Bust Out the Labelmaker, I Need A New One (because I’m going to throat-punch anyone who calls me a Millennial)

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Every generation has its own attitudes, values and quirks.

Consider, for example, how the Baby Boomers (folks born between 1946 to 1964) revolted from their conservative predecessors, loosened norms, and started a thought revolution we still feel today. By doing this, Boomers created their own set of values that eventually dominated the culture, including feminism, looser sexual norms, and anti-war sentiment.

Most generations do this to some extent. And the most recent generation to get a name and distinct brand, the Millennial Generation (born 1980 to about 2000), is no different.

But I reject this categorization for those of us born from 1980 to 1985.

I am no Millennial.

And many of my friends born in that time frame are very different than the freshmen when we were seniors.

I was a professor to college Millennials.

I have “friends” who are true Millennials. And I put that in quotes, because I don’t actually consider someone who has no sense of responsibility, decency when she lives with you, or basic human respect to be a friend. But I can’t be too upset with her—who put the blame on me for being “too domesticated” after calling out her disgusting bullshit (and one specific, very non-domestic event)—because she sparked the inkling that i am no damn Millennial.

Millennials have some identifying traits, such as their absorption of technology into their daily lives, as well as an indomitable confidence both in the future and in themselves — perhaps to a fault.

That last part brings up some of the more unflattering traits of the Millennials, one that is an important distinction between my target group and the rest of them.\

Yes, us 80-85ers grew up with technology. But we also grew up A WHOLE LOT without it. I mean, people born in 1980 were in college before cell phones were even a thing.

And we were the group who did Field Day before everyone got Participation Ribbons.

We know that there are winners and losers, and we’re not patting anybody on the back who doesn’t deserve it.

That Millennial entitlement. That sense of being special.

I had a coach tell me that I was only special to my mama. And, guess what… I shut the hell up and went along my merry way. Nobody was sued. I wasn’t emotionally traumatized.

“Helicopter parents”? Psshh… my mom had a career she wanted to build, JD Power & Associates awards to win. I have friends born in 1983 whose moms I heard say that if they wanted their laundry done, they better learn to do it.

Self-esteem? Do you see the first word int hat term?

And THAT’S why I’m no Millennial.

What’s in a name?

I’ve been trying to come up with a better name for my little niche of the so-called “Millennials”… because, seriously, I can’t stomach the label.

Off the top of my head:

  • The Fringe
  • Y2Kers
  • Millennium Falcons
  • Tech Boomers
  • Transition Team (pre- to post-tech)
  • Grandparents Who’ll Have the Oldest Facebooks

Do you have one?

Tweet me with your ideas!