Boomers and millennials are often pitted against each other because of their different opinions about many aspects of life. Boomers, or Baby Boomers, are the ones born between 1945 and 1965 who are now the older generation. Millennials are the people born between 1981 and 1996. Millennials are often the children of either Boomers or Generation X.
In general, boomers believe that millennials are often not the best decision-makers. On the other hand, millennials feel like boomers are out of touch with reality, especially with their parenting methods. Here are 15 mistakes boomer parents made that millennial parents swear not to repeat to their kids.
1. Comparing Your Children to Other Children
Boomers have always been competitive. They tend to compare their kids to other children, a big mistake that millennial children claim caused them self-esteem issues. Children will feel inadequate and try to live up to impossible standards they can’t achieve.
As a millennial parent, encourage your kids to shine in their way. Support them in working on their passion and strengths.
2. Overprotecting Your Children
Bubble-wrap parenting is an overprotection strategy that’s popular with boomer parents. As a millennial parent, you know it feels suffocating when you’re being coddled too much.
A balanced approach is ideal when raising children. You can promote their independence by giving them the space to make mistakes and learn from them without putting them in danger.
3. Using TV as Your Children’s Babysitter
Millennial parents consider TV as a possible educational tool you can use for your children. While boomer parents only use it for entertainment and to distract the kids.
You can do a bit of both and provide your kids with an entertaining way to educate them. With parental supervision, you can get them to watch TV shows teaching academic concepts like Math, Science, and even culture.
4. Ignoring the Importance of Mental Health
Mental health is a vital aspect that many boomer parents consider irrelevant. For millennial parents, it is an issue that requires discussion and
As a parent, you need to reinforce their mental resilience and self-care. You need to break the cycle that fosters anxiety and depression by creating an environment where your kids feel comfortable and safe to be themselves.
5. Invalidating Your Children’s Feelings
Invalidating your children’s feelings is a bad move many boomer parents make. Millennial parents try to teach their children how to express their feelings without fear of being judged.
Try to open the communication line between you and your kids. Teach them how to manage their emotions rather than hiding or suppressing them.
6. Serving Your Kids Too-Sweet Meals Everyday
Boomer parents love to feed their kids with sugar-heavy cereals. Millennial parents tend to be more interactive when preparing breakfast for their kids.
Instead of just pouring cereals, you can prepare a well-balanced meal with fibers and proteins. Cutting back on sugar will also be a healthy choice for your children.
7. Encouraging Gender Stereotypes
Gender stereotyping is popular among boomer parents, introducing traditional gender roles to their kids. Millennial parents loosen that restraint and try to be more accommodating when promoting gender concepts.
Instead of limiting your daughter to dolls and ribbons, you can provide more options through cars and robots. Don’t force her on dresses if she wants to wear pants instead. Breaking this stereotype gives children the freedom they need to explore their passions and interests.
8. Expecting Your Children to Blindly Follow You
Many boomer parents expect their children to follow their rules and opinions blindly. Millennial parents are more understanding and open to their children’s opinions, especially when there’s an objection to some of their rules.
Encourage your kids to look into the reasons behind your rules and decisions. Help them develop their critical thinking skills.
9. Dismissing the Relevance of Creativity
Boomers are prone to associating success with academics and steering their kids to interests they think will be useful investments for the future. For them, the arts are something that’s not practical to explore.
If your children are creative, do not discourage them from the artistic path. Support them in their passions instead of suppressing their creative side.
10. Teaching Kids to Be Overcompetitive
Boomer parents are highly competitive and tend to overemphasize the importance of winning to their kids. Millennial parents are breaking this cycle by teaching kids to focus on the experience.
You can help your children thrive by fostering a nurturing environment that promotes learning rather than winning. This approach will make the competition more compassionate and understanding.
11. Disregarding Work-Life Balance
Baby boomers are hard workers, but they are also often away from home and their children. Millennials promote work-life balance in their lives and incorporate this concept in raising their children.
Make sure to schedule quality time with your children as much as you dedicate time to work. Balancing work and play is the key to creating time for your kids and ensuring you’re not too busy to be in their lives.
12. Lacking Boundary and Supervision
Some boomer parents allow kids to roam around unsupervised, with the minors disappearing for hours in the neighborhood. This free-range parenting lacks boundaries and supervision, which doesn’t do well for millennials.
While it may help develop independence, your kids may be open to dangers you’re unaware of. The risks and anxieties are not worth it.
13. Not Giving Kids Financial Education
Boomer parents are fond of telling kids that “Money doesn’t grow on trees” without giving practical financial lessons. Millennials are more hands-on in providing financial education to their kids.
You can teach your children the basics about money, including the benefits of saving, budgeting, and investing. Teaching them charitable giving is also a good move.
14. Getting Annoyed When Children Ask Questions
Children love asking questions, and boomer parents are not fond of that. Millennial parents encourage their children to ask questions so as not to discourage their curiosity.
Answer your children’s questions as honestly and directly as you can. If you don’t know the answers, be honest and say you don’t know it, and you can try to find out together. Don’t tell them not to ask so many questions.
15. Criticizing and Putting Labels on Children
Baby boomers often put labels on children, calling them names related to their criticisms, especially comments about their physical appearance. Calling the eldest the smart one or the youngest the pretty one can put a wrench in the kids’ self-image. Millennial parents avoid boxing their kids into stereotypes.
Avoid mental image issues by allowing your children to explore their selves and personalities. Teach them the importance of body positivity and self-image.
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Experience: Marisa Bolivar is a content writer with 10 years of experience in creating blogs and articles across different industries on the web. She has explored many niches in her years working as a content specialist with her favorite zeroing on entertainment, from books to movies and TV shows. Marisa is also a bookworm, who has a fondness for personal improvement and philosophical authors like Paulo Coelho and Mitch Albom.