25 Teenagers Share What They Believe Defines Their Generation Right Now


“Just here to see if my 21-year-old ass is still relevant.”—harshagarwal97


“Everyone’s mentally ill and everyone is an expert at diagnosing it in others.”—AbsentAcres


“Idk. Probably making sh*tty memes. I don’t think there’s been anything significant that we’ve done as a whole.”— scicklezz 


“One of the most savage insults I’ve seen recently on Reddit was someone said “zoomers can’t meme without templates.”—Turnbob73


“Cancel culture. It’s toxic in a way that it aims to ruin people’s lives over a single mistake that might have even occurred years back but had been resurfaced, while at the same time, overlooking other more recent and pressing issues. People my age are so afraid of being cancelled online that we end up becoming “fake woke.” We’re huge hypocrites for claiming to spread positivity in every way we can while also commenting hurtful things like “she’s not that pretty,” or “she doesn’t deserve the hype,” or even “she needs to be humbled” just because we aren’t fond of that person. We jump to the opportunity to see people have their whole careers ruined or a negative shadow cast over their name for the rest of their lives instead of using the platform to educate them.”—iGoByBea


“A complete lack of social cliques. I find this is something filmmakers are struggling to nail down. We don’t HAVE nerds and jocks anymore, it’s all kinda blended together. There isn’t specific seating arrangements in the cafeteria, and no lunch money stealing physical bullying. Everything’s more digital now so there really isn’t a high school “society.”—nxl_jayska 


“I’ve read at least a thousand of these replies and I think I’m finally able to share my piece. Many of the replies share the same theme: A lot of comments about “Relatability.” “Social media.” “Cell phones.” “Memes.” “Self-deprecating humor.” “Mental illness.”

I think what a lot of us are referencing but are too afraid to come out and say is insecurity. Generation Z is defined by a level of un-satisfaction within ourselves that we seek to quench via connection with others, whether that be through memes, TikToks, Snapchat, Twitter…our phones basically. As the “next generation” who are always told we’re the ones who are going to change the world, we haven’t grasped the reality of what that means or how and when we’re going to accomplish that as we advance from high school and college. It’s this story of a group of people, the “Chosen Ones” who know what they have to do but don’t know if they have the strength to do it.

As a collective, I think we recognize a multitude of injustices that befall upon us to solve, but we hesitate because we as individuals do not believe in ourselves. We must believe in ourselves if we can not believe in our selves, if that makes any sense. I personally believe the coronavirus situation is a major catalyst for change among Generation Z (especially the Class of 2020) and I’m quite excited to see where the next few years take us as we continue to develop our generational identity.”—NitronicFury


“Cliques: a**holes, weird kids, and everyone else.”—e_registeel 


“I’m 15 and everyone apart from me are road men (it’s an English thing ) and a side effect of this is being so sheltered that they lash out at everyone for the upbringing that they were never given. They wear full tracksuits and carry knives. Even though their lives are far from dangerous. The only thing they love more than telling people that there broke is coming from unbelievable wealth and telling people that there broke and they aren’t a rich privileged kid. It’s sick and unnatural and I’ll answer any questions about these abominations.”—samsonity


“There’s a definite ‘popular’ clique but they’re not popular in the sense that everyone wants to be them, they’re just labelled that because they fit in with the narrative of the self-obsessed, makeup addicted, superficial bitchy girls. They present themselves as so 1 sided and dumb when I know they’re not. I think they’re the only people in my school I would say I genuinely dislike. Basically we’re split into rich girls, the emo and queer group, another group of rich popular girls who are nicer and well-liked and a several sub-communities of ‘normals.'”—LIyre