It doesn’t come as a surprise that we and our parents at our age are light-years apart. When it comes to our lifestyles, choices, and values, it seems like we were born on different planets. But there’s only one way to find out what exactly was so different for them than it is for us now, and it’s looking at hard evidence, aka photo albums.
With so much free time on our hands during this festive season in quarantine, the chances are you'll stumble upon one or two great pics that will bring out a blast from the past. And people on Twitter are all in for the "My Parents Vs. Me" challenge, posting snaps of family members where age is the only parallel you’ll find.
We have selected some of the cutest, funniest, and most illuminating posts that show how generations have changed. And after you’re done, don’t forget to check out Fashion Life’s previous post with "Me Vs. My Parents" memes that put a comical spin on these generational differences.
To find out more about the Me Vs. My Parents Challenge, Fashion Life reached out to a social media influencer who goes by the handle @Bloody5Iveezy. Iveezy’s post with the caption “My parents at 24 vs. me at 24” went viral, amassing 637.6K likes and 67.8K retweets.
“In my opinion, a big difference is how relaxed we are. We don’t care what people will say, it’s not all work. We have a big emphasis on living life, being happy, and having fun.”Iveezy also said that so many people related to the challenge because “we are all tired of the assumption that everyone wants to get married and have kids.”
For him, being a first-generation Mexican American, it’s almost taboo not to want a big religious wedding with lots of kids. “And my picture says the complete opposite: 'I’m just a 24-year-old Mexican that likes whiskey dressed like a unicorn and I’m not worried about anything.'”
When asked what kind of challenges Iveezy’s generation has to face, the social media influencer said it’s information. “In my parents' day, you were limited to who you knew and what you knew about them. Relationships are so hard now because someone will always tell your partner 'oh yeah, I’ve seen them before with so and so' or 'yeah, I’ve heard of 'em, have you seen his tweets?'”
“Besides the social aspect, our parents didn’t know what depression or anxiety was. They felt the symptoms, but didn’t recognize the condition,” Iveezy explained. Meanwhile, “my generation does and if I know I’m depressed, the last thing I’m worried about is marrying someone, so yeah, information is our double-edged sword,” he concluded.
The feeling that our millennial generation and our parents are worlds apart is not just all in our heads. In fact, the generational differences can be even bigger than one would expect.
Over the past 50 years, cultural, social, and economic shifts have paved the way to the modern day, where the youngest millennials have now become adults. Today, they make up the second-largest generation in the US electorate, hence the Democratic leanings compared to previous generations.
According to Pew Center, “Today’s young adults are much better educated than their grandparents, as the share of young adults with a bachelor’s degree or higher has steadily climbed since 1968.” 4 in 10 millennials have a bachelor’s degree or higher.
However, the financial well-being of millennials is very complicated. “The individual earnings for young workers have remained mostly flat over the past 50 years. But this belies a notably large gap in earnings between millennials who have a college education and those who don’t.”
Pew Research showed that millennial workers with some college education made $36,000, lower than the $38,900 that baby boomer workers made in 1982 when they were the same age.
And since millennials were hit hard by the great recession, they are much slower in forming their own households. As a result, many still can’t afford their own houses and are forced to live with their parents or in flat-shares. The young generation is also forming families much later than older generations, as the “Me vs. My Parents” challenge has shown.
Pew Center suggests that the share of adults who have never married is increasing with each successive generation. “If current patterns continue, an estimated one-in-four of today’s young adults will have never married by the time they reach their mid-40s to early 50s—a record high share.”