Saturday, June 11, 2011

Bloated Self Image = Generation ME

The “millennials” — or those born between 1982 and 2002 — have been so “spoiled by parents who overstoked their self-esteem, teachers who granted undeserved A’s and sports coaches who bestowed trophies on any player who showed up” ... they won’t be able to handle the demands of the working world, especially during a recession. ..(sic) NY times, June 2011
Are you a guilty parent who form part of creating these "gremlins"; or do you, yourself, belong to this era of bloated self-esteem individuals, who think they can take on anything in the world without experiencing any pain or failure, ONLY because they can copy and paste, self-love themselves on their iPhones and use their beautiful faces as wallpapers?
I grew up making mistakes and being told constantly it was a mistake; when I pushed my luck, being punished for that mistake.  My parents taught me the value of integrity, unwavering faith, perseverance, resilience and that not everything is going to be handed over to me in a silver plate.  They allowed me to fail and nurtured me when I got back on my feet.  
However, in this self-indulgent times, I shudder at the thought of growing up with constant praise and materialistic entitlement.  I did not even think of myself as a stunner or pretty.  I wanted to be seen as smart and witty and generally knowledgeable. I wanted to be recognized for what I can do not how I can look on digital photoshop picture that will be the flag of my social network site.   I always believed that unless there was innate goodness in your heart, you did not deserve to live in a castle and kiss your Prince Charming.
Maybe it's just me, but this generation of "millennials" lack of humility and total irreverence is rather appalling, albeit it may be too soon to gauge their incapability to handle crisis situations and dire times, it worries me that their deeply rooted narcissism may get in the way of their capacity to rise above difficulties.  
However, is it their fault or have you heard of these affluent parents of the generation Me whose graduation presents range from cosmetic surgery to body sculpting coupons in 6 digits?  Well yes, we have created a bunch of self-confident kids whose self-indulgence is rapidly rising, but what happens if Daddy and Momma misses a beat?  I have particularly noticed behaviours of the Generation ME to range from the discourteous, to the the downright disastrous and somewhere in between.the "I am Special" and "Cocky as can be".  
I always declare to this date that I am a work in progress, but these kids push me aside to tell me in my face, well I have completed the work, you slow bitch!  I remember the days when no matter how you were raised there was the Hubris principle and on top of that, you get introduced to real life when it slaps you in the face, and things get real, as in REAL.  
It saddens me now, today, that "Narcissism" is a way of life and to behave differently and hold onto traditional values make you look like a pussy or to a lesser degree, a loser.  Selfishness is the name of the game:  "It's mine." "I was here first." "It's all about me." In order to make it to the top, crush your competitors (any which way you can, no rules and boundaries) and be America's or Britain's Next Top Model or something. 
We taught this Generation ME how to dream, the limitless possibilities in the universe, not to have any self-doubt in pursuit of what they can become.  But we should have also reminded them a bit to put their self-worth to a reality check; acquire a bit of humility and sensibility; failures are attendant to savour the sweetness of success, and a certain mindfulness that perhaps the world does not revolve around them. More importantly, it takes a certain selflessness to understand the real meaning of what have become almost elusive to them, life and love.


  1. wow words to lookup but was worth it.

    Maybe this is why I like people older than me?
    Oh yeah, that heart tree is so pretty ♥

    I am always thinking everyone is better than me so its like the opposite of what you wrote.

  2. Petite, I bump into samples of Generation 'Me' who are exactly as you have described and wonder if they are from some other planet? While I am still battling to prove to myself I am 'not that bad' this very generation stuns me with their "I am the best!" attitude.

    A very insightful piece of writing, as usual.

  3. I know what you mean. Unfortunately it seems difficult to raise a good kid these days because this behavior is infectious. Unless it's a true strong rebel personality, being put around people like you described day after day and then some more via mass media.. Well everyone wants to fit in. And if they then become this, it may take years until they realize the world isn't spinning around them.

  4. It seems we always view the up and coming generation as a bunch of spoiled brats. If I'm not mistaken, even Aristotle (may have been Plato) wrote of his fear for the future based on the younger generation. I do think that globalization and easy communication has made us more aware of the idiocy of those that will inherit the Earth. I think history will prove that they will eventually mature and go on to further destroy the Earth. There are still decent people raising decent kids out there...all over the world. They're just too busy living to post their lives on the social network pages, etc.

  5. Maybe I am not narcissistic merely eccentric, or are we destined to be mortal enemies of the modern social ladder. Where there can be only one CEO! Can we be Highlander's instead. I call dibs on being Connor Macleod. I don't care if he died in the old movies, because they're remaking the first one which means Connor is going to be back and better than ever. Actually scratch the Highlander thing. I wanna be Skeletor and you can be the Sorceress as we battle to be master of Castle Gray Suit with Pinstripe with adorable skull cufflinks. What? Castles are so passe, had to modernize it to a suit. Don't worry it comes with an optional skirt or pants bottom. I mean this is the suit of the universe we are fighting over here, it'll become whatever cut most fits you, and no I don't think a properly fitted suit is a waste of the powers of the Universe.

  6. Well I reckon the key is BALANCE. Except that the balancing act for parents and guardians are easier said than done. Nothing wrong with self-wroth and confidence, but to believe that you are always right and that you are "entitled" just because, I think that borders on breeding delusional and incompetent adults. My quarter storm parents were honest about their mistakes and brought me up in to think that you can actually fail, and perfection is not the goal, but "becoming" what I can be. Winning and fair play are complementary. Rudeness is unbecoming. And etc. etc. I think it starts at home or wherever the home is. I mean, I get called a retard by someone about 15 years my junior, I would still call that disrespectful.

  7. I see what you're saying. However, one has to remember that not all the 'millenial generation' are as described. I have to agree with TQR on that one.

    I'm very much a work in progress. How easy is it to be completely selfless?

  8. That's true RJ, as a matter of fact I just spoke with Jamie about that. However I am convinced, based on numbers, that the exceptions are a minority and would end up predominantly alone and exclusive. It is easier to yield to peer pressure at that age, I remember my own mistakes.
    Selflessness, as in my 100/0 principle, is for me a constant and daily challenge. I take it one day at a time and there are a lot of days I still fail miserably. Daunting task, but I have the tenacity of a pit bull terrier because I believe it's the way to love and to live.

  9. Millenials...I had never heard of that term, but it's perfect. I have four kids. Due to my own nature, which require I have a certain amount of time to myself (which ironically was the determining factor in my blog title: Absolutely Narcissism...I know, now I'm a little embarrassed to be leaving it in this comment after your very valid point about this generations narcissistic tendencies, yet, I am the mother who tolerates nothing from my kids. As a result, I am also the mother in the various groups, schools, extracurricular, who is considered strict and intolerant. Apparently, it's bad not to take your kid to Dairy Queen after their dance practice....??? Anyway, I think this post is spot-on. Would love to photocopy it and leave it on the bulletin board at my chidren's school. Not sure though how many parents would actually be capable of taking their heads out of their asses long enough to read it.

  10. So glad that my son - born in 86 - is not like that. At all. Have to say I don't much like the stereotyping of an entire generation when I know that not all of them think that way.
    As with most groups of people some spoil the image for all.

  11. Yes absolutely PB. When I was at school I had a stubborn determination not to 'follow the crowd', which of course had negative consequences for me, however I reckoned it was worth it at the time, and I think that has helped to give me the 'tenacity of a pit bull terrier' now I have moved on. Indeed it is a challenge...

    But I am willing to be part of that minority. At the end of the day, it's worth it.

  12. You did good once again. Thanks for this great post Psycho.
    I think it's good to outline the positive in your children but also to teach them values and that life requires respect and self-effacement. I don't think these words mean anything to this generation.
    Obviously, as always, some are going against the flow, ready to be themselves, live their life and never follow the crowd. But we all know from experience it takes strength and faith, qualities you can only gain by "selflessness"!

  13. oh sweety ... i wish i grew up in these times ... i need a little of the self esteem

  14. Check here when you have a minute for some award listing.
    Take care.

  15. I am a Generation X-er myself. My sister is a millenial. Everything you mention, that's her. I don't like her very much. She is self-justifying, cruel (although she claims truthful), obsessed with fashion and her looks, the perfect job, doing what SHE wants regardless... Yeah. I don't like her very much. There was a time when she was a wonderful little girl.

    Now, being a confused X-er, It took me 33 years to find my life's purpose, but I did. I am typical, you could film my life and make an 80's movie from it. Call it Nadya's day off with the Breakfast Club when Roxy came back hom all pretty in pink (long title, but that's the jist of it). And then we could go back to the future if you want to have fun.... ;p

  16. I am a proud Gen X-er Nayda and I find myself fortunate to be in between the generations to enjoy the best of both worlds. Can be confusing, but as Gen X-ers, we thrive on ambiguity, and we just rock it! Lovely to see you again.

    I hear yah Andrea. ♥

    And Marie, thanks for the recognition, it makes me feel like a "millenial." Millenial is a new word from the NY Times.

  17. I believe that every generation has had their fair share of narcissistic, self-centered juveniles. I also think that most of them do grow up in the end when that splash of reality does hit them in the face. Those that don't continue to stumble throughout life until they figure it out that their looks, their attitude that they had in high school or even junior high isn't going to get them any browinie points with the "older generation". It's like my dad always told me, "You will pays your dues in the end."

    So will they...eventually.


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