Oh, Millennials...

By Kitty Lane

Soapbox time!

Crazy Feeling:  photo credit: JP Korpi-Vartiainen <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/62650637@N02/34172608286">Cast-off</a> via <a href="http://photopin.com">photopin</a> <a href="https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/2.0/">(license)</a>

Crazy Feeling:  photo credit: JP Korpi-Vartiainen <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/62650637@N02/34172608286">Cast-off</a> via <a href="http://photopin.com">photopin</a> <a href="https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/2.0/">(license)</a>

So… why does my generation always make me feel like such an outcast?  I mean, I’m a Millennial…be it on the older side of the generation but a Millennial, no less.  Seriously, I see all this stuff about “Millennials” being needy, dependent on other people to get what they want…always wanting something for nothing. The easy way, the freebies, the handouts…and don’t want to put in the work or make the effort, to earn anything. WTF??? Our generation is double or more in size than the previous generation (Generation “X”) and around the size of the generation before that (Baby Boomers).  We are a BIG generation! Most of those in the Millennial generation are the children of Generation “X”, a few are from the “Baby Boomers”. Generation “X” was the working generation. They are the generation of “Make something from nothing”.  Work hard and you will have all you want or need. Sure, it didn’t work out exactly that way for all of them, I mean, this is the “downer” generation that gave us alternative bands that wrote about despair and pain and well, just all around depressing shit usually… To be fair though, they are still some of the best musicians ever. (Yay, Nirvana, and Nine Inch Nails!) 

Anywho, so why are the “Millennials” the generation of entitlement and whiners when they don’t get what they want when things don’t go their way? Well, let's think about this, shall we… Are we REALLY as bad as they say we are?  Maybe some are but not all of us. Sure, I may have come up closer to Generation “X” but that doesn’t mean I am any less a “Millennial”.  Sure, I have my moments (note, this is a rant and rave blog-hehe) but in all actuality, if I bitch, moan, complain or otherwise, I feel like I have earned that right. Notice I did not say I was entitled to that right? That’s right, I earned it. You know why I earned it? Because I grew up in a lower-middle-class family that never got above that society rank. I almost never got what I wanted and hardly got what I asked for unless it was a swift kick in the tail. I had to work for everything I wanted and got my first job when I was 14 years old. If I wanted to play sports, I paid. If I wanted to get a car, I bought it AND paid my own insurance. When I went away to college and wanted to move home, guess what, I was paying rent because I was grown. I worked for everything I have and still do. Now, doing all this also allowed me to be who I was, who I wanted to be and I get to be that today and I apologize to NO ONE for that! I love me! Now, for some of these people in my generation who make me feel like an outsider like I don’t “fit” into my own generation, well, let's see where the problems may lie…

Some blame the parents…  The Gen X’er’s who worked their asses off through their entire adulthood so they could give their kids everything they wanted. Not because they wanted spoiled brats though, but because they wanted their kids to have everything that they could not have growing up.  They gave their kids basic chores most of the time and didn’t have any consequences if children didn’t do as they were supposed to. They gave them money as a reward for good grades but didn’t say much for bad grades beyond worrying about whether or not they could graduate or get a job. They wanted their kids to understand the value of hard-work and the well-deserved dollar but some were allowed to go on without ever getting a job before college and many who did work got to use their money for play rather than their own bills.  And let's not forget the kids from divorced parents, because there are a lot of them. Those kids sometimes got a double whammy of things being handed over to them. Some got lucky to have at least one parent who pushed them to earn things and to understand the real world but they also had that one parent who fawned over them and just gave them everything because they came from a broken home.  Some kids embraced the broken home and learned about the real world and became independent on their own…others, well, not so much…some of them still blame their parents for their marital/relationship issues to their shrinks. The Gen X’er’s meant well, without a doubt, but for some reason, they just couldn’t stop giving their kids anything they wanted without making them work for it. They just couldn’t stop doing everything for them! Faux Pas!

School bus:&nbsp; photo credit: ThoseGuys119 &lt;a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/62048854@N08/33662445626"&gt;Deer Park UFSD #247&lt;/a&gt; via &lt;a href="http://photopin.com"&gt;photopin&lt;/a&gt; &lt;a href="https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/"&gt;(license)&lt;/a&gt;

School bus:  photo credit: ThoseGuys119 <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/62048854@N08/33662445626">Deer Park UFSD #247</a> via <a href="http://photopin.com">photopin</a> <a href="https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/">(license)</a>

Wait!! Not all parents fall into that mold, I know mine certainly did not!  Some folks blame the schools and the glorious education system. Let me just say, this program they created, “No child left behind” should not be what it is… I mean, I know a few teachers who have told me that some kids go to class and do the minimum amount of work to get by and pass, hell graduate even, and never understood what it meant to fail. They didn’t have to work for it. They sat in school day after day and didn’t learn a damn thing. How sad. This program started right after I graduated high school so I understood failure (I failed a foreign language class) I understood good grades meant I did the work and I did it right and bad grades meant that either I needed help or I just didn’t do what I needed to do. Simple as that. If I got a bad grade, I tried harder, got help if I needed to, I did what I needed to do to get better. That is no longer a requirement apparently. Sorry, but life just does not work this way. You don’t get a job and then get a raise just because you showed up! You don’t get special recognition like the top sales executive, just because you made a sale! It. Just. Doesn’t. Happen. #sorrynotsorry     When I was in school if you failed too many classes and didn’t get your shit together, you had to take summer school, or do that grade over, or you didn’t graduate! And you shouldn’t! Now, there are some who didn’t fail and were simply kicked out of school for stupid shit, and that isn’t really fair. They were robbed of their education and in fact got good grades, did the work, yet they were left behind… yup, this totally makes sense…NOPE! Ugh… I just don’t understand it. I mean, let me think why people in my generation feel entitled to something for nothing. They went through years of education getting just that! School certainly didn’t prepare them for the real world. How many of these kids made it through college properly or had to figure it out ON THEIR OWN well after they should have already had it figured out from teachings in school and at home!

When I was a kid, you had to put in the work, simple as that. Then a few years into the generation and suddenly it all changed. If you won something you were no longer “special” for winning… everyone was awesome because they participated, sure, but that doesn’t mean they all deserved a trophy/ribbon/reward for it! And what about all the school competitions that they have where getting first place no longer means anything?  What kind of shit is that?  I remember in grade school having a school track meet at the end of the year. Sure, it was for fun but we still got ribbons for placing. We got to stand up on the 1st 2nd and 3rd place blocks to get our ribbons in front of the whole school. It was great! It was an adrenaline rush. Guess what? Not everyone got a ribbon because not everyone won! Competition makes the fittest combatant. It's just how it is. Think about it. Getting to be a “winner” just for showing up? Hmmm… Have any of you gotten a promotion because someone else in your company got one?  Anyone?  **crickets**  Yeah, I didn’t think so. I am pretty sure you also cannot get a college degree just for paying tuition for classes. You have to actually show up, do the work well enough to pass the class and make the effort. This is life in the real world.

Not everyone in my generation feels entitled, many of them get it, BUT, the ones who don’t get it, really need to get their shit together! Life is a series of successes and failures. You win some, you lose some but nobody can go through life just merely existing and expecting everything they want to be simply handed over.  You can’t expect to get recognition for something you don’t do right, just because you are doing it. Some people are better at some things than others. Its a part of life! Those of us who are here, doing what we need to do to get through life and succeed, we are the ones making it and struggling through it and we will survive. The ones who are merely existing, that have no ambition, no drive, the ones who are merely living off the system in some cases, get it together. Life is tough, no matter how rich or poor you are, no matter what you might think, it’s just the struggles are different on each end of it. Deserve what you have, don’t just expect it because you are entitled to it. This is life. Deal with it!

Ok, so, on the other end of things, the previous generations really need to stop judging us all based on our worst representatives. I mean, wasn’t it the previous generations who told us not to believe everything you see on t.v? Isn’t that where you see a lot of the millennials that are famous JUST for being famous or because their parents are famous? We aren’t all like that and a lot of those Richie Rich millennials aren’t as bad as you (and we) think they are. Maybe on the surface, a lot of them look like spoiled, pretentious, over-privileged, and undeserving brats…however, there are some that do a lot of good with the money they get and there are lots that are much deeper than they let the public see. I know it's probably few and far between but their parents are the ones who let them out there in the spotlight, let them tell “who their parents are” and who gave them the money to spend… but let's not put any blame on those parents. *wink, wink*  

While we are at it though, can we not forget about the young Millennials who have become billionaires before they hit 30? Look at Mark Zuckerburg… This guy did his thing in college and was a multi-billionaire by the age of 27! So, yeah, cut us some slack! Every generation has their crybabies, spoiled brats, losers, and moochers. They also have their hard workers, strong competitors, self-made millionaires and billionaires, and humanitarians. Please remember that we are a bigger generation and the numbers reflect that. So while it looks like we have more “idiots” in your eyes, please keep in mind that it also means we have more geniuses!  Some of those out there from my generation surely need to get it together but I am also sure that a lot of us Millennials are just late bloomers. And, to be fair, can the previous generations please remember one more thing? Remember,  “YOU DID RAISE US!” And, we thank you for that! We thank you for all you have given to us, taught us, and bestowed upon us, so please, please, give some of us a break, we listened and we are out here doing the damn thing!

-Rant over…