The 70’s dude! A decade of confusion. A transition to dysfunction on a societal level that speaks to so much confusion today. The origin of the “me-llenial”! We just can’t seem to slow the train down long enough to see clearly, life is a blur.
I ain’t blaming women, You can’t really ever blame one group for a societies developmental dysfunctions, it takes a village. Woman however, changed the American family to a degree that no other facet of American life could. They went to work and had careers.
Woman in the 70’s responded to divorce rates, family structure, and economic autonomy by leaving the home and going to work. Prior to this time women as a whole stayed at home and maintained o home (which is not the same as a house) and raised children. Kindergarten was not yet a norm so children were at home until 6 years old learning in their homes and communities.
“Play dates” were an everyday thing. Cars with fathers pulled out of the driveway at 7am and the streets were filled with kids playing and Mothers talking. Naps were a necessity and at 4 or 5pm cars with fathers returned for dinner. This was the norm for most families.
I want to be clear that I’m not blaming woman. The economy was such that it became a necessity. Fathers either couldn’t make enough to maintain the middle class stature or just opted out and left for a loaf of bread never to return. Either way women had to step up and step out of the house for additional income.
There was no such thing as daycare, preschool, or head start. Most women relied on friends who used the babysitting money to supplement their own families income. A few daycares sprang up, but all you needed to be certified were a toy box, fire extinguisher, and a emergency services sticker next to your phone. This was not a great time for many children. In America.
These kids grew up to birth the “90 Babies” just around the technology boom. This generation of parents never were handed down the traditional parenting skills their parents experienced. Preschool, head start, and kindergarten became a norm and the main source of information for parenting.
These early childhood educators blurred the lines between children and students, even in some cases the authority over the child. Then the school starts to share the role of educator with raising children. So then we had parents educating their children while schools focused on their well being. Hell, everyone was confused.
So now we have the “me-llenials” and these babies are all confused. They can’t decipher whose role is what. The television and computer fill in the gaps with vulgarity and innuendo to the point sarcasm is viewed as a positive trait. Entertaining yourself through other folks pain is humorous, and drama within families is expected.
These babies are having babies and seem to be responding by wanting to do better than their parents or grandparents did. They track pregnancy from conception. They communicate at a level that’s painful for many older folks. They seem to see through the bullshit in a “this has been going on long enough” manner. On the front side of family life though, they are way out there.
These folks create genders, races, and cultures like apps on a smart phone. They experiment with all facets of life to an uncomfortable degree for many. This is what makes social media so entertaining and dangerous. Socially, politically, and culturally there are no safeguards to protect us from the degradation we see. Truth becomes subjective, reality is what you make it, and authority is viewed as a negative facet of life.
We can’t fix this overnight. This is gonna take a minute. There are many uncomfortable moments ahead. Now is the time for candor, not to be confused with being blunt. It’s a time for a leader, but they’re rare. It’s a time for honesty. Most importantly it’s a time for families to retreat to the dinner table and say “hold up”, we need to take a step back and evaluate what we’re doing. We need to reaffirm our roles as parents, children, and siblings. Before we go out that door again and step out into this dysfunction. We need to tighten up and reestablish and reaffirm what we stand for. No more co dependent relationships built on cultural fantasies.
It’s not over, but that rolls both ways. Americans are families. We are independent and proud. We are philanthropic at the lowest socio economic strata. We believe life is bigger than us. We need to start acting like that or the America that our grandparents rocked will be rolled right into a ditch.