More and more of my millennial friends are cutting ties, to various degrees, with their baby boomer parents.
Millennials – those born roughly between 1981 and 2000 — see baby boomers — born between 1946 and 1964 — as behind the times, closed-minded, controlling and sometimes emotionally abusive.
Now in our 20s and 30s, we were the first generation to have access to the internet (and thus virtually all the information in the world) by high school.
We feel smarter and more enlightened than our parents, and if not for their sheer numbers, like we could’ve made their politics and lifestyle obsolete by now.
Many of us have children of our own now and are trying to parent by our instincts rather than cultural norms. We’re turning back to nature with breastfeeding, baby wearing, cosleeping, healthy food and natural medicine, instead of blindly accepting what commercials try to sell us. Many of us don’t even watch commercials anymore.
Unlike our parents, our generation doesn’t see psychotherapy and self-help books as quackery. In fact, we are taking it to the next level with somatic therapy, hypnotherapy and psychedelic therapy.
We are trying to heal our inner children, evolve and become happy, fulfilled people who live not only for their children, but for themselves.
We are simultaneously focused on becoming “better” parents than our own, and struggling to create our own identities as autonomous individuals.
We’re having fewer children to help make this possible.
We’re sorting through thousands of years of myths, lies and propaganda, trying to find the truth about who we are, where we came from and what we are doing here.
We’re not afraid of facing our demons or our ugly past. We’re not afraid of admitting we’ve made mistakes. We’re not afraid to question everything. We’re not afraid to turn the ship around.
We’d rather acknowledge uncomfortable and inconvenient truths than race to oblivion, as your generation, and the generation before that, and the generation before that, have been doing since the dawn of civilization.
Were trying to avoid falling victim to the Earth’s 6th mass extinction crisis and find our way back to the Garden of Eden, and sometimes it feels like we just need you to “get out of our way.”
We don’t mean that to be hurtful. We love you and are grateful for everything you’ve given us. We’re even grateful for the mistakes you’ve made for us to learn from.
We’re just asking you to let go of the control, just a little bit, and let us try something new.
It’s hard for us to come up with new ideas if we’re spending too much time trapped in old, unhealthy patterns of relating to you.
No offense, but you were the source of much of our childhood trauma, just like your parents were the source of much of yours, and we will be the source of much of ours.
Of course we can work on healing that trauma and reconnecting, but part of that comes in taking space.
Each time we take space away from you, we learn more about what we really want and who we really are. We become more well-rounded and whole.
In the end, maybe we’ll find out we’re not all that different from you, flower children. But for now we need to experience our own revolution for the evolution of humanity.
19 responses to “Why Millennials Need Space From Our Baby Boomer Parents”
Excellent article. My daughter hasn’t spoken to me in 2 years, and I understand.
So you think you can dismiss your parents so easily and without consequences? Your need for Estrangement from these people who cared for you often produces traumatic brain injury. Read up on what happens to your parents whose only shortcoming apparently is not to recognize your extraordinary genius.
I had my first child 35 yrs ago and as young mothers then we were going thru the same things younger moms are going thru now! We believed in natural childbirth and breast feeding and making our own baby food…..etc. etc!!!!!!!! There is nothing new under the sun! We were fighting for autonomy, uniqueness and peace just like you are. I think you should focus on what strengths and weaknesses you have personally and don’t blame your parent’s thoughts and beliefs. Your own children are going to go thru the same things when they are your age a point their fingers too!
no offense but boomers thought all of the same things as you are – breaking norms, experimenting with therapies, changing ways of rearing children – you seem to think you are the first generation to think these things – you’re not but your pseudo gratefulness is bullshit – just get out of your OWN way, no-one holds you back but you. a bit of effort would help and a good work ethic if that’s where you want to go – politics? the shit now is not all boomers but there are a lot of idiots that think the world owes them and the current crop of younger voters will not get into politics to change things and think that booing from the sidelines works – well it doesn’t – get your hands dirty, roll up your sleeves and quit whinging, didn’t your parents teach you the value of hard work? or did you not listen?
Weird, all the things you claim as millenial inventions were explored first by baby boomer hippies…
Ok. So this attitude and perspective used to be expressed by teenagers, usually grown out of by early to mid 20s. I hate to beeak it to you but when your kids hit the therapy couch, it’ll be you they are talking about, and the scars you’ve given them, trauma and neglect you’ve afflicted upon them. Just keep in mind, you wouldn’t have the digital age and the access to so much knowledge and wisdom at your finger tips without the creativity, ingenuity, and work ethic of those backward, ignorant previous generations. Don’t ask them to get out of the way, step up and prove yourself, and remain respectful and humble while doing so, because you’ve only got about 15 years before your children tell you to get your obsolete, ignorant self out of there way.
Absolutely agree with the comments that everything mentioned here and so much more, was in fact begun by the Baby Boomers and particularly, the Flower Child Generation. This includes things like Social Service programs that integrated services for the indigent and worked to end racism, active co-parenting with dad’s carrying their babies in fabric packs on their bodies to strengthen bonds,a return to breast feeding and natural childbirth… even in tubs of warm water with classical music playing,( I tried that one but the hospital wouldn’t agree), a return to whole food gardening, and the development of returning to plant based medicines, co-operative living, working with the energy of pyramids, crystals and minerals, and overcoming the horrors and shocks of the 60’s and 70’s by reaching out to experience and SHARE spiritual awakening…and sooo much more. Now all, really all of it being reclaimed as new by this young generation stumps me. What have they not learned about history? This is not the first article I’ve read so the lack of knowledge is clearly widespread. I will say that like our generation, the Millenials will eventually bump up against the rigid, destructive machine that has run our country from the early 40’s. At some point in order to survive within the machine one must adapt. This has been a sad reality for most, one we are still trying to change. I am hopeful this generation will pick up where we left off and find a way to overthrow it all for the greater good. Find a way to build on the structures of peace, and love for the planet and humanity that we initiated. But to generalize any generation as broadly as stated in this article and miss the incredible, even stunning contributions large segments of the boomers have made, is extremely counterfactual. It appears more of a personal matter than a generational one.
Hahahaha Oh My Word…. Give yourself a ‘slap upside of the head’ and get over yourself.
You’re exactly the kind of parent I’d cut ties with.
Not all the boomers were flower children. And not all millenials are as described above. If you look at pictures of the far right racists and the stadiums full of Trump supporters when he gives a speech, many are millenials who think they have found the answers. Every generation thinks it invented all the things you describe. There is too little love in the world to cut ties with people who are probably the only ones who will ever love you unconditionally. I have never regretted not having children and articles like this only remind me that I made the right decision.
It takes a very brave soul to allow such criticism.
While I may not agree on your statements I truly applaud you for being such a brave and honest soul.
I wonder how you can speak for an entire generation? And be so uninformed about the rest of us? I am 70, I have learned to speak only for myself. Still learning the new ways and amazed at the millennials quickening. We’re doing the best we can.
Lol like flies to shit, boomers can’t help but respond to any criticism wih incredibly unflattering indignation. Is guilt and shaming all you old toads know how to do?
Is it possible the author is being ironic? Is this is self-reflexive parody of the rush-as-fast-as-possible-up-the-Maslowian-Hierarchy of Needs-Pyramid-and-damn-the-torpdeos “Me” Generation? I sense a tongue may be lodged in a cheek. Surely, she can’t be serious.
ITT upset boomers who literally react the way the article said.
it’ll be 5 years this autumn that my mother told me she was cutting me off as a punishment, she thought I’d come running begging for forgiveness, I didn’t, 5 years
Loving all the self righteous boomers here. We obviously know our kids will be turning the same critical lens on us as parents which is why we are trying to be better as people and as parents. I’m fully prepared for my child to confront me with what they will percieve as mistakes I made as a parent. I’ll intently listen and try our best to understand her rather than deny her words to protect my fragile ego. All of my friends who have cut of their parents have tried, most even with a therapist as a mediator to tell their parents about the problems with their relationship. You guys can’t deal with the fact we don’t think you were perfect as parents. You think we owe you our respect and loyalty but it’s not 1950 anymore. Healing never happens because the boomer rejects their child’s feelings, invalidating them and damaging the relationship. Funny thing is adult children feel so free agar cutting of a toxic parents but the parent is ways sad/ mad and confused but still utterly unwilling to listen, in any meaningful way to what their kid has to say. I don’t get that.
Loving all the self righteous boomers here. We obviously know our kids will be turning the same critical lens on us as parents which is why we are trying to be better as people and as parents. I’m fully prepared for my child to confront me with what they will percieve as mistakes I made as a parent. I’ll intently listen and try our best to understand he and make meaningful changes to our relationship rather than deny her words to protect my fragile ego. All of my friends who have cut of their parents have tried, most even with a therapist as a mediator to tell their parents about the problems with their relationship. You guys can’t deal with the fact we don’t think you were perfect as parents. You think we owe you our respect and loyalty but it’s not 1950 anymore. Healing never happens because the boomer rejects their child’s feelings, invalidating them and damaging the relationship. Funny thing is adult children feel so free after cutting of a toxic parent but the parent is always sad/ mad and confused but still utterly unwilling to listen, in any meaningful way to what their kid has to say. I don’t get that.
Wow, how incredibly arrogant you are…but then again you are millenial.