YOUR WAY IS NOT THE ONLY WAY.
Times. Have. Changed. We are living in new, modern times. Updated. Refreshed. Cutting-Edge. Regardless of how you put it, this means that virtually everything is different now. I’ll give you a couple examples to warm you up before dropping some ground-breaking information on you that you won’t want to miss.
1: Advanced Technology
Just look at our cell phones. That right there is probably one of the biggest, and most obvious transformations and we hold it in the palms of our hands. Okay, okay. Lately, major corporations, let’s call them Crapple and Cramsung, haven’t exactly produced the greatest product. (Crapple, because they basically suck lately. Cramsung because they pack things into a phone and put it out for the world before its even ready.) They are taking away features people love and adding features we didn’t even ask for, then charging us MORE than an arm and a leg to have it. (Which is just more proof that they pay absolutely no attention to the “Suggestions” or “Customer Feedback” sections on their websites.) Other products are spontaneously combusting or catching fire and posing a serious threat to consumers everywhere. Nice one, guys. You really outdid yourselves this time. Fortunately for you, we’ll ignore those flaws for the sake of making a point. Older generations? Do exactly that; look past the recent issues and you’ll notice just how far cellular technology has come along.
Hahahaha yes. The RAZR. This sleek, stylish flip phone debuted in 2004. At the time, I was a clumsy, care-free, 4th grader with an embarrassing haircut and I paid little attention to ever-improving technology. But even I knew that sweet Motorola phone was coveted by so many. In 2005 the RAZR V3i was an even bigger hit with cellphone users. Especially in the colors maroon and orchid. My basketball coach had one. My teacher had one. My neighbor had one. Half my church congregation had one. Yeah, buddy. Those were the crown jewels of mobile phones. I’m not even sure my family was using cell phones at that time. And if we were, it was a blocky, indestructible Nokia that charged a dollar a minute to use. FANCY! *Insert eye roll*
But now look at us. We have touch screens, 4G LTE, Angry Birds, banking apps, 16 megapixel back cameras, notes, weather apps, email, virtual wallets, and MUCH more all accessed easily on a thin, rectangular gadget that fits in our pocket. Holy Crapple!
Example number 2: High School Graduation Requirements
That’s right. I’m talking about the ever-changing and frustratingly inconsistent list that determines whether a student graduates or not. In my senior year of high school, the math requirement changed. I had not taken the specific math course they decided was necessary. I had taken the one that was ruled necessary since, like, EVER. Thankfully, I escaped by a HAIR. The new requirement didn’t apply to those of us set to graduate in 2013. SCORE. However, I felt bad for my younger friends, especially those who were home schooled and had to change their lesson plans and etc. to fit the “rules.” Y’all survived. Congrats!
I’m not going to get into all the boring details about what the requirements were before 1975-ish and what they are now. And, personally, I don’t want to do all of that research. That’s not why I’m writing this “letter” that’s about to be jam-packed with toe-crushing F.Y.I material. Phones and education are just scratching the surface of change and we millennials (as I honestly HATE being called because of the bad rep we get on a daily basis) are thriving in this truly disparate lifestyle.
Now that I’ve opened the gateway for the purpose of this post with some pretty obvious and probably dispensable information, I hope you’re ready to have a bombshell dropped on you.
As said at the very beginning of this piece, your way is not the only way. And I’m so very thrilled to explain why and just what it is I am talking about.
SUCCESS. Everyone wants it. Everyone has their own idea of what success is and how to achieve it. And everyone thinks their way is the best way. ESPECIALLY the majority of the members of Generation X and above. (To those of you who don’t shove your methods and “constructive criticism” down our throats, nothing to see here. Move along. This doesn’t pertain to you. Also, THANKS.) However, if you’re the older man sitting in the booth with his wife at Waffle House, talking trash about the 22-year-old waitress serving you saying “She’ll never amount to anything. She’s obviously not smart if she’s working here,” or if you’re the rich, lawyer dad lecturing your son because he wants to be a chef and you don’t think he’ll make enough money and “cooking isn’t a man’s job,” OR if you’re the stuck-up, judgy, suburban housewife who frowns upon young girls going after careers thinking “every woman should stay at home,” STOP IT.
STOP IT STOP IT STOP IT. UGH!!
That waitress? She’s working killer hours so she can afford to take classes at the local college which, by the way, she is attending when she isn’t at work serving your snarky self.
Your son? He has skills you probably aren’t even aware of and maybe, just MAYBE, if you try some of his dishes your mind will be blown and you’ll see just how much potential he has. He could own a classy, expensive, five-star restaurant some day. He’ll be fine. Trust me. Cooking most certainly can be a “man’s job.” Tell your son I said keep it up.
The working woman is not an issue. What I’m about to say will equally anger both feminists and the judgemental housewife from “another time.” Brace yourselves. Women weren’t created to do everything a man can do. They were created to do what men CAN’T do. To COMPLETE them. It’s OKAY to work. It’s OKAY to get an education. It’s OKAY to want to be single and independent and never get married. It’s OKAY to be a stay-at-home mom. It’s OKAY to have kids and work so long as work doesn’t become more important. It’s OKAY to be a doctor, lawyer, musician, teacher, chef, writer, actress, realtor, or whathaveyou. Women CAN have important careers just as much as a man can. But women should not have the goal of overpowering men to prove we can do things and have equal rights. Honestly, it makes you look stupid and weak and desperate. Women are strong because of the role we were already given. Childbirth. Mothering. Menstrual crap for crying out loud. We work when we’re sick. Mothers never take a day off. Women are already powerful and needed and important. STOP TRYING TO PROVE WHAT WE ALREADY KNOW BY SHOVING YOUR FEET INTO A MAN’S SHOES. Just STOP. You don’t need to prove anything!!!
A working woman is fine. A non-working woman is fine. Quit pulling the drapes back and peering out the window at your generation Y neighbor who’s kissing her also working husband goodbye and driving to her place of work. Don’t you have a pie in the oven? Go clean your already spotless kitchen for the THIRD TIME TODAY and leave that young couple alone. They’re not hurting anyone and they’re not hurting themselves.
Y’all need to leave the men and women of the younger generations ALONE. Please. I’m begging you. Your constant critiquing, that we don’t even ask for to begin with, makes things worse for us. Want to know something else? I’m twenty-one, I dropped out of college after attending no more than two years. I failed probably three different classes while there, one of them twice, and I hated school because I had no idea why I was even there. I didn’t even know what I wanted to do because everyone older than me shoved it in my face since day one that I HAD to attend college and I HAD to do so right after high school otherwise I’d be jobless, homeless, and stuck. (Thanks for killing my drive.) I worked fast food for two years, I’ve had 4 jobs in the past three, I can’t seem to save money very well yet, and I don’t always keep my room clean. *GASP* I know! I’m a MESS! I’m HOPELESS! But guess what. After taking a much-needed break from college and not going along with what everyone else my age was doing, I finally figured out what I wanted to do and I’m EXCITED to go back to school. I may graduate later than others but who cares? Who said I had to have my degree before I was 25?? Just because YOU did it that way does NOT mean I should have to in order to be successful. Some of y’all didn’t even go to college so don’t even think about telling me how I should. Some of you tried the whole “break” thing and it took you even longer to finish and you SWEAR that is the wrong way to do it. “Just get it done and out of the way ASAP.” Okay, that’s a great idea. But everyone is DIFFERENT. Different ways work for different people. Just because it didn’t work for you doesn’t mean it won’t work for me or someone else. STOP FORCING YOUR OPINION DOWN OUR THROATS LIKE YOU KNOW BETTER. Because NEWS FLASH. YOU DON’T. Yes, you are SMART. And you do have a lot to contribute to the world and to us “babies.” But you have got to stop saying it’s the best and only way. That just makes us angry and feel extremely pressured to fit a mold that clearly wasn’t made for us. Oh, and we really don’t care what you think we should do. The older we get the more we realize we are the only ones who determine our futures. (God has the ultimate plan for us and may His will be done) but no other human being gets to decide how we pave our paths to success. When we “leave the nest” our parents don’t even get to choose how we make a life for ourselves. Why should you??
Times have changed. We will learn at our own pace and we’ll get there eventually. We will be the future and we will run it well. We will dream our own dreams and achieve them without your excessive and unwanted handholding. We’ll fight for a chance to be something great and we will win. We will fail several times but we’ll keep trying. We will make mistakes but we’ll learn from them.
We will do things our own way. We WON’T do them your way.
And it will be okay.
a stubborn, reckless Next Gen who is tired of your crap
Ps. To the millennials who think being “on fleek” and having more than 12 likes on Instagram is TOP PRIORITY, and thinking you can continue to mooch off of mommy and daddy’s bank account for as long as you want because they won’t stop you… Y’all the whole reason the rest of us hard-working, dedicated, NON-MOOCHING, young adults are drowning in flack from the elders. Please. Separate yourselves from us. It’s embarrassing.