Gen X'ers Are Revealing Some Of The Foolish Things That They Have Heard Young People Say About Growing Up In Their Generation

Last summer, I did a post about an old Reddit thread where Gen X'ers shared times that younger people lectured them about Gen X things — even though they hadn't lived through it.

"Gen X'ers Are Sharing The So Historically Inaccurate Things Young People Have Said To Them That They Had To Do Some Generationsplaining"

Well the post got LOTS of comments from BuzzFeed readers, who shared their own similar experiences. So I decided to round up some of the comments along with responses from the original Reddit thread to put together a brand new list of things Gen X'ers were "generationsplained" about:


1."Having some kid tell me that nobody really watched X very popular '90s movies (that were among the biggest movies of their respective years 🙄)."

Screenshot from "Pulp Fiction"


Miramax / ©Miramax/Courtesy Everett Collection

2."Gen X high school history teacher here. The things kids do not understand about what their parents lived through in the '70s/'80s/'90s is hilarious and infuriating. Had a 16-year-old student scream at me about how 'I couldn't understand!' and 'I didn't know what I was talking about!' and 'It's not like you listened to this music!' — this after I noticed he was reading a biography of Kurt Cobain, Heavier Than Heaven, and asked if he was enjoying it."

Courtney Love and Kurt Cobain with their daughter Frances Bean

3."I've literally had arguments with Gen Z over how landlines worked, period. 😂"

A young girl using a landline phone
Nbc / NBCUniversal via Getty Images

4."I explained to my kid that we didn’t have 9-1-1 in my small hometown until the mid-'90s, and she thought I was making it up."

a person dialing 911 on a phone
Summitview / Getty Images

5."Explaining to me what went wrong in the 2000 election, and yeah, I was there, I watched it happen in real time, junior."

A woman holding up a card that four men are leaning in to look at
Robert King / Getty Images

6."Once had a kid tell me I was lying when I said I went to a Nirvana concert when I was in high school. He looked me dead in the eye and said that’s not possible since Kurt Cobain died in the '70s. I just remember laughing until I was crying."

Nirvana onstage
James Crump / WireImage

7."Talking about Nirvana. I mentioned the word 'grunge.'"

Screenshot from "Singles"

8."My Gen Z niece didn't know what a payphone was. Mind blown when she learned that her mother and I had to put money in a slot to call our mom on the street instead of whipping out your own phone. She also didn't believe us when we told her cellphones back in the '90s were astronomically expensive and only for the super rich people."

A woman using a payphone and giving the peace sign
Jena Ardell / Getty Images

9."After Missy performed at the Super Bowl, I remember seeing a tweet about how great it was to see Katy Perry supporting new artists, and they bet this 'new' rapper was going explode in popularity thanks to Katy Perry. 🤣🤣"

Katy Perry and Missy Elliott at the Super Bowl
Jeff Kravitz / FilmMagic. / Getty Images

10."I recently had this conversation with my friend's daughter about 'Fast Car' covered by Luke Combs. She was wondering why he said 'check-out girl' and thought it was a mistake NO ONE caught."

Closeup of Tracy Chapman

11."I posted one of MY OWN pictures from 1991, and a redditor was all 'AHA!' and told me they knew the picture was actually taken in the '80s because of the hairstyle (and very likely their viewing of Stranger Things). Obviously, there was no sharp cutoff at the changing of a decade, so in 1991, women still had '80s hair and fashion. It's not like the calendar ticks over to the new decade and everyone throws out all their stuff and starts over; that shit happens gradually."

Cindy Crawford
Ron Galella, Ltd. / Ron Galella Collection via Getty Images

12."I admit to getting tired about hearing how easy it was for me to get through college and such 25-ish years ago. I also remember the '70s and '80s, and amazingly, my parents could not afford a giant house with one person working as a coffee shop attendant. Every generation has some hardships, and today's young people have been screwed over in some ways, but they go way overboard with how easy it was for everyone before them."

Closeup of a young man in a library

"I was there. I literally have worked since I was 12. It was not some magical paradise."


Comstock / Getty Images

13."One thing I’ve found interesting from younger generations recently was the idea that boomers have always been old and have always been in power politically. Like, I’ve heard people talk about events in the '70s and '80s under the assumption that it was the boomers who controlled everything (or even back to the' 60s). Even something like Watergate was supposedly with boomers in charge. When in reality it was the World War II, Greatest Generation like Reagan (and silent generation) who dominated politically from the '60s until the '90s (and there were a ton of politicians from those generations that stuck around forever)."

Ronald Reagan


Diana Walker / Getty Images

14."I had a young (in her 20s) bartender tell me that she was not 100% convinced 9/11 happened. As someone who was on 11th St. and University Place when the second plane hit, I assured her it did, in fact, happen. She still doesn’t buy it."

A 9/11 memorial
Drew Angerer / Getty Images

15."My son came home from high school one year and pulled out his phone so I could hear this great new band: Aerosmith."

Ron Pownall Photography / Getty Images

16."I had some teen tell me there was no way viral videos existed before YouTube or the internet. I patiently explained shows like America's Funniest Home Videos and people sharing bootleg VHS copies of things like Superstar: The Karen Carpenter Story were early ways people saw 'viral videos.' I don't think he could even grasp how people would discover things without the internet."

Closeup of Bob Saget holding a camera


ABC / Getty Images

17."I understand an artist like Madonna not feeling relevant to a kid today, but I recently had to explain to a very young coworker what a huge cultural impact she had and how much she changed music. But because my coworker didn't know much about Madonna, she simply dismissed her as being an 'artist who was popular and had hits in the 1980s.' That would be like me saying, 'The Beatles were some artists who were popular and had hits in the 1960s.'"

Closeup of Madonna


Picture Alliance / picture alliance via Getty Images

18.And lastly, "I had a young person explain mullets to me. I had one in 1989. I'm good on them."

Billy Ray Cyrus
Nbc / NBCU Photo Bank / NBCUniversal via Getty Images

Note: Some responses have been edited for length and/or clarity.