I Am Not Bothered by Being Called a “Geriatric Millennial”


Have you heard of the term “Geriatric Millennial?”

I want to preface this post by saying when you were born does not reflect your worth as a person. Everyone is worthy. And everyone has traits associated with a generation.

Photo by Marvin Meyer on Unsplash

That being said, have you heard of the term “Geriatric Millennial?” An online article by Erica Dhawan coined the term for those born between 1980 and 1985 and sparked outrage. Much of the outrage, in my opinion, was missing the key point in her article. She states plainly that “geriatric millennials are best positioned to lead teams that will thrive in the hybrid workplace.”

I do not care if Gen Z and Millennials argue over side parts and skinny jeans. But I do care that they know when it’s appropriate to pick up the phone and speak to someone rather than sending a text or a poorly crafted email.

I do not care if Gen X and Millennials have differing opinions on participation trophies. But I do care that they both have patience with one another when a new software program causes anxiety for one person and the other person learns it in a matter of minutes.

I fall into this category of “Geriatric Millennial.”

Dhawan points out that “Geriatric Millennials” are the early adopters of technology. We spent our formative youth witnessing and using advancements in technology. We were the beta testers of the internet.

I mean, my kids look at me like I’m crazy when I try to explain to them that Google wasn’t a thing until I was in high school. I also remember the shock my parents had when I met people in person who I had first encountered on the internet and didn’t get murdered. We grew up watching Unsolved Mysteries. Their concerns were valid.

While I’m not thrilled with the term “geriatric,” I’m not going to troll the author on Twitter. I think she has a valid point. I’ve always identified with both Gen X and Millennials, and now I know why.

I was born in 1980.

Lookup any list classifying generations, and 1980 is usually on the cusp of the change. I was raised by MTV, played Atari and Nintendo, watched the first “reality” tv shows, and then easily transitioned into using a smartphone but actually using the phone function. I will gladly lead my team in my hybrid workplace. The workplace is getting more diverse, and that’s what drives innovation, problem-solving, and forward momentum. I wouldn’t want it any other way. *insert uncool laughing emoji here*

Originally published May 2021.

The opinions expressed in this post are those of the author. They do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of ABQ Mom, its executive team, other contributors to the site, its sponsors or partners, or any organizations the aforementioned might be affiliated with.


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