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Generation X Parents, What Have You Done to Our Millennials?

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posted on Feb, 20 2016 @ 11:08 PM
a reply to: DisinfoCom

I've seen plenty of what you describe in the population at large, and thankfully, see those pitfalls as things my wife and I have avoided with our children. I guess they're not millennials (going on 2 and 4), and I don't think my wife is Gen X (I'm 40, she's 30), but the parents you're describing sounds like the people I was silently ridiculing in my own mind long before I had children of my own. Hopefully, we're not in the minority, at least anymore.

Maybe it's just the spheres I'm in, but I can only think of one set of parents I know personally who sound like that. So either my circle of friends and associates are the (IMO) better minority of parents, or (hopefully) we're the early adopters rebelling against what the earlier (or earlier reproducing) Gen X-ers did wrong.

posted on Feb, 21 2016 @ 12:17 AM
An easy demarcation for Gen X is JFK's assassination, I was born 9 months afterwards.

To convey how my generation was more or less ignored, in favour of the grim aesthetics of Baby Boomer's "classics" like Grease or mindless sitcoms like Happy Daze. The reduced birth rate insured every obstacle to networking and contact with like-minded youth. I would point to how movies ~totally~ lacked any meaningful soundtracks as an example. This media world was presented on 3 channels plus PBS.

That sets the scene. My parents were indeed Urban Bohemians, born in the Depression. For as much as they were indeed cool and showed me a lot of the world, they carried some heavy baggage. Compared to their peers, they were light years ahead in being open minded, I should praise them for that. My best summation of that baggage was they were both incredibly selfish, def self-centered. On top of the weak hand that Gen X was dealt, I was an only child and couldn't bring any weight to discussions, no demands were even considered.

So, both selfish and divorced, my dad thought himself overly important and over indulged himself in material things and lifestyle. Mom went the opposite way, a corporate job and saving money....err, HOARDING money. Not to sound selfish, but I made it to Ivy league U, with a trail of wrecked schools behind me, against all odds, getting near-B averages....neither of them would cast more than a few $100 my way, and I eventually had to withdraw with 3 years of credits gotten by scamming and forging receipts. Mom hoarded a few $MM in telecom stock, Dad "needed" to travel to Europe, Central America, or Africa (for his archaeology, I can't make this stuff up) While his only son sat on a pile of tuition bills...

So, compare that to the later example of Millennium Moms who would kill for their kids to go to a good college. Most younger people I know their parents put them through college, even if it was difficult and took a long time. I think later generations wanted everything so fast and easy they signed on for loans etc.

Not to whine, but the Gen X issue does not come up very often. I'm trying to give substance to the idea that yes, your parents can carry unreasonable baggage into parenthood. For mine, it was The Depression Era. It mostly correlates with the 1964 time frame, as my older relatives are very much mired in the grimly waste of young Baby Boomers.
edit on 21-2-2016 by FlyingFox because: freedom

posted on Feb, 21 2016 @ 12:22 AM
I do believe that Gen X was very innovative and gave our world much of modern innovation and THANKFULLY put that Greasy Hippy aesthetic to sleep.

posted on Feb, 21 2016 @ 12:50 AM

originally posted by: FlyingFox
I do believe that Gen X was very innovative and gave our world much of modern innovation and THANKFULLY put that Greasy Hippy aesthetic to sleep.

Those non-bathing hippies are back. They hang out at vape shops and starbucks. They call them Hipsters now.

posted on Feb, 21 2016 @ 12:52 AM

The average Gen X family is nearly 70 percent poorer than its counterparts of the same age in 1984, according to a Pew Research Center study from last year. Over time, this gap has widened. The latter now has 47 times more assets than the former, according to's analysis of Pew data.

The recession has affected individuals of all ages. Last week, newly released government data showed that Americans lost a record-breaking 38.8 percent of their wealth from 2007-2010.

This passed through the news mill ...
Huffington / Generation X has suffered massive loss of Wealth
in June 2012

posted on Feb, 21 2016 @ 01:17 AM
I've noticed the comments are no longer on the article.

One of the best comments ...

some epic timing, to be sure. not only was gen x right in the prime home buying years, but they were also young enough to be investing more aggressively than boomers wrt the stock market. same thing applies to the tech bubble. i'm sure many gen x'ers took a right cross to the jaw in 2000 with the nasdaq collapse, then got a knee to the groin in 2008. and it gets worse! gen x is a sandwich generation between boomers and echo boomers. the boomers took a hit too, so they will be hanging onto their higher level jobs with a death grip unlike any we've seen. then to top it all off, when and if gen x'ers DO get a taste of life at the top of the corporate ladder, hordes of hungry echo boomers will be right on our heels, peeling our fingers back, making us let go, and tossing us into the street in our 60s. and by that time, any ss/medicare benefits that exist will kick in at like 72+.

some other of the comments that used to be there. Before they were deleted. Rather like Gen X.

The other nearby small towns fare no better with our age group, some are pure horror stories. The generations before and after us didn't have it this bad.. Even the old timers who have memories of the great depression looks at everybody in my age group with sadness and a bit of fear..


Three of my childhood pals committed suicide in the last year.
8 of my old classmates from our small town school system (24 for the whole class) have been maimed and disabled in these damned wars.
3 have died in these wars.
1 work related death, 2 of cancer, 1 of heart attack.
Many of us have been or are currently in prison.
Only 4 of us live a "normal respectable life".
Of those 4 only 2 can be considered financially secure.
I'm the only one who accepts that it is about to get MUCH worse.

The ignored generation.

We Gen xer's didn't just get hosed, we got set on fire and then had the flames put out with an icepick..

Mike Grouchy

edit on 21-2-2016 by mikegrouchy because: (no reason given)

posted on Feb, 21 2016 @ 02:00 AM
Something that I found interesting to note, observed by Strauss and Howe in their research on these generations, is that in each case the patterns of the childhood era get replayed throughout their lifetimes.

The Silent (the parents of the Boomers) were sort of neglected and ignored by their war hero parents, and so spoiled their children, giving them all the attention they lacked. Kids were worshipped! Animals and kids saved the day (and adults) in films and tv (Lassie and all the other dolphins, bears, etc.). They grew up believing they knew more and better than their parents, and had a mission to change the world, and most of all - were entitled to pleasure, comfort, ease, and fun.

So of course, as they delved in their exploration of pleasure, comfort, ease and fun, in sex, drugs, rock and roll, looking for themselves, they neglected their children and made demon children movies expressing how undesired those were.

And those neglected kids (the Xers) of course gave their kids all the attention they missed and the cycle repeated, as we know, swinging back and forth. Now OUR kids are distinguishing themselves from us with their hairy faces and refusal of stressful work exactly the way the Boomers did.

But in each case, the relationship between the generational group and the world continued to reflect what they were used and expected!!!

Us Xgens will continue to get the crappy end of the stick as we're used to. Just as there was no backup aid or protection for us as kids there will be none for us in old age. The Boomers, through every age, continue to get all they want.
Why is this? It's probably a complex play between events and the collective personality, but the Boomers insist where we probably give up (even with a slight pride in our ability to eat crap with a smile like a pirate).

I saw Deadpool last night and kept thinking about how it illustrated our generation - when the hero meets his heroine, they are both tough losers who play a verbal game of "who has had a worse life", boasting of who was more abused in their childhood... omg, that is so us! We're getting screwed again and again, and deep down we're kinda proud and liking it in a perverted sort of way...just reinforces our sense that we are bada$$.

So what I am getting at........
If this pattern is so predictable, it would follow that the Millenials will also continue in a world in which they don't get screwed, they get taken care of, and they have security. We call that unrealistic because it is not OUR reality, but it is theirs and they will most likely continue to recreate that.

Which means, there is no problem with them and how they are. They'll get along fine.

posted on Feb, 21 2016 @ 04:43 AM
a reply to: DisinfoCom

I am a Gen X (1970) but I didn't have children until I was in my 30s so I now have three gorgeous Gen Z (11, 14 and 15 years old). I have to agree that I do see a difference between them and the previous generation as most of my friends and relatives have Millennial kids. Although I hate to stereotype as we are all unique, the Millennials were the spoilt generation, they had it all, the economy was good when they were born and they grew up with a sense of entlitement. But then the world changed and they were hit really hard when they became of age and struggled to find a job, get onto the property ladder, etc. The youngest millennial are stuck between a rock and a hard place, wanting to leave their parents home, but not having the finances to do so, not because they are lazy, but because most of them are on low wages or zero hours contracts.

Gen Z (my children) were born and grew up in a tougher world and they are aware of the environment, wars and social injustice. I am amazed when my 11 year old daughter comes to me to discuss Zika, gay marriage, etc (and very proud that they do so!). They are also so incredibly talented with computers and technology!

I feel sorry for Gen Z actually, as they will have to fix this messy world we are leaving them.

I may not agree with all of what you say, but great OP!

posted on Feb, 21 2016 @ 09:47 AM
a reply to: subfab

Thanks for posting that. Seems I am a baby boomer after all.
But not by much.

posted on Feb, 21 2016 @ 09:55 AM
a reply to: FlyingFox

You don't hoard money. You save it.

Only an incredibly stupid person pretends that there that there is no need to save. You will not always be able to take care of yourself or those around you and unforeseen events may wipe out what you currently have on hand to pay your present needs.

Living paycheck to paycheck is uncomfortable and risky. Imagine having enough to meet your bills plus a few hundred and getting hit with two complete transmission replacements in the space of a few weeks. It happened to us. That is why you save. It could have been far worse. It could have been cancer or something else.

That is why we "hoard" money as you so arrogantly put it.

posted on Feb, 21 2016 @ 10:40 PM
a reply to: dukeofjive696969

Pretty much.

Also, the age range that is supposed to comprise Gen-X has shifted over the years. When I was in my late teens, Douglas Copeland's novel that birthed all the hype was referring to people already out in the working world. Nowadays I meet people who are 35 and call themselves Gen-X, but they are firmly in the same demographic as baby-boomer offspring.

The whole point of calling it Gen x to begin with was there was a baby bust after the baby boom. I saw it at my half-empty school. Even factoring drop-out rates, there were way more freshmen when I was in my final year - a huge influx and purely demographics-driven. So no, baby-boomer above, unless you had kids by the early 70s at the latest you aren't the parent of Gen-xers, and I'm not clear on what age range Millennials are supposed to be in either, apart from that people have been bitching about the ones entering college/the work force for well over a decade now.

Also, (as a genuine Gen-Xer) most of my friends had kids relatively late in life, so their kids are barely in the second grade now. And apart from the ones who became teen mums, but still had kids youngish, their kids are barely in their twenties now.

posted on Feb, 21 2016 @ 10:55 PM
a reply to: mikegrouchy

That doesn't surprise me at all. If I were a demographer I'd actually focus on when someone went through post-secondary schooling for where they fit generationally. The thing is, there was such a massive jump in technology starting in the mid-nineties, along with a radical shift in the workplace. It became less about a company taking a clever person and training them, and more about only hiring people with the right bits of paper. The growth of Human Resources as a profession had a lot to do with that as well.

At any rate, people who went into college before Oracle, Photoshop, Autocad, etc. were being taught, but then graduated into a workplace that demanded it got left behind and a few years later the younger set, who had far more opportunities to acquire these skills, got the better-paying jobs. Or their baby-boomer parents ensured they go in over older more experienced applicants since they were now the demographic in charge.

And while college was cheap, there just weren't the number of jobs there are now + interest rates back then were in the double-digits. Interestingly, I came across one article saying that after the '08 crash Gen-Xers significantly lowered their debt load, while baby-boomers went on a credit bender. I will say this though - we were the last one to get reasonably affordable urban housing. Ironically in the midst of the biggest building boom in history, most entry-level employees are being priced out of the major cities. That'll shift since companies are getting tired of having to pay admin staff 100K when they can move operations to Tennessee or Arizona and pay them35K...

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