued to her iPhone running out the door to her boyfriend’s car that he “traded” good grades for is doing right this second? All generations are assholes. Yes, yours too. Yes. Yours too.
I was an asshole, and so were you. And that’s okay! We who were raised by Baby Boomers cannot comprehend the generation raised by Yuppies. My peers with kids now? I think they’re RAD. Their kids are going to be PERFECT because they were raised by Generation X. Doesn’t that sound ridiculous and a grandiose generalization? That’s because it is. Because we are always going to think our generation is the best. Wait, strike that. We’re always going to think WE are the best. It’s only natural.
So if you see a Millennial with a therapy dog for anxiety and helicopter parents who wrote to their child’s college of choice to say that their special little snowflake just HAD to be accepted even though their grades were crap? And you’re blowing your stack and screaming into the abyss that this generation is a giant pile of shit and the world is coming to an end? Take a second and think of what our parents thought when we all went to art school and campaigned for change and took jobs in this weird little thing called the internet that was going nowhere. Think about their parents who remembered World War II and watched their kids become flower children. Think about how every damn generation looks down on the generation that comes after them. We did it first, we did it harder, and we did it better. Generalizations again. And again, it’s only natural.
Our movies, music, culture, and lifestyle shape us. And we’re always going to think those things that shaped us personally are the best. Do I want to scream at those dang kids sometimes? You bet your sweet ass I do. But I WAS one of those dang kids once. And you were too. All of us were. And maybe, just maybe, we need to remember that before we start calling an entire generation a bunch of pussies. Just a thought.