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Anita18
12-23-2010, 10:41 PM
My father died when I was 11. I got a paper route shortly thereafter to earn my own spending money. When I started high school, I worked on a tobacco farm in the summer to pay for books and clothes by suckering plants for the huge sum of $20 an acre. We could do one acre per day. When I was 14, I lied about my age and got a job working part time as a waitress. Throughout my junior high school and high school years I had part time jobs to basically pay my own way.

I also did all of the digging and weeding in my Mom's kitchen garden because she had arthritis and couldn't do the heavy work as well as babysitting when my older brothers and sisters were going out.

Had I not bought and sewed my own clothes, I would have received my older sisters' hand me downs which had been stylish in the 1950's but by the time I started high school, were extremely dated.

I had no sense of entitlement and knew that I was going to have to work my butt off for everything I wanted in life. And when I was going to protests and marches, my mother was cheering me on. Bless her heart.

What I heard over and over was that I was too damn independent and determined to do things my own way.
Maybe that's why we think you have ridiculously high expectations from other people? :lol:

You sound exactly like my sister, who's a classic type A personality self-motivated overachiever. :) It's greatly commendable, but not everyone is up to the task, and I think it's unfair to expect it.

bobalina77
12-24-2010, 03:50 PM
I can remember being 13 or so and dreading going to my grandparent's house because all they ever talked about was friends of theirs who had died. It was depressing. As I got older I started loving going there because they started talking about what their lives were like when they were younger. It could have been because my Grandma had developed alzheimers so it was all she could remember.. but it was cool listening to their stories.

My grandpa actually mellowed out as he (and we) got older. I don't know if it was because he just had no patience for little kids or what.. but he got to be a lot more fun lol. I had no idea he even had a sense of humour until I was in my late teens early 20's lol!

It makes me sad that Peanut will never know them.. they were amazing people.

KatieC
12-25-2010, 01:22 AM
When I was about 14 and visiting out west, I had an opportunity to sit with a great uncle and his cousin (my first cousin twice removed). They were both around 76 years old at the time, and my uncle started a bit of a rant about the "young people of today". I was getting annoyed til I happened to glance at my cousin. He was snickering behind his hand at all the blather my uncle was giving out. I fell in love with that cousin on the spot, 76 or not. Only met him once after that, but he was a darling man.

Ozzisk8tr
12-25-2010, 02:43 AM
Oh boy, I could go on and on about getting older. Some good, some not so good. I'm 66 and was widowed 5 years ago, the following year I lost my best friend and figure skating buddy, then my dear cousin a year later. I've now found a great man who I re-met at the 50 year high school reunion 2 1/2 years ago and we are together now ;) So in spite of all the deaths, life still goes on if you want it to. My personality hasn't really changed although I'm wiser now whether younger people want to recognize it or not......they need to make their own mistakes anyway. That's how you learn about youself and grow. My belief is that pain is conducive to personal growth.

On the good side:

I like myself more and doubt myself less.
I don't sweat the small stuff and try to stay positive. If you don't like my perkiness, then tough titty.
My boyfriend and I finished my basement and put a nice dance floor in so we can dance.......(we like to jive, but to slower music these days)
I went back to school after my husband died and got a diploma from a Community college, and I'm proud of that.
I still really like sex :D
I refuse to wear pants or skirts with elasticized waistbands :lol: and I put my makeup on every day and do my hair........the vanity remains.....even though I'm not the beautiful, thin young thing I once was.
I love socializing and being with those I like and love, and try to stay active.
I like that I can still eat chocolate and potato chips on occasion.....yummy:)
It's worth the effort to be polite and considerate to people of all ages. I've learned that when I'm not, I do regret it, and I'm not enamored of having regrets, so it's best not to collect them.
I could go on and on, but I'll stop here.

On the negative side:

One thing that has bothered me but does less and less is that the older you get, younger people look through you not at you............it's almost as though you take up space but are of no consequence. But then again a lot of younger people all look the same to me too.:)

I really feel sorry for those people who resent getting older. I would think it takes the joy out of living. We are only hear for a short while........why not make the best of it.;)

Post of the year for me. I so want to hug you right now. :) Thank you for making my Christmas day.

Dragonlady
12-25-2010, 06:11 AM
You sound exactly like my sister, who's a classic type A personality self-motivated overachiever. :) It's greatly commendable, but not everyone is up to the task, and I think it's unfair to expect it.

I don't expect others to do that, but I do expect that by the time a child has decided to leave home, be it to go to school or move into their own apartment, they would be capable of shopping for their own personal care items. If my kid called home for shampoo, I'd be telling her to go get it herself.

Anita18
12-25-2010, 09:34 AM
I don't expect others to do that, but I do expect that by the time a child has decided to leave home, be it to go to school or move into their own apartment, they would be capable of shopping for their own personal care items. If my kid called home for shampoo, I'd be telling her to go get it herself.
Well I think there are degrees of it. My aforementioned roommate had no idea she was so spoiled - she wasn't bratty at all, she was actually incredibly nice, but she just had skewed expectations of boundaries. She's an only child who'd been coddled her entire life. Her mom thought nothing of sending her things when she needed them, which included FedExing her a new cell phone when she broke hers. Yes, and body wash she could have gotten at Target. :lol: I'm sure that if she had been raised differently, she would have been way more independent.

My aunt would certainly be telling her sons to go get toiletries themselves, but she'd think nothing of taking over their job searches or cover-letter writing for them. (In contrast, my roommate was academically independent.) I have another uncle who helicopter-parents his only daughter, tutoring her every day for the LSATs or MCATs or whatever prep test she decided she needed to take. And would probably send her toiletries even if she didn't ask. :lol:

Baby boomer parents of your generation are the ones raising the entitled children you speak of. ;) Sure, some are inherently bratty, but I think most were raised that way.

Now the question is, what happened in the boomer generation that prompted them to coddle their children in this manner?

Prancer
12-25-2010, 11:34 AM
Given the advantages and opportunities available to today's generation, I have difficulty understanding what's taking your generation so long to get their act together.

Because the more complex a society is, the longer it takes the young to mature. The fact that they HAVE those advantages and opportunities is a large part of the reason it takes them longer to grow up. They have so many choices--and we've all encouraged them to take advantage of them. The fewer choices you have, the faster you get on with things. That's true of anything, including growing up.

Traditionally, adulthood has been measured by specific milestones--getting a job, getting married, having children, owning a home. And what do we tell our kids? Don't get a job right out of high school; go to college and major in something that will provide you with interesting work. You can be anything you want to be; don't settle. Don't get married right away; wait until you have had a chance to experience the world and you know yourself. Don't have kids until you are financially stable. Don't buy a house until you have a big downpayment.

And before we go on, yes, I do realize that some of you have managed to reach responsiblie adulthood without doing all or even most of those things, and that there are people who experience those things and do not grow up, yadda yadda, but if we are dissing the "youth of today," we are already speaking in broad generalities about generations, yes?

So why grow up? There's no rush on any of this. And it's not as if the baby boomers are in any hurry to grow up, either; look at all the industries that make money off trying to make us all think we are still young and cool. Fifty is the new thirty, right?

DAngel
12-25-2010, 03:00 PM
I don't expect others to do that, but I do expect that by the time a child has decided to leave home, be it to go to school or move into their own apartment, they would be capable of shopping for their own personal care items.

You don't think most can?:confused:

Holley Calmes
12-26-2010, 04:29 AM
Post of the year for me. I so want to hug you right now. :) Thank you for making my Christmas day.

Ditto from me. Bravo.

SoNaoWat?
12-27-2010, 03:27 AM
My parents are only 58 and 59, but they are pretty similar to the way they've been as long as I can remember: My mom is a generally happy, young-at-heart, energetic, loving giver. My dad is a generally negative, critical, older than his years, fall asleep in his recliner in front of the tv, dwell on younger days and lost friends kind of person.

On the other hand, my mom is still in pretty good health, although she seems to get diagnosed with some new -itis every day. Dad had to take an early medical retirement from the same place my mom is getting ready to retire from (a Michelin tire plant) because he had several surgeries and injuries, etc. He has been a school bus driver for the last few years, driving his morning and afternoon routes, and spending a great deal of the time in between half-asleep in front of the tv.

I think it's pretty accurate that how you are when you're younger is how you'll be when you're old, only intensified.

Unfortunately for me, I'm afraid I'm too much like my father, and get more like him every day. I struggle to have my mother's energy and zest for life, even at the relatively young age of 38. :(

Some of the responses to this topic have made me think about Jessica Stanley's graduation speech in the Twilight: Eclipse movie. She was telling her classmates to take their time, explore things, make mistakes, etc. Most commencement speeches are about "make your mind up and get it done. Decide your dreams and then do them." Anyway. Just a rambling connection I made there.

barbk
12-27-2010, 04:12 AM
I have several friends in their 80s -- one just turned 90 -- and I like spending time with them because they're interesting, engaged in different activities, and rather strictly do no go on and on about physical ailments. My MIL, on the other hand, can't be in a conversation with anyone (even someone she just met two minutes earlier) without starting the litany of physical ailments. She can't understand why very few of her friends visit her anymore. She's also deeply angry about things her brothers (who have long since died) did seventy years ago. It isn't pretty.

snoopy
12-27-2010, 02:20 PM
Because the more complex a society is, the longer it takes the young to mature. The fact that they HAVE those advantages and opportunities is a large part of the reason it takes them longer to grow up. They have so many choices--and we've all encouraged them to take advantage of them. The fewer choices you have, the faster you get on with things. That's true of anything, including growing up.

So here is an analysis of why the youth of today are taking longer to grow up. They have, as a group, more choices than in the past. Great. Makes a lot of sense. Could be more factors involved as well, some pleasant, maybe some not so pleasant.

For all the angst expressed on stereotyping (and I realize this is just about THE sacred cow of the age)……this type of analysis is based on that exact thing - “kids today take longer to grow up”. To come to the conclusion above, the first premise ‘ “the stereotype” had to be considered. The recognizing of some trend and looking for some causation.

We can quibble about wording and intent – and maturity and intellectual capability have a part to play in how these things come across - but IMO just about everyone recognizes and uses stereotypes to some extent. And it is not necessarily a bad thing – it is how it used that is important.

Dragonlady
12-27-2010, 06:29 PM
A "carefree" adolescence is a relatively recent invention. In the past, children were expect to contribute to the family as soon as they were physically able. With no electricity or modern conveniences, people had to work very hard to maintain a household and care for families. Cooking required firewood for the stove. Water was pumped from a well. Doing laundry was an all-day event using scrub boards and a lot of physical work. Throughout the summer, fruit and vegetables were canned and preserved for winter eating. Clothing was sewed and repaired by hand. For farm families, children helped with the daily chores and field work.

Modern conveniences and household applicances have given people more leisure time than they ever had in the past, and childhood was extended into the teenage years, but in recent years, there has been a growing trend for children to return home after college and not leave - for years. Adolescence is now being extended into the 20's. This phenomenom has been noted in a number of articles in the mainstream press over the past few years.

Someone said that the Baby Boomers are responsible for this. A number of the articles I've read have blamed Dr. Spock and his book "Baby and Child Care", which was published in 1946 and is one of the biggest selling books of all times. It has been suggested that Dr. Spock's theories have encouraged permissiveness, narcissism and an expectation of instant gratification. Sounds pretty much like the Boomers, their children and their grandchildren.

Aceon6
12-27-2010, 09:10 PM
Now the question is, what happened in the boomer generation that prompted them to coddle their children in this manner?

I see a couple of things that changed for my late-boomer friends that contribute to the lack of independence in their kids.

First, the suburbs. In the late 70s/early 80s lots of them moved to bedroom communities. The distances between houses and the distance to recreation meant that they had to drive their kids everywhere, so the parents and kids were always together. (Of course, the obsession with child kidnapping fed into this, and even kids who could transport themselves were being escorted.) A generation earlier, most kids walked or rode bikes to activities and many of those activities had chores associated with them. For example, if we needed milk or bread, I was assigned to pick it up on the way home from school or dance class.

The other factor I see is that many waited to have kids until they felt they could afford a certain lifestyle for them, and, therefore, the kids have never seen their parents struggle. I don't think my friend's kids have ever seen them wrangle a budget or say no to anything. By contrast, I think I learned a lot about independence from watching my mother make choices. Mortgage first, then the utilities, then the groceries and, only then could we think about spending money on things we wanted. While I resented it at the time, it gave me a good foundation for when I moved out on my own.

Aussie Willy
12-27-2010, 11:30 PM
I see a couple of things that changed for my late-boomer friends that contribute to the lack of independence in their kids.

First, the suburbs. In the late 70s/early 80s lots of them moved to bedroom communities. The distances between houses and the distance to recreation meant that they had to drive their kids everywhere, so the parents and kids were always together. (Of course, the obsession with child kidnapping fed into this, and even kids who could transport themselves were being escorted.) A generation earlier, most kids walked or rode bikes to activities and many of those activities had chores associated with them. For example, if we needed milk or bread, I was assigned to pick it up on the way home from school or dance class.

The other factor I see is that many waited to have kids until they felt they could afford a certain lifestyle for them, and, therefore, the kids have never seen their parents struggle. I don't think my friend's kids have ever seen them wrangle a budget or say no to anything. By contrast, I think I learned a lot about independence from watching my mother make choices. Mortgage first, then the utilities, then the groceries and, only then could we think about spending money on things we wanted. While I resented it at the time, it gave me a good foundation for when I moved out on my own.
I think this point has a lot of validity. I know my nephews and neice have a very different foundation to where I came from where everything seemed to be a struggle. Money was definately an issue as I missed doing a lot of things other kids did because of money. However I really appreciate the things that my mum (my parents separated when I was twelve) in particular sacrificed for myself and my sisters in order for us to play sport or do music.

My nephews and niece really do get what they ask for but have very little concept of what has gone into getting those things. Although one of my nephews is quite funny with my mum (his grandma) as she will offer to buy him things and he will tell her he doesn't need them and not to waste her money - now that she can afford to buy things!