Being almost 20 years old, I have lived through two decades. I witnessed the VERY end of the '90s, the entire early 2000's period, and now I have seen the 2010's almost all the way through. I was the kid who grew up watching Rugrats, watched Hannah Montana after school, to now watching Keeping Up With The Kardashians every Sunday night. I wore overalls as a baby which changed to Juicy Couture sweatsuits, which is now high waisted everything with a crop top. We take selfies every chance we get. We photograph every meal. Share our entire lives on Instagram and then watch other people's lives on Youtube.
And to the older generations, they don't get it.
Millennials and Gen Z get shamed for our "liberal and unique" personalities and lifestyles. For the generations before us, they don't understand why all of us are constantly watching Vine, screaming Ariana Grande lyrics, and ranting on Twitter 24/7. These are some of the things that define our generation. However, our generation is much more than pop culture and technology.
Our generation is more accepting of sexual fluidity, is racially diverse, and is very independent. We are environmentally aware and are striving to protect our planet. We are striving to make this world a better place. We want to be more accepting, more educated, and more open-minded.
Go back 50 years and life would be completely different. Races were separated. Sexual and gender fluidity was taboo or not even acknowledged. No one cared about recycling, composting, or self-sustainability. So, sure, my generation can't put down our iPhones, but my generation is probably one of the most influential generations and I'll take that.
I'm not trying to disregard previous generations. They went through some of the craziest periods in history. They dealt with wars, cultural economic depression, racism, slavery, and strict gender rules. Men worked and women were domesticated. People didn't spend money because of the lack thereof growing up. There wasn't much technology, really at all. It was a simpler time.
But do not forget, during the '60s, they loved afros and Elvis. The '70s loved bell bottoms and tons of tie-dye. The '80s was full of neon and big hair. These trends were of the times. They were exactly that... trends. I'm sure the Baby Boomers didn't understand Gen Y, just like how Gen Y doesn't understand Millennials. And, I'm sure Millennials are getting fed up with Gen Z. It's what happens. Time changes and commodities from your era just to fade into new commodities.
So, please stop shaming my generation for being obsessed with social media or loving Kylie Jenner a little too much. Let us take all the selfies we want. Let us express ourselves through art and sports. Encourage us to be whatever we want to be. It's our time now so let us enjoy it before time passes. We shouldn't have to be sorry for living through the times, like generations before we did.