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    Wild by Cheryl Strayed

When generations attack

21 Feb 2012

Lately, I’ve got no tolerance for this expression:

“In my day…”

I hear it all the time from women whose babies flew the coop 30 years ago.

I’ll give you three (very true) recent examples:

“We’ve gone overboard on safety. In my day we didn’t have car seats.”

[Seriously. You're going to argue that car seats have crossed the line? This one came from my Oma, by the way. After making this statement she told me a story about how my father's head once went through her windshield when she pegged her breaks at an intersection. She was not being sarcastic.]

“In my day we smoked cigarettes so our babies would have lower birth weights.”

[I had no idea how to respond to this. She was being 100 percent serious.]

“In my day women didn’t work when they had babies.”

This last one really chapped my ass, not just because her tone was judgmental, but because when I replied, “Some families need two incomes,” she replied, “In my day we knew how to save money.”

Well guess what Ethel? It’s MY DAY. And in my day we make money so YOU can collect Social Security.

4 Responses to “When generations attack”

  1. 1
    Gracia Says:

    I’ve been having serious issues with that same sentence… “in my day we drank some wine every night so we would sleep better while pregnant” “in my day we ate whatever and look at your mother, she came out fine” “in my day we didn’t take any extra vitamins and nothing bad happened”… well, guess what? things DID happen. Just because they didn’t happen to your kid it doesn’t mean that they didn’t happen. And actually, they happened a lot more than today, so maybe we’re doing something right. And now I’m off to drink a cup of coffee that I’ll probably talk about to my granddaughters when they are told not to drink caffeine at all during pregnancy… Guess what, in my day, I’m drinking coffee and both me and the mini parasite in my uterus are perfectly fine.

  2. 2
    Ro Says:

    I’m pretty sure there’s a country song along these lines…something about lead paint on cribs!

  3. 3
    Heather Says:

    I hate people.

  4. 4
    Meg (MIMI+MEG) Says:

    Baaaaaa haaaa. I love your Oma’s honesty! And her unapologeticness, pretty sure that isn’t a word. But you know what I mean.
    I do think we have gone a little overboard, but not with smoking or car seats :) Kids are WAY too spoiled and think they are entitled to everything. It really annoys me when they interrupt their parents while their parents are in mid-conversation with other adults.
    Have you read Bringing up Bebe? Just curious. :)

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