1. “You have such a good head on your shoulders.”
This is the ultimate, I know better than you, so much so that I can both identity and say to you that you are killing it while also lightly sounding like your grandmother on the day you got your first job. I’m proud of you, is what I’m trying to say here. I’m excited that you are smart and capable and literate and actually care about your future.
2. “I wasn’t doing that when I was your age!”
Whatever “that” is, it’s something that I was too criminally uncool or out of touch to do when I was your age. What I’m saying here is that I’m impressed and horrified at the same time, because whatever “that” is, is probably something I couldn’t imagine doing when I was your age and you are so young and how are you already so much more advanced than me? I’m upset, but I’m also just kind of in awe of you.
3. “OMG, I definitely wasn’t doing that when I was your age.”
Youths, you grow up too fast! Way too fast! Now, I know I continue to sound like your nana, but honestly, I just can’t believe you’re out doing something at your age that I had to work up to and only did probably last year. I’m not throwing shade, I’m actually, again, impressed and slightly horrified. Don’t hate me.
4. “What are the kids into these days?”
I’m only being a little snarky here because, really, I’m just feeling my age, because I have never used Snapchat or anything that you kids are into and I’m INSECURE ABOUT IT, OKAY? I used to be cool. I used to know things. This will be you one day!
5. “This will be you one day!”
This makes me feel better, because, one day, you’ll understand the feeling of my current feeling and, for some reason, that eases my own current pain. SORRY.
6. “Do you even remember [insert pop culture reference]?”
Because if you don’t remember this pop culture reference, it’s clear that I have just dated myself so bad that you’re looking at me the same way I used to look at my own parents when they’d listen to oldies all day.
7. “God, I’m old.”
Just thought I’d say what I imagine you’re thinking, sticks and stones, say it first before others can say it, what doesn’t kill me makes me stronger, all that crap.
8. “You’ve seriously never heard of [person that is my age and famous]?!”
Ok, but, really, now I’m just sad that this person I’m referencing is no longer relevant, because they were so great! Come on, youths! Don’t let our heroes die into irrelevant oblivion!
9. “You’re so young, enjoy it while it lasts!”
To be fair, even if it is kind of an annoying thing to hear, it’s TRUE. I enjoyed the hell out of my youth and, now that I’m in my late 20s, I’m so glad that I did. Having to be responsible and pay bills and do all this adult stuff means that I can look back upon my crazy days as a youth and be like, “I lived it up during that part of my life, huh?” As much as I’d love to continue living it up, I need my liver to sustain my body and should probably, you know, not poison myself with alcohol for funsies?
10. “Oh, what I wouldn’t kill to be [age younger than my age] again!”
I would drink without worry of the 3-day long hangover of Adult Years and I would generally rebel against everything and I am jealous of your still youthful age. While I’m not at all bitter about getting older (really, I’m not, it has its perks!), I still reminisce about simpler, more fun times of being like, let’s go to Mexico today, and actually, you know, going to Mexico that day BECAUSE WE ARE YOUNG AND IN LOVE WITH LIFE.
11. “Do you even know what I was doing at your age?”
Exactly what you’re doing right now, but without the added pressure of social media to document it at all times and also without being as sophisticated or grown-up as you are.
12. “Thank god I didn’t have Facebook or Instagram or any of this shit when I was your age.”
I can’t imagine how you youths go to high school or college with all this social media? I would have lost my mind. If Tinder existed when I was in college, I definitely would have gotten pregnant. No doubt. I have so much respect and awe for how you handle this new age, teach me your Internet ways!
13. “Oh, you’ll grow out of that.”
You will, sorry, but you will. We all did. It’s an adult rite of passage.
14. “Don’t even worry about being responsible yet, you have plenty of time!”
This is terrible advice and I don’t know why I keep saying it, but it feels like it should be said, because being responsible is the biggest buzzkill in the history of humanity.