November 18, 2020 | Eul Basa

People Share Annoying Things Their Parents Rant About From “Back In The Day”

Any generation can’t help but reminisce about some of the best things from their time. From long last candy to forgotten television shows, each generation comes with its fair share of great memories. However, parents and grandparents also like to drive the younger generation crazy by reminding their family how lazy and entitled they apparently are.


#1 Getting Fresh Air

I’m not going to lie. It really did always drive me nuts when my parents would complain about how we never spent any time outdoors. They’d complain because, back in their day, they'd be tramping through the woods at all hours of the night. Excuse me, parents. I wanted to do that, but I wasn't allowed outside.


#2 Work Ethic

My dad and uncles like to rant about how young people don’t have any honesty or work ethic. My oldest and youngest uncle made moonshine. My middle uncle stole cars. My dad built moonshine running cars out of the parts and my aunt ran off with a 50-year-old sugar daddy at 15. It took the car-stealing uncle going to jail to straighten them out.


#3 Doing it Right

All through my teenage years, my mom would get mad that I didn't know how to cook or clean something good enough or use something correctly, etc. "When I was your age, I could run my family's B&B single-handed!" Then, when she was done telling me how stupid I was for not knowing, she'd take over and tell me to go away. Thanks for teaching me how to do it right.


#4 Getting a Job

My mom always complained about me not being able to drive and not having a job. We lived out in the country, so no job was within walking distance, which meant I had to drive to have a job. It's like, well, if you won't sign me up for driving classes then would you mind actually teaching me how to drive? I can't very well do that myself. I ended up moving into town with my boyfriend and getting a job within walking distance. Still can't drive, though.


#5 Participation Trophy

"You kids get a trophy for everything now. You never learn how to try hard." Yes, when I was a child I got participation trophies. And they felt very patronizing. Also, I was seven years old. I didn't ask for the trophies to get handed to me. I’ll have you know that it was your generation who was giving them to me.


#6 Times Have Changed

Parenting has changed so much from the 26 years ago I was born. They think nothing has changed. My mom does this all the time. What do you mean I have to wash my hands before holding the baby? What do you mean I can't add rice cereal to the bottle at four months old? What do you mean I'm not allowed to spank your toddler? Every time I say no, I get a lecture about how it was so much different when they were raising me.


#7 College Job

I once got yelled at when I quit a job in college that paid eight dollars an hour. "I made three dollars an hour when I was your age. I would have done anything to make that." I quit after I realized the money I made in a month would barely pay for one of my textbooks, and I was taking 18 credits and didn't have enough time to actually read them.


#8 Growing Pain

When I was 11, I was hit by a car crossing the road. It messed up the muscles in one of my legs, but I didn't officially find out about it until a couple of years ago (I'm 23). So, in high school, I'd walk to school every day and every day my calf muscle would feel like it was about to snap. I would tell my parents all the time, and always got the, "In our day, we walked to school every day and it was way further blah blah blah." They thought I was trying to get rides to and from school to be lazy, lying about being in pain, or saying it was just growing pain and that it was normal.


#9 Too Lazy to Work

My dad was telling me about some prison job and he kept telling me to go by the prison and pick up an application. He didn't understand at all that first, I can't just walk up to a prison and second, it's a government job. So, you have to go through a government hiring portal, which is entirely online. I explained it to him multiple times and I don't think he believed me because he made some comment to my mom about how I was too lazy to even go apply for the job.


#10 Handling Rejection

My mother-in-law lost her job about eight years ago. She looked up some job listings, "picked" a job, sent in her resume, and fully expected them to call her up immediately to hire her. Of course, she never heard a thing from them. She was shocked and confused and promptly gave up looking for a job ever again because she couldn't handle the rejection.


#11 Bad Parents

My parents always complained that back in their day, the kids were always subjected to corporal punishments and were super submissive. They forgot that they already did that to me, they're just complaining that it didn't work that well. Not that they're actually submissive to my grandparents. Basically I have bad parents, and they're bad people.


#12 Proper Knowledge

A lot of older people I know don’t pass down proper knowledge. They’ll happily trash talk about your lack of knowledge. They won’t teach you how to do it properly. They’ll tell you to go away so they can do it themselves. They’ll also trash talk you more if you even try to hang around and learn by observation.


#13 Practice Your Cursive

My grandma hates computers and insisted that I continue practicing my cursive (which sucked) because I would have to write all of my high school college essays in cursive like she did. It was the same with my mom. The joke’s on them now. My handwriting is the child of print and cursive (unless I write really slow) and computers are a thing.


#14 Providing for the Family

The most annoying thing they rant about is us not providing our kids with the same life they had. My great grandparents owned several thousand acres at the turn of the century. They passed down land, heirloom furniture, a thriving farm, etc. The next generation split that all up. They sold a lot of it to start their own business. The next generation was the same. The last little plot of that is my mom's acre.

Each generation inherited less and less. I will inherit nothing. I got no land to start my family with, unlike them. No heirloom, no furniture, no money, nothing. My family looks down on me and my cousins for struggling, pretending they worked harder than we do, but they'll never know how hard our generation works for our kids.


#15 Native Tongue

The most annoying thing to me is how my parents complain that nobody (from my community) speaks our native language anymore. They say, “Back in my day, everyone spoke our language and today none of you kids can.” Guess what? The adults never taught it. It wasn't used in the homes. So how are we supposed to learn it?

And then I have people from the home country call me and speak and I’m like, “You know I barely understand?” I can speak better than my siblings, but not that much better. And they yell at me. Don’t blame me, blame my parents. And my parents and my friends' parents can all blame themselves and not their children.


#16 Maintaining Grades

"I was an honor roll student! It isn’t that hard!" That was coming from my mother who took arts in high school, never went to college, and argued with me about how it's not difficult to keep grades up. I'm a physics major, mom. It’s obvious to me that you don't really know anything about what I'm doing or studying.


#17 Following the Rules

Here’s how my childhood went: You can’t climb trees! Sports are too dangerous! Don’t look for bugs, they’re gross! Put that stick down! I don’t want you playing with that kid, he’s weird! It’s getting dark, time to come in! No you can’t play with the big kids, play with the little ones! I’m not buying you toys, use your imagination! Don’t play there, you’ll get dirty! Hey, why don’t you ever go out and play?


#18 Getting Away With It

My parents love talking about how they were beaten within an inch of their lives by their parents for stuff that I supposedly get away with. One of the most ridiculous ones was "holding my chopsticks wrong." Then, they talked about how their mother would chase them out of the house in the morning and they'd amuse themselves by being brats around the neighbourhood. They’d then only go home once everyone was asleep.


#19 Giving Attitude

“Back in my day, kids didn’t talk back to their parents or give them attitude. If they did, they got a good beating.” First of all, what you and your parents consider “talking back” is actually called having any sort of opinion different from yours. And yeah, maybe I do have an attitude, it should be expected. I’m young and stupid, but not so stupid that I cant have a thought of my own. And any attitude I do give you is mostly because my opinions aren’t taken seriously and you don’t listen to me.


#20 A Woman’s Place

My mom used to tell me that she believed a woman's place was in the home and kitchen, and that she wished women had never fought for the right to vote. She refused to do the majority of cleaning or cooking when I was growing up because she wanted to teach me and my brother how to take care of ourselves. When we moved out, her house looked bad for a while before she remarried and now my sisters are in the same boat as we were. She blows my mind.


#21 Thoughts on Sports

My dad is always complaining about "today's athletes." In any other job, you would go where the money is, why is it you have to be loyal in sports? Sure enough, when KD was sitting out in the finals, he thought, "You could never get me to sit during the finals, no matter what!" Then KD injured himself and he ranted about how you have to be smart about injuries or you just "hurt your team."


#22 Too Many Emotions

"Back in my day, people weren't that soft and full of emotions because we didn't have so much free time. We were working and if someone wasn't disciplined, they sent them to the military. That's exactly what your generation needs — to get deprogrammed because you guys have way too much time to think about your emotions."


#23 A Life for Myself

My grandmother basically raised me from age eight. She likes to say, "By your age, I was married, pregnant and working, what's wrong with you?" She misses the fact she was still living with her parents and her (now ex) husband was in prison. I think I'm doing pretty well for myself. I haven't got a job, but I'm not raising a kid that I don't want like most of the people my age in this day and age. I’m really trying to make a life for myself.


#24 Reliable Internet

“Back in my day, we didn’t have the internet.” Dad, I don't know if you’ve noticed, but we still don’t have the internet 90% of the time. It astounds me that in today’s day and age of technology, we can send emails to the space station and cruise ships in the middle of the ocean with wifi. Yet, rural internet is still not even close to reliable.


#25 Starting Out

My dad is more fond of the phrase, "When I was starting out,” which is basically the same thing, I think. I should tell him, "Dad, I haven't lived at home for more than 10 years now. I'm not looking to get married and have kids, ever. I'm not 'starting out' anymore. Neither is my younger, married, sister who owns her apartment and has two dogs and is also not looking to have kids."


#26 After School Activities

“Back in my day, I had to take care of my brothers, clean, cook, do the laundry, clean the backyard, study and I got good grades." Okay, mom. Sorry that I had a 90 in my grades, but I also had to handle the after school stuff that you forced me in (like the orchestra). I’m sorry I couldn’t keep up with what you put me through.


#27 All This Technology

My dad's thing is always, "When we were kids, we didn't have all this technology you guys have. We didn't need to do this all day" as he mimes holding a phone two inches from his face and aggressively tapping the invisible screen with one finger. Sure, dad. Because if you had the same technology available to you, everyone would have ignored it.


#28 High School Grades

I’m old so I probably annoy my own kids, but my mom thinks she’s super smart because she got good grades in high school. She went to high school in the ‘50s in a super trashy bumpkin river bottom town. She also never pursued an education past that. To be honest, she’s one of the dumbest people I know, even before she became elderly. She has no financial sense and thinks that she can’t drive on a road that she got a ticket on because she’ll get another ticket. You read that right, folks. Great, mom. You got an A in home economics in 1958. You’re a savant.


#29 There for Everyone

I don’t know about anyone else, but my father likes to ramble about how back in his day, he went to school and also managed to work to provide sustenance to his mom and siblings. I think it's possible to study and work, but you have to be extremely lucky to earn enough to provide for a family these days while also studying.


#30 Six-Hour Commute

My stepdad used to complain loudly and constantly that my husband wasn't willing to commute six hours daily just like he did when he was my husband's age. I snarkily pointed out that maybe spending six hours a day driving instead of spending it with his family might have contributed to the collapse of his first marriage. My stepdad's usually great, but he just doesn't get some stuff.


#31 Back in My Day

"Back in my day, we used to lay in the woods and built tree forts! Why don't you go and do that?" Um, no, mom. We live in a suburban neighborhood where there are two woods in sight for 20 miles. Additionally, there’s no one else my age who lives nearby and we don't have any outside toys. What do you think I should do?


#32 Med Students

When I got into my 20’s, my parents pestered me day and night about getting married. They constantly told me to not get older alone because they “deserved” a grandson. I was a jobless med student, how on earth did they think I could start a family without solid financial planning? Let alone raise a child too.


#33 Going Steady

Dating is a big thing. In high school, if I went on one date with a guy, we were already considered boyfriend and girlfriend. “Back in my day, I went on several dates with guys a week! And we weren’t considered going steady!” Yeah, well, I would have been considered a promiscuous girl if I did that in high school, mom.


#34 The Enemy at Home

My dad is 55 and I’m 17. He always rants about how “technology is going to kill us all” whenever something so minor like his computer restarting for an update happens. Sometimes it’s if Google takes more than five seconds to load and then he rants about a solar flare and power grids going out. He’ll complain about how all the banks are electronic, everyone will lose their money and how you should keep money in your safe at home.


#35 We Had Nothing

My parents constantly tell me how they had to walk through a forest to get to school and how the only entertainment they had was stuff they found in the garbage. My dad specifically always mentions he only got one pair of shoes every year whenever we shop. Not to mention the constant "you're addicted to your phone." They’re largely the reason I started going online more often to get away from them.


#36 First House

I'm 25 and finally in a position to be able to put down a deposit for a house in the UK. But my stepdad just keeps harping on about how back in his day, he only had to put down $800 on his first house. He can't seem to grasp that I have literally had to save nearly 12K just to put down a deposit on an apartment!

He’ll say something like, “Well with that money, you can just buy a house!" I always have to tell him that I would need at least triple of that to get a decent-sized house. Besides, I want to buy an apartment as it's just me. “Well, you can buy a house with that!" No. No, I absolutely can't. Lord give me strength.


#37 The Old Days

When my dad said that me and my brother should be happy that we have technology when he had none and that we're so spoiled. Apparently, we’re spoiled because we have technology when most of the people we know have phones while he didn't have one. He's still stuck back in the old ways and it's really annoying.


#38 Bits of Trivia

My parents pride themselves on their ability to remember trivia and little bits of information. As someone who grew up with the internet, I’ve always had the ability to just reach into my pocket and look up any fact I needed to know. It’s been an uphill struggle trying to convince my folks I’m not lazy because of this difference.


#39 Reminiscing Generations

I was sitting outside of a classroom about three months ago waiting for the teacher to unlock the door. I heard a conversation between a middle-aged woman and the teacher. The woman asked the teacher if she noticed a difference between younger kids and older kids and how they acted. The teacher stated she didn't really notice any real difference.

The woman started to reminisce about how, "Back in my day, if a kid disrespected a bus driver then their mother would smack them. Then the bus driver would beat them. Then everyone on the bus would beat the kid." I was sitting outside the room and was just appalled by this woman's delusion of a better time. Apparently, this woman misses rampant misbehavior.


#40 A Harder Life

My mother would always talk down to me. She’d tell me all the time about how her life was harder and I have it so much easier than her. She was right, but it got so annoying. I know you shared a bed with your three sisters and cooked and cleaned every night. It doesn't mean I should do it for your patronizing butt.


#41 Let Me Be Happy

I recently started my first real “job.” I was beyond happy to receive my first month of pay. My mother said I was so lucky because back then, she would earn much less on her first job. It might be true, but how is it even comparable when so much has happened in between? Like inflation and stuff. Just let me be happy, mom.


#42 History Repeats Itself

“Back in my day, I had to go without glasses because my parents didn’t believe I needed them. I got them when I was 17 with my own money and they were mad because they said I was wasting good cash. I still got straight As without being able to read the board!” All of this was said by my mother, who was convinced that I was lying when I said I needed glasses at the beginning of high school. I bought my own glasses at 19 and still had straight As through high school, too. Oh, how funny it is when history repeats itself!


#43 Stuck in the Past

My parents always complained that I played too many video games while they spent roughly eight hours a day watching brainwashing stuff on TV. I turned out just fine. I’ve got a family, a great job, and earned good money. I'm also educated and have a master’s degree in IT. My parents, on the other hand, are still living the exact same life they lived 30 years ago, still complaining about everything, no improvements whatsoever and still in debt with their business they ran for years.


#44 Hard Knock Life

My mom once went on a rant about how baby boomers as a generation have dealt with a lot of massive changes. She also said it's “hard on them” and cited currency change, technology improvement and the LGBTQIA+ movement as hardships. She was basically using this as an excuse to say ignorant and offensive things. I was dumbfounded.


#45 Having Lunch

Me and my co-workers take lunch together and we're all aged about 20-40. Naturally, we go on our phones a lot while we eat and just waste time. There are these three old guys who I work with that will occasionally walk by and laugh at us looking at our phones and not reading the newspaper or just talking. First, I've got every newspaper in the world on my phone, so cram it. Second, I spend nine hours a day with these guys, sometimes I just want to tune them out.


#46 Farm Life

Evidently, my father woke up at 5:00 a.m. to work on the farm, then went to school, then came back and worked on the farm until dusk. He then did all of his homework until he finished and repeated the process. Gee, dad. Sorry, I guess it’s a real shame we live in a suburb with no farm for you to make me work on.


#47 A Little Reminder

My dad would often do that about studying. He’d talk about having to go to the library and read books instead of having the internet. I then quickly reminded him that he got his university education for free and rent was one-third of what the government gave him as a full-time student. Whereas rent was twice what the government was giving me when I was studying.


#48 Boomer Stereotype

I'm 21 and my dad is 70. I can't even begin to list the stuff he comes out with. But he's absolutely the Boomer stereotype. He hates technology, does my head in by forcing me to do all the tech stuff for him and doesn't even ask (apparently you don't need manners when you're elderly). He also doesn't believe depression exists, tells me I'm wrong about my own sexuality, etc.


#49 On the Road Again

My dad told me about how when he was young, he used to go outside, ride his bike around, and not come back until dinner. I would've gone outside more but you didn't even let me walk to my own school down the road. Yet where he was, no one was even around on the road, and I know because I lived in that same area for about a year.


#50 Dinner Conversation

My stepdad likes to make comments about how “back in my day” nobody was trans and how weird and gross it is now to see trans people. Of course, he doesn’t use the word “trans.” He’ll say something like, “A guy who dresses like a chick.” He thinks the best time to make statements like these is when we have other family members over for dinner.



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