As a single mother of two young children, I rely heavily on babysitters to help me keep my life afloat. Unfortunately, a few weeks ago I was forced to fire a sitter who spent her nights renting $30 worth of pay-per-view movies in my living room, and inviting 6 to 7 friends over after my kids went to bed (which she insists wasn’t a party).
Although I’m fairly certain that her entire teenage generation is about two standard deviations below a normal IQ level, my kids are too young to stay home alone.
So, I’ve been forced to subject myself to a string of interviews — like the most recent one in which the girl I interviewed only broke eye contact from her phone long enough to ask me if I had Wifi. After thanking her for her time and walking her to the door, I used a permanent marker to cross her off my list.
Sinking into my couch in utter frustration, I started thinking about how spending 20 minutes with her was like babysitting a drunk friend on a Friday night. She was completely unaware of her surroundings, unable to hold a complete conversation, and I’m pretty sure she didn’t understand how to use our microwave.
And as much as I’d like to blame her parents for not raising her to the point of maturity, I can’t really do that because today’s entire teenage population appears to be one big box of dull crayons and this is why:
1. They use drunk-speak as proper English.
As of last month, bruh, hangry, mkay, butthurt, and awesomesauce have become proper English words approved by the Oxford Dictionary.
While linguists across the country are at war over introducing “fake” words to our dictionaries and the expectations of an evolving language, I’m going to join whatever side agrees that it would just be too strange for my boss to come up to me and say, “I know you’re hangry, but try not to be so butthurt, mkay bruh?”
2. They use acronyms to replace simple sentence structure.
Oxford is right — our language is evolving; in fact, it’s come full circle. What started out as humanity grunting at each other in caves, evolved into beautifully written documents with flowing cursive words.
And now we’ve come full circle in our language evolution and embraced the culture of our prehistoric ancestors with the addition of text speak.
KWIM? Didn’t catch that? Here, allow me to longhand that for you: Mkay kno wht I mean bruh? We’re basically back at the beginning again with the acceptance that we don’t need to use full words to converse.
3. They rely on autocorrect to fix all their typing errors.
Speaking of typing, who the hell even needs to know how to do that anymore? Teens these days don’t need to know how to spell or even how to correctly use punctuation; Microsoft Word will tidy up that document for them.
And if they can’t remember how to spell a word, autocorrect is all over that. And if they are too lazy to even go that far, voice text can handle everything just fine.
4. They no longer practice cursive as part of their school curriculum.
Who needs to be able to read the original constitution when you can simply email it to yourself in a PDF format? Apparently no one, says the 45 states across America that have dropped cursive writing from the curriculum.
With more people typing than writing, schools simply feel that the writing style is irrelevant in today’s world, and while I can’t really argue otherwise, it just seems wrong to not be able to read our country’s founding documents.
5. They want acceptance for all the wrong reasons.
Hey do you know what’s worse than accepting everyone for who they are? Accepting everyone for who they are.
I’m all for equal rights, non-discrimination, and religious freedom, but even that has a line, and watching Miley Cyrus gyrating on stage with her tongue hanging out is way over it.
Instead of teaching our teens to be proud of who they are and give the world a reason to respect it, we’ve taught them that they deserve respect for whatever the hell they want to do. Um, no.
Respect is earned, not given, and although I strive to be politically correct, some of these kids just need to sit down and shut the hell up because every person in America doesn’t need to hear you.
6. They idolize people who have no business being idolized.
Do you know who the most influential people in the world are? Whoever the hell the younger generation latches onto.
Forget Obama or the Pope! Here come Kim Kardashian and Donald Trump. While Trump may have a few more credentials than others, the fact that the only qualification needed for setting a social trend these days is a big ass and plumped lips, why are we expecting more from the next generation?
“Forget college, if you want to make an impact on the world, get the most followers on Instagram!”
7. They don’t have to strive to achieve anything, because they’ll just get a trophy.
In life, sometimes you suck. If you suck, you either try harder so that you don’t suck, or you find something that you don’t suck at and do that instead. Seems logical enough, right?
Apparently not, because these days we hand out trophies to every kid who signed up for the team, even if they sucked.
Sorry kids, we’ve failed you. At no point did we teach you to become motivated, how to put in effort, or kindly redirect you to an area in which your skills are actually a benefit to society. Nope, we just high-fived you and sent you on your way.
We failed you, here’s a trophy.
8. They use phone apps to learn basic life skills.
Why learn adult skills when there’s already an app for that? From learning to read a map, calculating a tip, planning a schedule, planning your meals, or even figuring out why a baby is crying, teens know they don’t need to actually learn those life skills because there’s an app for that.
Back in my day you needed to learn a skill or two to survive in life. These days you just need to know how to connect to Wifi.
The only saving grace we can count on for the next generation is that today’s teens probably don’t really need to learn how to mature, since I’m sure there’s an app for that.