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9 things to know about kids in foster care. Plus an unforgettable view into their lives.

Foster care is a nightmare for some kids and their foster parents. For others, it's a blessing.

foster care, foster care facts, zoe removed

A clip from "ReMoved Part Two"



Zoe's story, "Removed," has been seen by millions of people.

It was previously shared by my amazing Upworthy colleague Laura Willard. We got just a tiny taste of what it was like for kids in foster care, right after being removed. Specifically, a little girl named Zoe and her little brother Benaiah.

My wife and I, foster parents for the past year, even shared the original with our adoption worker, who passed it along to the entire agency and, then, it took off like wildfire among those people as well.

This is part 2 of that story, and it hits hard.

(Yes, the video's on the long side at about 20 minutes. But it's worth the watch to the end.)

She describes her life as a cycle, interrupted by a tornado. She's a foster child. I don't think I need to say any more.


So ... let's accompany that with 9 uncomfortable — but enlightening — facts below. There are only nine bolded, but within those headers, there are several more facts.

1. There are an estimated 400,000 kids in foster care right now.

Some are awaiting adoption. Some will go back to their parents. Others will age out or, sometimes, run away.

2. Foster kids can suffer from PTSD at almost two times the rate of returning veterans.

And PTSD can mimic a lot of other mental illnesses, and it can manifest as nightmares, flashbacks, fight-or-flee responses, anger outbursts, and hyper-vigilance (being on "red alert" at all times), among other symptoms.

Image via Nathaniel Matanick.


3. The average age of a foster child is 9 years old.

They're just on that edge of childhood, and chances are, it's been a pretty messed up childhood at that. Trauma does that.

4. About half of all foster kids are in non-relative foster homes.

8% are in institutions, 6% are in group homes, and only 4% are in pre-adoptive homes. Read that again — only 4% are in pre-adoptive homes.

5. Some of foster children experience multiple placements. In some cases, eight or more.

That's eight homes that they move into — and out of. And just consider ... that means they lose not just adults and other kids with whom they are establishing a bond, but friends, schoolmates, pets.

Clip via Nathaniel Matanick


6. The average foster child remains in the system for almost two years before being reunited with their biological parents, adopted, aging out, or other outcomes.

8% of them remain in foster care for over five years. Of the 238,000 foster kids who left the system in 2013, about half were reunited with parents or primary caregivers, 21% were adopted, 15% went to live with a relative or other guardian, and 10% were emancipated (aged out).

7. In 2013, more than 23,000 young people aged out of foster care with no permanent family to end up with.

And if you add that up, year after year, hundreds of thousands of foster youth will have aged out of the system. What does that look like? "You're 18. You've got no place to live and no family. Good luck — buh-bye now!" One-quarter of former foster kids experience homelessness within four years of exiting the system.

8. Foster "alumni" (those who have been in foster homes and either adopted, returned to parents, or aged out) are likely to suffer serious mental health consequences.

They are four-five times more likely to be hospitalized for attempting suicide and five-eight times more likely to be hospitalized for serious psychiatric disorders in their teens.

Based on that set of statistics alone, it's in the public's interest (ignoring, for a second, the interests of those kids) to help them through their lot in life and spend resources making it all work much better for everybody before it gets to that point. Right?

So there's a lot to be angry about in this whole messed up situation. But this next thing? My blood boils.

What's one of the biggest risk factors in families whose children are placed in foster care?

Your guess?

Cruelty?

Drugs?

Sexual abuse?

Neglect?

The answer is ...

9. Poverty

Together with homelessness and unemployment, it's a main contributing factor. It happens all the time. The fact that it's far easier for a parent to be accused and investigated for neglect or abuse because of simple things like lack of access to a vehicle, or a working refrigerator, or the ability to get a kid to a doctor's appointment — that has a lot to do with this. Tie that to the link between drug abuse and poverty and between poverty and child abuse ... well, you can see where this is going.

And in a country where one-third of children are living in poverty (hint: the good ol' U.S. of A.), imagine how that affects the number of kids being removed and placed into foster care.

I'll end this with a bit of hope through my story.

My kids went through something a lot like the kids in the clip above before they came to live with us. We've been through the ringer in ways that we're going to have to talk about one day because it's not just that the kids have been challenging — they have — it's that the system itself has been more challenging.

The entire system — from agencies to government entities to social workers to even the schools — seems like it's designed to fail these kids and the families who are attempting to help. It's almost designed not to work. There, I said it.

But that doesn't mean we won't fight to make it better for everybody. We most definitely will.

Image from a photo by my wife, Robin.

As for us, we're just a few weeks away from becoming the legal parents to these kids, and we're extremely happy to be right here, making it happen. And they seem quite happy to be our kids. Along the way, we fell in love with them, and we can't imagine life without them.

But to be totally honest ... if we'd have known how hard it was going to be when we started this journey, and if we could somehow turn back the clock and NOT do it ... well, would we have actually gone forward with the process?

I take that back. I won't be totally honest here. I will simply let you decide.

Here are some places to help, if you're so inclined.

        • AdoptUsKids.org is a place to start if you're considering fostering or adopting.
        • My Stuff Bags is a really cool and inexpensive way to help foster kids by gifting them actual luggage, duffel bags, and more, so that they don't travel from home to home with garbage bags for their belongings — or nothing at all.
        • CASA for Children offers legal help and advocates for foster kids through a network of volunteers.

        This story was written by Brandon Weber and originally appeared on 07.17.15

        Sponsored

        3 organic recipes that feed a family of 4 for under $7 a serving

        O Organics is the rare brand that provides high-quality food at affordable prices.

        A woman cooking up a nice pot of pasta.

        Over the past few years, rising supermarket prices have forced many families to make compromises on ingredient quality when shopping for meals. A recent study published by Supermarket News found that 41% of families with children were more likely to switch to lower-quality groceries to deal with inflation.

        By comparison, 29% of people without children have switched to lower-quality groceries to cope with rising prices.

        Despite the current rising costs of groceries, O Organics has enabled families to consistently enjoy high-quality, organic meals at affordable prices for nearly two decades. With a focus on great taste and health, O Organics offers an extensive range of options for budget-conscious consumers.

        O Organics launched in 2005 with 150 USDA Certified Organic products but now offers over 1,500 items, from organic fresh fruits and vegetables to organic dairy and meats, organic cage-free certified eggs, organic snacks, organic baby food and more. This gives families the ability to make a broader range of recipes featuring organic ingredients than ever before.


        “We believe every customer should have access to affordable, organic options that support healthy lifestyles and diverse shopping preferences,” shared Jennifer Saenz, EVP and Chief Merchandising Officer at Albertsons, one of many stores where you can find O Organics products. “Over the years, we have made organic foods more accessible by expanding O Organics to every aisle across our stores, making it possible for health and budget-conscious families to incorporate organic food into every meal.”

        With some help from our friends at O Organics, Upworthy looked at the vast array of products available at our local store and created some tasty, affordable and healthy meals.

        Here are 3 meals for a family of 4 that cost $7 and under, per serving. (Note: prices may vary by location and are calculated before sales tax.)

        O Organic’s Tacos and Refried Beans ($6.41 Per Serving)

        Few dishes can make a family rush to the dinner table quite like tacos. Here’s a healthy and affordable way to spice up your family’s Taco Tuesdays.

        Prep time: 2 minutes

        Cook time: 20 minutes

        Total time: 22 minutes

        Ingredients:

        1 lb of O Organics Grass Fed Ground Beef ($7.99)

        1 packet O Organics Taco Seasoning ($2.29)

        O Organics Mexican-Style Cheese Blend Cheese ($4.79)

        O Organics Chunky Salsa ($3.99)

        O Organics Taco Shells ($4.29)

        1 can of O Organics Refried Beans ($2.29)

        Instructions:

        1. Cook the ground beef in a skillet over medium heat until thoroughly browned; remove any excess grease.

        2. Add 1 packet of taco seasoning to beef along with water [and cook as directed].

        3. Add taco meat to the shell, top with cheese and salsa as desired.

        4. Heat refried beans in a saucepan until cooked through, serve alongside tacos, top with cheese.

        tacos, o organics, family recipesO Organics Mexican-style blend cheese.via O Organics

        O Organics Hamburger Stew ($4.53 Per Serving)

        Busy parents will love this recipe that allows them to prep in the morning and then serve a delicious, slow-cooked stew after work.

        Prep time: 15 minutes

        Cook time: 7 hours

        Total time: 7 hours 15 minutes

        Servings: 4

        Ingredients:

        1 lb of O Organics Grass Fed Ground Beef ($7.99)

        1 ½ lbs O Organics Gold Potatoes ($4.49)

        3 O Organics Carrots ($2.89)

        1 tsp onion powder

        I can O Organics Tomato Paste ($1.25)

        2 cups water

        1 yellow onion diced ($1.00)

        1 clove garlic ($.50)

        1 tsp salt

        1/4 tsp pepper

        2 tsp Italian seasoning or oregano

        Instructions:

        1. Cook the ground beef in a skillet over medium heat until thoroughly browned; remove any excess grease.

        2. Transfer the cooked beef to a slow cooker with the potatoes, onions, carrots and garlic.

        3. Mix the tomato paste, water, salt, pepper, onion powder and Italian seasoning in a separate bowl.

        4. Drizzle the mixed sauce over the ingredients in the slow cooker and mix thoroughly.

        5. Cover the slow cooker with its lid and set it on low for 7 to 8 hours, or until the potatoes are soft. Dish out into bowls and enjoy!

        potatoes, o organics, hamburger stewO Organics baby gold potatoes.via O Organics


        O Organics Ground Beef and Pasta Skillet ($4.32 Per Serving)

        This one-pan dish is for all Italian lovers who are looking for a saucy, cheesy, and full-flavored comfort dish that takes less than 30 minutes to prepare.

        Prep time: 2 minutes

        Cook time: 25 minutes

        Total time: 27 minutes

        Servings: 4

        Ingredients:

        1 lb of O Organics Grass Fed Ground Beef ($7.99)

        1 tbsp. olive oil

        2 tsp dried basil

        1 tsp garlic powder

        1 can O Organics Diced Tomatoes ($2.00)

        1 can O Organics Tomato Sauce ($2.29)

        1 tbsp O Organics Tomato Paste ($1.25)

        2 1/4 cups water

        2 cups O Organics Rotini Pasta ($3.29)

        1 cup O Organics Mozzarella cheese ($4.79)

        Instructions:

        1. Brown ground beef in a skillet, breaking it up as it cooks.

        2. Sprinkle with salt, pepper and garlic powder

        3. Add tomato paste, sauce and diced tomatoes to the skillet. Stir in water and bring to a light boil.

        4. Add pasta to the skillet, ensuring it is well coated. Cover and cook for about 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.

        5. Remove the lid, sprinkle with cheese and allow it to cool.

        o organics, tomato basil pasta sauce, olive oilO Organics tomato basil pasta sauce and extra virgin olive oil.via O Organics

        Health

        Psychologist explains why everyone feels exhausted right now and it makes so much sense

        Psychologist Naomi Holdt beautifully explained what's behind the overarching exhaustion people are feeling and it makes perfect sense.

        Photo by Jamie Street on Unsplash

        It seems like most people are feeling wiped out these days. There's a reason for that.

        We're about to wrap up year three of the COVID-19 pandemic, and it's been a weird ride, to say the least. These years have been hard, frustrating, confusing and tragic, and yet we keep on keeping on.

        Except the keeping on part isn't quite as simple as it sounds. Despite the fact that COVID-19 is still wreaking havoc, we've sort of collectively decided to move on, come what may. This year has been an experiment in normalcy, but one without a testable hypothesis or clear design. And it's taken a toll. So many people are feeling tired, exhausted, worn thin ("like butter scraped over too much bread," as Bilbo Baggins put it) these days.

        But why?



        Psychologist and speaker Naomi Holdt beautifully explained what's behind the overarching exhaustion people are feeling as we close out 2022, and it makes perfect sense.

        In a post on Facebook, she wrote:

        "A gentle reminder about why you are utterly exhausted…

        No one I know began this year on a full tank. Given the vicious onslaught of the previous two years (let’s just call it what it was) most of us dragged ourselves across the finish line of 2021… frazzled, spent, running on aged adrenaline fumes…

        We crawled into 2022 still carrying shock, trauma, grief, heaviness, disbelief… The memories of a surreal existence…

        And then it began… The fastest hurricane year we could ever have imagined. Whether we have consciously processed it or not, this has been a year of more pressure, more stress, and a race to 'catch up' in all departments… Every. Single. One. Work, school, sports, relationships, life…

        Though not intentionally aware, perhaps hopeful that the busier we are, the more readily we will forget… the more easily we will undo the emotional tangle… the more permanently we will wipe away the scarring wounds…

        We can’t.

        And attempts to re-create some semblance of 'normal' on steroids while disregarding that for almost two years our sympathetic nervous systems were on full alert, has left our collective mental health in tatters. Our children and teens are not exempt. The natural byproduct of fighting a hurricane is complete and utter exhaustion…

        So before you begin questioning the absolutely depleted and wrung-dry state you are in- Pause. Breathe. Remind yourself of who you are and what you have endured. And then remind yourself of what you have overcome.

        Despite it all, you’re still going. (Even on the days you stumble and find yourself face down in a pile of dirt).

        Understanding brings compassion… Most of the world’s citizens are in need of a little extra TLC at the moment. Most are donning invisible 'Handle with care' posters around their necks and 'Fragile' tattoos on their bodies…

        Instead of racing to the finish line of this year, tread gently.

        Go slowly. Amidst the chaos, find small pockets of silence. Find compassion. Allow the healing. And most of all… Be kind. There’s no human being on earth who couldn’t use just a little bit more of the healing salve of kindness."

        Putting it like that, of course we're exhausted. We're like a person who thinks they're feeling better at the end of an illness so they dive fully back into life, only to crash mid-day because their body didn't actually have as much energy as their brain thought it did. We tried to fling ourselves into life, desperate to feel normal and make up for lost time, without taking the time to fully acknowledge the impact of the past two years or to fully recover and heal from it.

        Of course, life can't just stop, but we do need to allow some time for our bodies, minds and spirits to heal from what they've been through. The uncertainty, the precariousness of "normal," the after-effects of everything that upended life as we knew it are real. The grief and trauma of those who have experienced the worst of the pandemic are real. The overwhelm of our brains and hearts as we try to process it all is real.

        So let's be gentle with one another and ourselves as we roll our harried selves into another new year. We could all use that little extra measure of grace as we strive to figure out what a true and healthy "normal" feels like.

        You can follow Naomi Holdt on Facebook.


        This article originally appeared on 12.23.22

        Images provided by P&G

        Three winners will be selected to receive $1000 donated to the charity of their choice.

        True

        Doing good is its own reward, but sometimes recognizing these acts of kindness helps bring even more good into the world. That’s why we’re excited to partner with P&G again on the #ActsOfGood Awards.

        The #ActsOfGood Awards recognize individuals who actively support their communities. It could be a rockstar volunteer, an amazing community leader, or someone who shows up for others in special ways.

        Do you know someone in your community doing #ActsOfGood? Nominate them between April 24th-June 3rdhere.Three winners will receive $1,000 dedicated to the charity of their choice, plus their story will be highlighted on Upworthy’s social channels. And yes, it’s totally fine to nominate yourself!

        We want to see the good work you’re doing and most of all, we want to help you make a difference.

        While every good deed is meaningful, winners will be selected based on how well they reflect Upworthy and P&G’s commitment to do #ActsOfGood to help communities grow.

        That means be on the lookout for individuals who:

        Strengthen their community

        Make a tangible and unique impact

        Go above and beyond day-to-day work

        The #ActsOfGood Awards are just one part of P&G’s larger mission to help communities around the world to grow. For generations, P&G has been a force for growth—making everyday products that people love and trust—while also being a force for good by giving back to the communities where we live, work, and serve consumers. This includes serving over 90,000 people affected by emergencies and disasters through the Tide Loads of Hope mobile laundry program and helping some of the millions of girls who miss school due to a lack of access to period products through the Always #EndPeriodPoverty initiative.

        Visit upworthy.com/actsofgood and fill out the nomination form for a chance for you or someone you know to win. It takes less than ten minutes to help someone make an even bigger impact.

        Health

        Psychologists set the record straight on what gaslighting is (and what it's not)

        "People often tell me that someone gaslighted them when in fact, what they are describing is mere disagreement."

        Arguments and disagreements do not automatically equal gaslighting.

        Unless we were in therapy to deal with an emotionally abusive relationship, most of us weren't familiar with the term "gaslighting" until the past decade. Now, it's everywhere, and there always seems to be someone talking to people and gaslighting them. In fact, it's used so much that in 2022, it was named a word of the year by the dictionary giant Merriam-Webster.

        "Gaslighting" has become a common part of our vocabulary—unfortunately, it also comes with some common misunderstandings.

        Merriam-Webster currently defines gaslighting as “the act or practice of grossly misleading someone, especially for one’s own advantage,” but that definition merely reflects how the clinical term has been broadened and oversimplified. As psychologists explain, specific factors make a behavior gaslighting instead of disagreeing, correcting, or trying to persuade someone that they're right.



        Where the term "gaslighting" comes from

        The word "gaslighting" is derived from a 1938 play called "Gas Light," which was subsequently adapted as the film "Gaslight" in 1944. In that story, a young woman's new husband—who had, unbeknownst to her, murdered her aunt 10 years prior—tries to make her think she's losing her mind. He manipulates her environment (for instance, by repeatedly dimming the gas lights) but denies that anything odd is happening, making her question her reality. His deception was deliberate—he hoped to drive her mad so he could institutionalize her and steal a cache of jewels that were hidden in her aunt's house.

        That storyline, the husband's tactics and the reason for them provide helpful context for what gaslighting is and isn't.

        What is "gaslighting"?

        Psychology Today defines gaslighting as "an insidious form of manipulation and psychological control. Victims of gaslighting are deliberately and systematically fed false information that leads them to question what they know to be true, often about themselves. They may end up doubting their memory, their perception, and even their sanity. Over time, a gaslighter’s manipulations can grow more complex and potent, making it increasingly difficult for the victim to see the truth."

        Robin Stern, Ph.D., wrote the 2007 book "The Gaslight Effect," which helped popularize the term that she says is now losing its meaning. "People often tell me that someone gaslighted them when, in fact, what they are describing is mere disagreement," she writes in Psychology Today.

        Here's how she describes it:

        "Gaslighting is a form of emotional abuse where one person’s psychological manipulation causes another person to question their reality. Gaslighting can happen between two people in any relationship. A gaslighter preserves his or her sense of self and power over the gaslightee, who adopts the gaslighter’s version of reality over their own."

        Ahona Guha D.Psych offers a definition that includes some key factors:

        "Gaslighting is a pattern of behaviour, usually intentional, designed to make someone question their own reality, memories, or experiences. The lesson is simple: When identifying gaslighting, look for a pattern (i.e., one time is not enough), and for behaviour that seems intentional or malicious (think 'No, you are over-reacting because you are too sensitive, it didn’t happen that way')."

        When is it not really gaslighting?

        If we define gaslighting as simply misleading or confusing someone, it becomes easy to mislabel all kinds of normal, imperfect human interactions as such. Disagreements, remembering events differently, and even trying to convince someone of your viewpoint are not gaslighting unless they involve some specific elements.

        "It’s important to remember that gaslighting is not present every time there is a conflict, and someone feels strongly about their point of view and rejects another’s," explains Stern. "Conflicts can veer into gaslighting if one person is so insistent that the other person starts to doubt themselves. A power imbalance in the relationship usually allows the gaslighter to undermine the gaslightee’s sense of self. The need to control, the act of manipulating, and the leveraging of power are essential components of gaslighting—not hurt feelings or challenged viewpoints."

        "Often, the gaslighter is unyielding and verbally aggressive," Stern adds. "The gaslighter likely turns a back-and-forth discussion into blaming the other person and may even lie outright about what took place. They may use statements such as, 'Are you crazy? I never said that—must be early memory loss,' and 'OMG—fantasy land as usual. Can’t you remember anything?!'"

        Guha emphasizes that gaslighting is not a one-off behavior but a pattern. "Most people will say things that might be insensitive, exasperated, or callous on occasion. It would not count as gaslighting unless there was a repeated pattern over time — a pattern based on a desire to deny recognition of the other’s experience."

        Why does it matter if we call something gaslighting when it's not?

        “Gaslighting is often used in an accusatory way when somebody may just be insistent on something, or somebody may be trying to influence you," Dr. Stern told Well + Good. "That’s not what gaslighting is.” She shared that accusing someone of gaslighting when they are really just insistent on a strongly held opinion, or belief shuts down a conversation in an unhealthy way.

        Stern and her colleague Marc Barnett at the Yale Center for Emotional Intelligence wrote in the Washington Post, "Today, many people use 'gaslighting' when someone merely disagrees with them. Well-meaning partners, co-workers, or family members may not be skilled in resolving conflict in a relationship, but that doesn’t mean they’re gaslighting — or being gaslighted. Mislabeling and name-calling can break down communication. It can also lead you to think you’re in an emotionally abusive relationship when you’re not."

        Gaslighting is "an extreme form of emotional abuse," according to the National Domestic Violence Hotline, so if you wonder if you may be the victim of a gaslighter, get advice from a professional therapist who has the knowledge and experience to help.

        via Kelsey Dawn Williamson / Facebook

        An unexpected statement on a Frog and Toad T-shirt.



        Kelsey Dawn Williamson, 23, from Benton, Illinois has ordered over 50 shirts from AliExpress, an online retailer based out of Hangzhou, China. But when the Frog and Toad shirt she ordered on May 10 arrived, she "literally did not know how to react so I just took a few moments to stare at it and try to process."

        The infant-sized shirt has a picture of the iconic reptiles from the children's book series riding old-fashioned bikes with "FUCK THE POLICE" written at the bottom.


        Williamson posted a photo of her daughter Salem in the shirt on Facebook and it quickly went viral.

        The shirt that was delivered looked exactly like the one in the online store, just without the caustic N.W.A. lyric.

        China, comedy, NWA

        Frog and Toad T-shirt that was advertised.

        aliexpress.com

        While it seems utterly bizarre that someone would create a shirt with "FUCK THE POLICE" written beneath a picture of Frog and Toad — a duo who've never been known to harbor ill will against law enforcement — there's a good reason.

        Memes featuring Frog and Toad are so popular they have their own subreddit. The shirtmaker, who probably doesn't have a license to use Frog and Toad, must have got the photo from a Google search. The person who made the shirt was most likely Chinese and either didn't speak English or has a very poor eye for detail.

        After Williamson received the shirt, she Facetimed her husband and they screamed together. "We both just lost it, dying of laughter," she told Buzzfeed. "All he could say was 'Oh shit.'"

        "I've told [Salem], 'People really like your frog shirt!'" Williamson said. But she's not letting her child wear the offensive shirt to preschool. "It's going in her baby box so we can bring it up when she's older."

        Unfortunately, the incident has been all laughs for Williamson. She's received messages from people who've fat-shamed her daughter.

        trolling, body shaming, negative feedback

        The online trolling.

        via Kelsey Dawn Williamson / Facebook

        Frog and Toad memes, memes, fuck the police

        Nothing nice to say.

        via Kelsey Dawn Williamson / Facebook

        e-commerce, Facebook, children\u2019s books

        A positive message.

        via Kelsey Dawn Williamson / Facebook

        "People were actually messaging me just to say mean things about her," she said. "A ton of people calling her fat, asking me what I feed her to make her so big, telling me the shirt I bought was too small."

        But Williamson has remained strong and fought back against the shamers. She edited her post to address her daughter's weight but refuses to take it down. "SHE SEES SPECIALISTS FOR HER WEIGHT. SHE CANT HELP IT. I CANT HELP IT. MY HUSBAND CANT HELP IT. IT IS OUT OF OUR CONTROL. JUST LAUGH AT THE FUNNY SHIRT," Williamson wrote on Facebook.

        That's right people, just laugh at the funny shirt, and stay out of people's business.

        children\u2019s literature, encouragement, education, social behavior

        Frog says, “Come at me, bro!"

        This article originally appeared on 06.01.19

        Boomers weren't wrong about everything.

        Baby boomers (people born between 1946 and 1964) have been taking a lot of heat over the past few years from younger generations who think that their me-first mentality helped create a world where the climate is getting warmer, the rich are getting richer, the poor are getting poorer and people born in the ‘40s and ‘50s still rule the modern workplace.

        Boomers are also super frustrating because many can’t figure out modern technology, and the younger folks have to explain it until they are blue in the face.

        Of course, these are all generational stereotypes that many baby boomers would reject. But they will probably stand up and cheer when they read a list of tweets inspired by X user @FvreignLL, who asked, “What is the most boomer complaint you have?” The post was embraced by younger people and received over 123 million views.



        Even though boomers are in the hot seat these days, just about everyone can agree that they’re right about many things that get under younger people’s skin, too. One of the recurring themes of the post was that people can’t stand the fact that we are overly dependent on technology, and often, instead of making things more accessible, it makes them more frustrating.

        Here are 15 of the best ‘boomer complaints’ that younger people have, too.

        People had a lot of thoughts on the state of customer service in 2024.



        They also can’t stand the idea that technology has complicated things unnecessarily.



        Technology has also made people super annoying. What's the point in paying $13 for a movie and scrolling through your phone in the theater the whole time?



        We’ve also created a world that isn’t exactly kid-friendly.



        And, what happened to adults?



        Whatever happened to paying for something once and then owning it? Or being able to own physical media so that you don’t have to pay every time you watch your favorite movie?



        Also, when did we all decide that almost every chip has to be kettle-cooked and made for people with cobalt teeth? Enjoying a snack shouldn't result in a $5,000 dental bill.



        Remember when coffee was a quarter? Boomers do. These days, it's common to spend $6 or $7 on a cup of Joe.



        Most importantly, young people also have a real problem with you standing on their finely manicured lawn.



        This rundown shouldn't just lead one to believe that boomers are the cranky generation. When their time comes, Gen Xers, millennials and Gen Z will be right behind them, complaining about "kids these days" and why things were so much better "in my day." But hopefully, they'll be a bit better at using technology.

        What's accepted now but will be embarrassing in the future?

        We can all be sure that as society evolves, many things that seem normal today will be cringeworthy to people in the future, whether it’s our fashion, politics, civility, or how we treat the environment.

        If we look back just 30 years ago, same-sex marriage was illegal, people routinely smoked in bars and restaurants and it was fashionable to wear platform sneakers.

        So, when we look back on the world of 2024, there are bound to be many things that we’ll be embarrassed about in 30 years, especially when we are forced to live with the repercussions of the decisions we make today. On a lighter note, we’ll all also have clouds full of photos of ourselves wearing hairstyles and clothes that look utterly ridiculous in hindsight.


        We asked the Upworthy community to share their thoughts by asking a big question on Facebook: "What's something that's accepted now that we'll be embarrassed about in the future?" Our readers responded with funny takes on current fashion and concerns about technology use and how we treat our fellow human beings.

        Here are 21 things we accept today that we’ll probably be embarrassed about in the future.

        More than a few current fashion trends will look silly in the coming years.


        "Yoga pants. I love them to death, but I can easily see them as the parachute pants of tomorrow." — Deborah

        "Barn doors in your house." — Joyce

        "Tattoos all over the body." — Vicki

        "People wearing socks and sandals." — Jeremy

        "Wearing pajamas in public." — Ivy

        "Huge, over-sized false eyelashes." — Patricia

        Hopefully, people in the future will be more considerate when using technology than we are today.



        "Walking around with your eyes locked on your phone. Or eating at a table with 4 people looking at their phone. One day, we will either fall off a cliff or realize life is what is happening off the screen." — Elise.

        "Texting in the presence of another person." — Kate

        We can also hope that in the near future, we will be able to solve many of today’s pressing public policy issues so that the next generation will live happier and healthier lives.



        "Lack of healthcare for everyone." — Sharon

        "Making the planet unlivable for human beings." — Karen

        "Spending hundreds of millions of dollars of taxpayer's money to build a sports arena for a billionaire. Then charging the taxpayers outrageous amounts to attend events there." — Stacy

        "How the US is systematically clawing back women's rights to decide what they do with their bodies. It's beyond shameful." — Jason.

        "Allowing guns everywhere." — Amy

        "That we drive fossil fuel-powered vehicles." — Heidi

        Some people are concerned about the way students and their parents behave in modern-day America.



        "Parents trying to run schools: yelling at teachers for their child’s poor performance, yelling at principals when their child gets in trouble, book banning based on an individual’s religious ideologies, etc." — Beth.

        "Entitled children talking back to their parents and teachers." — Connie

        "Cry rooms at universities where students can go and work out their anxiety and cry and be upset if their professor uses words that are too difficult for them. Universities are institutes of higher learning, not institutes of babysitting. That will be an embarrassment in the future, as it is an embarrassment to me and many others now." — Della

        In 30 years, we may be embarrassed to look back on the level of general civility in 2024.



        "Panic buying of toilet paper during the pandemic." — Tony

        "Ageism. It’s everywhere, all the time, and no one seems to mind. No one is defined by the amount of time they’ve spent on the planet but it’s used as an identity and as a weapon (ask any teenager, 40-year-old woman, or retiree…). I can only hope that one day it will be a source of embarrassment that we were all so dismissive and judgmental." — Rosy.

        "Human beings living on the street." — Andrea

        "Torturous killing of animals for food." — Mae

        While this list may seem like a litany of complaints people have about living in the modern world, it should give people hope. If we’ve overcome past embarrassments, today’s can be fixed as well.