People argue that kids today have never had it better. We're here to argue the opposite: that they're missing out on the same things you and I enjoyed as a kid.
A recent online discussion discusses parts of life that today's generation is missing out on. Here are some of the best answers.
Back in our day, we played outside until the street lights turned on, and our parents trusted us. Now, that's no longer the case, as one person points out: “Some parents track their kids 24/7. They have no real freedom.”
Another points out how social media may be affecting kids, saying “There's a handful of pictures and videos from my school years…..whereas there are some 13-year-olds right now who've already been recorded and tagged online more times than I have.”
2. Buying New Music In Stores
Remember when you had to buy physical copies of music? Some people sure do and actually miss it.
One person recalls “The anticipation of buying a CD for the music as well as the artwork and photos and thank you’s and all.”
Another agrees and mentions how they enjoyed looking through the booklet in the CD case and reading the lyrics.
3. Being Out With Friends Without A Cell Phone
For better or worse, parents can call or text their kids no matter where they are. Some people pine for the days when phones weren't in everyone's pocket.
One person recalls “That giddy feeling of freedom when you're going out as tweens/teen with your friends and your mom can't call or text you every 30 minutes to check up on you.”
Another responded, lamenting how they never had that opportunity. “I was born well before 2010 (late 90s) and still never really had this. Mom bought me a phone and made her text where wherever I was going from grade 5 or 6 onwards.”
4. Physical Photographs
Picking up a packet of physical photos from the drugstore is a special feeling these newer generations will never know.
That feeling of looking through old printed photographs simply can't be replicated by digital images. While physical photos still exist the magic of waiting for them to be developed has disappeared. But patience isn't something the current generation of children has instilled in them.
5. Good Children's Television
Not only did kids these days miss out on what many called the “best era of Cartoon Network,” another TV watcher felt the bar on kid shows has been severely lowered.
“Children's TV shows in general (here in Australia at least), I feel like so many shows are more sterile and dumbed down,” they wrote. “That could absolutely be my own bias talking but I feel like the shows I watched as a kid weren't afraid to teach me some life lessons.”
There was so much more to cartoons back in the day. In the 1980s, for instance, we had Masters of the Universe, Care Bears, ThunderCats, Dungeons & Dragons, Jem, M.A.S.K., Rainbow Brite, and more. Cartoons were much more colorful and virile and tended to convey important messages about life. The same can't be said about the children's television out today.
6. Not Always Being in Front of a Camera
Do you remember a time when everything you did wasn't documented by your phone? These younger generations certainly don't.
“This so much,” wrote one parent, who added: “growing up in the era of no smartphone is a godsend looking back.”
These days, children live their lives under constant surveillance. They must feel like they exist under a microscope. Think of all the embarrassing things you did as a child and imagine all of them were filmed by other kids and plastered all over social media, potentially going viral. Paranoia must run rife through the children of today.
7. The Early Internet
“The internet when it was young and beautiful,” said one person, with another adding, “The early wild west internet.”
They're so right. The internet was so much more wholesome and fun when it was a new thing. Now it seems so much more vitriolic. Bring back the days of dial-up – you all remember the noise, right?
8. Video Games Without Microtransactions
Remember when you just had to buy a game and that was it, no more buying content? Kids today probably don't. “I miss N64 days where you buy a game and it's complete with no further purchases required or even advertised to you,” wrote one gamer. “Such a more simple time.”
While video games have always been made for profit, they're cash cows on a colossal scale these days. To maximize enjoyment from the majority of games, players must constantly purchase add-ons, and downloadable content, meaning the initial outlay on the game in its original form was only the beginning of the spend. Frankly, it's extortion. Back in the day, once you had bought a game, you owned everything it would ever have to offer you.
9. Better Happy Meal Toys
Even McDonald's Happy Meals don't have the same appeal they used to.
We understand McDonald's reasons for switching to cardboard toys, but it's resulted in an inferior product. Happy Meal toys used to be a thing of joy; they were as good as the toys purchased in stores. Now they're cheap, lifeless, soul-destroying, needlessly complicated monstrosities.
Family trips to Blockbuster are another thing new generations miss out on.
“It may seem stupid,” wrote one movie fan, “but there was something just nice and comforting doing that each Saturday when it was our father's turn to have us for the weekend.”
Watching movies on demand, courtesy of streaming services certainly has benefits, but going to Blockbuster and choosing one (or more) was an adventure. The majesty of walking through those doors and seeing a world of cinema in front of you — the smell of the plastic, the thrill of physically picking movies out, the beauty of the cover art — that can't be replicated at home.
11. American Patriotism
One person answered that patriotism is in short supply in the younger generations. “In America, I would say a sense of patriotism. Regardless of if we should have gone to war, most Americans were pretty United and patriotic in the early 2000s.”
“I do miss that experience,” another added, “feeling like we're all united and pulling in the same direction, it was legitimately a beautiful thing to witness in the wake of such tragedy.”
It's safe to say that for the past few years, America has been more divided than it's been for a long time. While there have been periods in the past in which the country has been divided, most generations before this one have experienced periods of unity. Children born after 2010 have known nothing but division.
12. Confidence of Retirement
When I was growing up, retirement was a promise I knew I could count on. Kids today can't say the same thing.
Life is just so unaffordable at the moment — energy prices alone are making sure of that — so it's hard to put together a nest egg in preparation for retirement. Unless something drastic happens, that will not change any time soon. Our children could find themselves working until an unprecedented age by the time they reach the latter stages of their lives.
13. Human Connection
“Actual connection with others,” one person wrote. “Connection to them is texting or using social media.”
All too often these days, people have their heads buried in their phones, tablets, computers, or other devices. We're becoming incredibly antisocial, and it's sad to see. If things keep going as they are, it won't be long before human interaction is a rare occurrence – and that would be tragic.
A thread inspired this post.
This article was produced and syndicated by Wealth of Geeks.