So, you may have heard entire sections of western society being branded into groups based on their birth date. There are the Baby Boomers (my parents), so called because at the end of the second world war everyone wanted to make babies to celebrate. There are Generation X, then Generation Y or the Millenials. But, by my counts- I’m none of them. So what am I? Based on some hazy research, I’ve decided I’m Generation Z. (So what’s next? A?)
I then discovered this site www.afterthemillenials.com – which is talking about the same sorts of things. I found that in the US there is a movement to name us ‘The Homelanders’ which obviously I find.. ridiculous. It only fits if it alludes to enjoying the TV series Homeland rather than feeling patriotic, which I .. don’t. I don’t think many people actually do, over here in the UK. And do this generation in the US feel it either, reeeally? Isn’t that more.. those who actually saw 9/11 etc with adult eyes? I was 8. I don’t remember much about it. The other potential name is the Plurals- which I find much easier to understand. So called because we have plural identities; online/offline, and because of the increased acceptance of different races, genders and cultures. That is a label I don’t mind carrying.
I also found it interesting to view what is supposedly the most important thing in life to each group. I have long thought that there is definitely a move towards the importance of family over a career, which means my parents don’t really understand their own children. My parents both established their (incredibly hardworking) careers then got married after they were 30, as a sort of afterthought. Their friends were the same. They have never stopped working, and never will. My eldest sister got married just before she turned 21, and has 3 amazing daughters. Different goals in life. (And I’m firmly with my sister on this one). I’m aware that’s anecdotal evidence though. But there are plenty of people of think the same; www.earlymama.com is a whole community devoted to those who had children before they were 23 or so. It discusses the strange feeling of being both ‘traditional’ as in from the 50s- getting married young etc, but also totally against current norms- i.e. getting married at 28 etc because you’re still trying to pay off your student debt. Most of that community are in fact Millenials though- not Generation Z, as I feel I am. I wonder what will happen to the average age of marriage and births, as time passes.
But surely it’s impossible to separate people into groups like this- especially over different countries? What do you think? Does it matter, even?