Monday, February 16, 2015

Don't Stereotype My Generation

The other day at work, a co worker was talking about how he was trying to figure out what he was going to watch when he got home; whether it would be Grimm, Person of Interest, etc. 
I was equally excited because Palmer was just beginning to play a video game I had just finished and loved so I told him about that. 
He looked at me, smirked and said, "You're such a Millennial." 
I smiled, said "Maybe" and walked away because I was kind of pissed. 

I love video games. I guess I'm a grown up child.

The word "Millennials" makes me cringe (see here). Mostly because articles about Millennials are written by a generation trying to understand them either for some marketing purpose or to vent some misplaced frustrations and the conclusion they've come to is that Millennials are self absorbed know it all's who only care about Facebook and coffee and who boomerang back in with their parents because they're too entitled and lazy to do anything real and worthwhile.

"Millennials" aren't pieces of Ikea furniture you're blindly trying to assemble. They're not new found contraptions whose Use & Care manuals you're trying to decode. They're not a new species to put under a microscope and pick apart.

Speaking of Ikea...

Instead, I wish there were more articles describing an age group that finds the value in a tool like Facebook, can appreciate the art of craft beer and has maybe learned to love coffee a bit too much but who are also seeking depth, meaning, answers and belonging - just like everyone else (at least everyone should be).

Dude. I'm just 28 years old. I'm a stay at home mom to two young children. My goal is to be happy. Be healthy. Raise happy. Raise healthy.
I want to leave the world better than how I found it, whatever that looks like. 

And I have no time for the absence of love. None.

I don't need a label to be figured out. Just ask me. 
I don't need someone telling me what I want in a church. I'll find it.
Trying to tell me what I like, what I don't like.
What I am like, what I am not like.
How I lead and how I work.
How I love and what I want in love.
That doesn't work. 

Yet another article about "Millennials" showed up in my newsfeed but this one I related to.

There was a comment left under the article that summed up my feelings about this subject.

 "I detest pretty much everything said about a given generation, but in particular of Millennials. It's a lazy categorization used to marginalize important events and important ideas, and to make "Get off my lawn" style youngster-trashing sound academic."

I do understand and respect the difference between generation and generation. 10 years can make a remarkable difference on a population of people's thinking, feelings and actions. It's fascinating. But like the comment said, to create wild generalizations about an age group does no one any favors. 
I vented this blog out a year ago. I had to change my age mentioned above from "27" to "28". When my co worker said what he did, I thought, "That's it!" and I came home and finished my vent. 

I don't expect people to stop using the word Millinnials just as people haven't stopped referring to Baby Boomers and Generation X or Y. It would be refreshing to see more positive observations rather than judgments, though. 

Look at these Millennials. They're probably flying back home to their parents.