Top Ten Ways We Know We’re Turning Into Our Parents

I am a product of the Baby Boomers born in the Millennium Generation. I often fancy myself as a child still. Full of naivety and wonder.
However, lately, signs are pointing to the opposite.

While discussing the importance of comfortable shoes with my friend yesterday, I looked up at a mirror and saw my mother looking back at me. The same hand gestures, the same facial expressions, the same use of the phrase, “Out. Of. This. World!”- the Mom equivalent of “OMG!”, when describing an item that I like (an item such as brand new SAS loafers).

My mother is a beautiful and strong woman, I’d be so lucky to turn into her, but having overly-animated conversations with her about “The Housewives of Orange County” and taking up her suggestion of including a bowl of Fiber One in my daily diet frightens me a little. What happened to the defiant child that locked herself in her room when a Michael McDonald record came on in the house? Or the girl that used to make fun of her father when he fell asleep in the living room chair at 9:30PM? She’s been replaced by a woman who quietly sings the Time Life “Romancing the 70’s” commercial to herself as she slowly nods off Friday nights on her couch.

Though there is no denying that the generation transformation is taking place now, luckily I can still hold onto the fact that I don’t understand parents fascination with John Mayer, taking of countless Facebook quizzes, or tireless devotion to tucking in their shirts.

Top Ten Ways We Know We’re Turning into Our Parents:

1.) We’ve actually begun including tissue boxes on our grocery lists in substitute of using toilet paper for runny noses.

2.) One morning we wake to understanding the brilliant practicality of fanny packs. We even question why we made fun of them in the first place, telling our friends, “They’re actually kind of cool looking.”

3.) Internal conflicts regarding going out and getting drinks with friends or staying home and watching “Dancing With The Stars” becomes a weekly issue and one that often accumulates in the need for a Xanax.

4.) When Hall & Oates comes on in the department store, we no longer pout and quickly exit the store. Instead we get really excited and start crooning “Sara Smile” to the closest person who will listen.

5.) We resort back to 35mm and pillage our parents closets for their abandoned Minoltas.

When treading common area between college students and locals, we find our blood pressure rising when a large group of boisterous students are within ten feet of us. Everything they say sounds stupid and we’re 100% sure that we did not sound like them when in college.

7.) We begin holding a spot for “dry cleaning” on our budgets.

8.) We actually create budgets.

9.) Stopping by the mattress store while hungover just to lie on a Tempur-Pedic and chant to ourselves, “One day, baby. One day we will be together”, turns into spending our entire savings on the purchase of one.

10.) We may or may not purchase Consumer Reports and scan for the words “most” and “reliable” while searching for a new car.

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  • Reply soft nonsense March 23, 2010 at 2:38 pm

    #4 and #10 are unbelievably true….

  • Reply Tocalabocina March 23, 2010 at 2:52 pm

    I'm staying with my parents for a few months and have begun preparing their meals, packing their lunches, doing their dishes and nagging them about vegetable consumption while they eat top ramen and drink vodka tonics. Not just a case of turning into one's parents but an alter-fucking-universe going on up in here.

  • Reply Colleen March 23, 2010 at 2:54 pm

    #6 is so true! On Saturday my husband and I were walking down Amsterdam and we passed "Jake's Dilemma," which is a popular Columbia bar, and I sort of shuddered and said, "Oh my God, did we ever hang out at places like that?" and my husband said "Yes" and I asked "When?" and he said "Two years ago."

    I think one of the greatest age differences is between 24 and 26.

  • Reply inflammatory writ March 23, 2010 at 2:57 pm

    I'd like to add #11 – when hangovers start to last more than a day.

  • Reply Hipstercrite March 23, 2010 at 3:02 pm

    @Soft Nonsense- May I add when Chicago/Doobie Brothers comes on the radio….?

    @Tocalabocina- Now I would love to read a post about that! That sounds awesome!

    @Colleen- I wholeheartedly agree with you. I'm 26 now and was certainly very different at 24. In fact, I hated myself at 24. Now I think I'm the shit. 😉

    @Inflammatory Writ- Hahaha….that is most definitely #11.

  • Reply Angie March 23, 2010 at 3:03 pm

    Haha I can relate to so much of that. Kleenex… so true. And the anxiety that arises from passing a group of teenagers on the street is a sure sign of my aging.

  • Reply April March 23, 2010 at 3:19 pm

    I never thought I would find myself buying tissues, but lately I have been. Which occurred to me this past weekend when I was visiting my mom's house and noticed that she has tissue boxes EVERYWHERE! And I do too now! Ah! And #6 and #8 are so true it's disgusting.

  • Reply Jessie March 23, 2010 at 3:25 pm

    wow, this is so true. i'm there with ya! 🙂

  • Reply Lexa March 23, 2010 at 3:34 pm

    #1 & #8 are so true. This is really frightening.

  • Reply Tocalabocina March 23, 2010 at 3:42 pm

    As a matter of fact I wrote one such post a few months ago. While this was not a ploy to get anyone to read my blog, I'd be happy for you to find said post here:


  • Reply Benny Paul March 23, 2010 at 3:54 pm

    I love how one of the things you list that you still *don't* have in common with your parents is the "current" things they do, ie facebook quizzes and john mayer. I've definitely seen that. That will never make sense. It's like the equivalent of us using '60s prophylactics or, Idk, something else distinct to that era that's also totally worthless.

    #2 backpacks and messenger bags are both way too big most of the time…

    #4 holy shit soft rock sounds more awesome every year

    #6 omg when did college students get so little and annoying? they're babies!!!

    I.W.'s #11 i don't even have a joke prepared for that one- just "yes"

  • Reply Sarah March 23, 2010 at 5:20 pm

    oh man…i've started doing a lot of these things. the tissues, the budget, being annoyed by youngsters. and i'm turning into my mom…so scary!

  • Reply carissajaded March 23, 2010 at 6:04 pm

    Pretty much everything on this list rings true to me… Especially about singing Hall and Oates. I love that band.

  • Reply Holly Renee March 23, 2010 at 8:41 pm

    I love my mattress and I am scared of the herds of college students which sometimes cross my path. Also, I sometimes long for the "good old days." I think that's a total sign that I'm old balls.

  • Reply emily March 23, 2010 at 10:04 pm

    WOW, numbers 4 and 6 could not be more true, haha. I actually remember a snippet from my childhood where my mother was singing to me in the grocery store and I told her to stop humiliating me. Who's the public singer now? Oh right. It's me.

  • Reply Grant March 23, 2010 at 10:34 pm

    I went mattress shopping on Sunday while my cool friends were nursing sxsw hangovers. You think we are old now? 30 years from now you will feel ancient.

  • Reply IT March 23, 2010 at 11:17 pm

    I just had a scary thought. My parents are no longer with us and I will probably eventually go, too. Yep… for sure I'm turning into my parents. It's inevitable.

  • Reply Mel March 23, 2010 at 11:29 pm

    I don't know if I relate to the budget one. For the daughter of an irresponsible woman-child, creating a weekly budget is the pinacle of my rebellion.

    The mattress one though, so true. I'll know I'm properly a grown-up when I no longer just buy the cheapest mattress I can find that doesn't come with pee stains.

  • Reply Living Shallow, Living Well March 24, 2010 at 1:08 am

    Love it! I make fun of my mom for her Born shoes but I tried them on- they are comfortable!!!

  • Reply Erin March 24, 2010 at 1:57 am

    6,7 & 10 for sure. Budgets, reliable cars (and appliances – fridges, washers, etc) and dry cleaning. Also, I call my mom at least once a day for some advice – be it on a recipe, a parenting tip or whatnot. Seriously, our moms are geniuses.

  • Reply Ash March 24, 2010 at 3:19 pm

    I'm only 19, and this list is making ME feel old. I should be the annoying college student you hate…instead, i see my mother when i look in the mirror more everyday. Oh god…

  • Reply The Life Addict March 24, 2010 at 6:14 pm

    I think what I have noticed most about my coming of age is when I go clothes shopping. I find myself saying "people actually wear this?" and wishing that the super cute mini skirt I found was a couple inches longer. I now can understand my mother's issues with my clothing style in junior high and high school.

  • Reply EMQ March 24, 2010 at 6:17 pm

    Dude, wait until you become a parent. It's like suddenly, it all makes sense — 9:30 bedtime? Hell yeah! Safety first? Always, man. And I'm finding myself using the exact same words and exclamations and pet names as my mother, in the exact same tone of voice that she used. Talk about scary. Yet somehow very okay in a circle of life type way.

  • Reply T!nK March 25, 2010 at 3:22 am

    i am 1, 3, 5, 6, and 8!

  • Reply LambAround March 27, 2010 at 2:45 pm

    It's official. I'm old!

    Just a few more months and we'll have saved enough for our very own Temperpedic mattress! 🙂

  • Reply A.J. Bingham March 28, 2010 at 12:50 pm

    I would extend #6 to teenagers, as well. Dry cleaning most definitely.

  • Reply girlgoeseast March 30, 2010 at 9:19 pm

    oh my god. i hate my life. buying kleenex? don't rush me. i just actually started buying toilet paper. we used to steal ours from the college campus center.

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