I’m sitting at yet another dinner table with people who are all in their thirties. The person in front of me is talking about her two children and how hard it is to be part of a system that claims to help working mothers but then constantly sets impossible tasks they need to meet. The person next to me is maligning the fact that they are single and can’t afford a home by themselves even though they desperately want to move out of their parent’s house. The only thing we all have in common apart from our ages is how impossibly tired we are.
Constantly reprimanded by our elders for buying too many avocados and not saving enough money to buy Versailles and repudiated by Gen Z for being too old and out-of-touch, Millennials find themselves constantly playing a kind of piggy in the middle role in society, and it’s exhausting.
Described as soft and entitled by the Boomer generation, it’s pretty hard to see where they’re getting this information from given most of us were raised by them in a world where feelings were still portrayed as figments of imagination. I can’t even count the number of times I’ve been told by people in their sixties and seventies that depression isn’t a real thing and that therapy is for the weak.
Even as the COVID-19 pandemic was raging, the blame for holding underground parties was squarely placed at the Millennial door when I’m the first one who could tell you that I’m usually the oldest thing in the room at parties. When the weekend comes around, my counterparts are either trying to wrestle their children into submission or watching Netflix and quietly crying into their blankets while trying to find the will to go back to work on Monday. None of them are backpacking and following their dreams; they need to eat.
It’s a dire state of affairs. Here we are with all the expectations and dreams planted in us by our parents who told us we could do anything, slowly but surely coming to the realisation that we have been duped. The earth is dying despite all our recycling, people did actually get stupider and lazier thanks to the internet, no amount of saving is probably going to get us our dream house, and relationships are harder to sustain now than ever before. We truly are a lost generation trying desperately to find purpose in the roles our parents seemed to wear so lightly. No questions and anxiety for them; those things simply didn’t exist.
The next time you’re about to approach a Millennial to bash them, please be kind; most of them can’t even afford their daily cup of overpriced coffee anymore.