Therapist that coined 'honey badger generation' for Gen Alpha explains why it's perfect

"They have feral empathy"

Laura Loray; Gen Alpha; honey badger generation; honey badger; Gen Alpha activist; millennials
Courtesy of Laura Loray and RDNE|Canva

Therapist coins Gen Alpha the 'honey badger generation'

NOTE: One or more of the videos contained in this article may contain adult language.

There's always a lot of talk around Gen Z, but it turns out Generation Alpha are even more conscious of today's politics at an earlier age. In fact, they're not just more politically aware at a young age, they're more socially and emotionally aware with a strong sense of protection for those around them. This budding generation has earned themselves the moniker, "honey badger" across social media and it seems to be sticking.

Upworthy sat down with Laura Loray, a licensed clinical social worker and psychiatric nurse practitioner. Loray is the one who actually coined the term honey badger for this new generation. As someone who specializes in working with kids and adolescents, Gen Alpha falls right into her purview on a daily basis but it wasn't just her clients that sparked the endearing nickname.

"Obviously, we all remember that video from 15 years ago with the 'honey badger don't care, honey badger don't give a sh*t' and once I started seeing all these videos of parents saying their babies were built different," Loray recalls.

"I started really looking at them to see what this extra spiciness is about because they're very, very spicy and they just don't care. They're fearless and that's when it popped in my brain because honey badger don't care. I don't remember what video I first said it on but people in the comments agreed. It just fit like puzzle pieces, it just fit perfectly."

You may think with a nickname like honey badger that they wouldn't care about much of anything but Loray says Gen Alpha has feral empathy.

"They have this seemingly innate incredible amount of empathy to care for other, to want to know how others are feeling and then to take care of others, which I think is different from what we've been seeing in previous generations. They very much want to make sure other people around them are okay and they have this keen ability to put themselves in someone else's shoes," Loray explains.

The therapist tells Upworthy that this feral empathy and their ability to not back down or care what others think is what causes them to stand up for people and engage in protests. Yes, Gen Alpha has been engaging in and helping to organize protests though the oldest kids in the cohort are between 9 and 11. You can thank their feral empathy and their Millennial parents for their early activism.


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Parents of Gen Alpha are not only being their kids' rides to protests, but they're teaching them to use their voice via gentle parenting.

"I think that comes along with the gentle parenting as well because they're allowed space for us to model that for them and for them to be able to verbalize what they're feeling and thinking. A lot of us Millennials, even if we weren't necessarily trained in it (you know not just Millennials, it could be various generations in terms of parenting) but we're seeing that we can much better understand them when they're able to utilize those feeling words. It actually reducing their frustration, reduces their anger, it solves things quicker and I think us allowing for that space has been such a huge game changer," Loray tells Upworthy.


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The mom also explains that the teaching of social and emotional learning in school is also a large contributing factor because it teaches kids how to express what they need on top of how they feel. She says these lessons at school help them relate to others and will help them later in life in relationships and at work.

Clearly the honey badger generation has won the hearts of older generations but they've also won the hearts of animals. Loray has several videos on her social media page that shows this strange pull that Gen Alpha seems to have with animals, local wild life included. She doesn't really have an explanation to that but some would argue that animals can sense kindness in people, so maybe they're just drawn to that in this still growing generation.


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There really is no telling why squirrels, ducks, snakes and other creatures are perfectly happy in the company of these human honey badgers, but it's a pretty neat phenomenon. Loray thinks Gen Alpha will be the generation to rebuild systems in a way that would be beneficial to all citizens due to their feral empathy and innate moral compass. Only time will tell but they are certainly tiny and fierce, and we're lucky to know them.


Music’s biggest night took place Sunday, February 4 with the 66th Annual GRAMMY Awards. Now, fans have the opportunity to take home a piece of the famed event.

Longtime GRAMMY Awards partner Mastercard is using this year’s campaign to shine a light on the environment and the Priceless Planet Coalition (PPC), a forest restoration program with the goal of restoring 100 million trees. Music fans are 1.5 times more likely to take action to help the environment, making the GRAMMY Awards the perfect opportunity to raise awareness.

“Through our GRAMMY Awards campaign, we’ve created an opportunity for our brand, our partners and consumers to come together over shared values, to participate during a moment when we can celebrate our passion for music and our commitment to make meaningful investments to preserve the environment,” says Rustom Dastoor, Executive Vice President of Marketing and Communications, North America at Mastercard.

The campaign kicked off with an inspired self-guided multi-sensory tour at the GRAMMY House presented by Mastercard, where people journeyed through their passion of music and educational experience about Mastercard’s longstanding commitment to tree restoration. Then, this year’s most-nominated GRAMMY artist and a passionate voice for the environment, SZA, led the charge with the debut performance of her new song, Saturn.

Mastercard’s partners are also joining the mission by encouraging people all over the country to participate; Lyft and Sirius XM are both offering ways for consumers to get involved in the Priceless Planet Coalition. To learn more about how you can support these efforts, visit mastercard.com/forceofnature.

While fashion is always a highlight of any GRAMMY Awards event, SZA’s outfit worn during her performance of Saturn was designed to make a statement; made of tree seeds to help spread awareness. Fans can even comment ‘🌱’ and tag a friend on Mastercard’s designated post of SZA’s GRAMMY House performance for a chance to win a tree seed from the performance outfit*.

“SZA has a personal passion for sustainability – not just in forest restoration but in the clothes she wears and the platforms and partners she aligns herself with. It was important to us to partner with someone who is not only showing up big at the GRAMMY Awards – as the most GRAMMY-nominated artist this year – but also showing up big for the environment,” says Dastoor.

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How often do you change your sheets?

If you were to ask a random group of people, "How often do you wash your sheets?" you'd likely get drastically different answers. There are the "Every single Sunday without fail" folks, the "Who on Earth washes their sheets weekly?!?" people and everyone in between.

According to a survey of 1,000 Americans conducted by Mattress Advisor, the average time between sheet changings or washings in the U.S. is 24 days—or every 3 1/2 weeks, approximately. The same survey revealed that 35 days is the average interval at which unwashed sheets are "gross."

Some of you are cringing at those stats while others are thinking, "That sounds about right." But how often should you wash your sheets, according to experts?

Hint: It's a lot more frequent than 24 days.

While there is no definitive number of days or weeks, most experts recommend swapping out used sheets for clean ones every week or two.

Dermatologist Alok Vij, MD told Cleveland Clinic that people should wash their sheets at least every two weeks, but probably more often if you have pets, live in a hot climate, sweat a lot, are recovering from illness, have allergies or asthma or if you sleep naked.

We shed dead skin all the time, and friction helps those dead skin cells slough off, so imagine what's happening every time you roll over and your skin rubs on the sheets. It's normal to sweat in your sleep, too, so that's also getting on your sheets. And then there's dander and dust mites and dirt that we carry around on us just from living in the world, all combining to make for pretty dirty sheets in a fairly short period of time, even if they look "clean."

Maybe if you shower before bed and always wear clean pajamas you could get by with a two-week sheet swap cycle, but weekly sheet cleaning seems to be the general consensus among the experts. The New York Times consulted five books about laundry and cleaning habits, and once a week was what they all recommend.

Sorry, once-a-monthers. You may want to step up your sheet game a bit.

What about the rest of your bedding? Blankets and comforters and whatnot?

Sleep.com recommends washing your duvet cover once a week, but this depends on whether you use a top sheet. Somewhere between the Gen X and Millennial eras, young folks stopped being about the top sheet life, just using their duvet with no top sheet. If that's you, wash that baby once a week. If you do use a top sheet, you can go a couple weeks longer on the duvet cover.

For blankets and comforters and duvet inserts, Sleep.com says every 3 months. And for decorative blankets and quilts that you don't really use, once a year washing will suffice.

What about pillows? Pillowcases should go in with the weekly sheet washing, but pillows themselves should be washed every 3 to 6 months. Washing pillows can be a pain, and if you don't do it right, you can end up with a lumpy pillow, but it's a good idea because between your sweat, saliva and skin cells, pillows can start harboring bacteria.

Finally, how about the mattress itself? Home influencers on TikTok can often be seen stripping their beds, sprinkling their mattress with baking soda, brushing it into the mattress fibers and then vacuuming it all out. Architectural Digest says the longer you leave baking soda on the mattress, the better—at least a few hours, but preferably overnight. Some people add a few drops of essential oil to the baking soda for some extra yummy smell.

If that all sounds like way too much work, maybe just start with the sheets. Pick a day of the week and make it your sheet washing day. You might find that climbing into a clean, fresh set of sheets more often is a nice way to feel pampered without a whole lot of effort.

******No credits for pics*******

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Lately, art history majors have become something of a pop culture punching bag. Not only has the phrase become short-hand for "unemployable in today's economy," they've also been ridiculed by President Barack Obama on national television.

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Their artwork shows their strength, resilience, and talent.

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The pieces of artwork were submitted from various prisons across the country in hopes of being featured in "On the Inside," an exhibition of artwork by currently incarcerated LGBTQ inmates, curated by von Furstenberg and Black and Pink, a nonprofit organization that supports the LGBTQ community behind bars. The exhibit was held at the Abrons Arts Center in Manhattan toward the end of 2016.

"I put all the submissions on the floor and I saw that there were all these loving ones, these signs of affection, all of these two-spirit expressions of gender identity, and fairies and mermaids," von Furstenberg said.

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13 ways to avoid seeing Taylor Swift on screen during the Super Bowl game

If laying eyes on Travis Kelce's uber-famous girlfriend during the game bothers you, here are some helpful hacks for avoiding it.

We've solved the "problem" of the cameras panning to Taylor Swift during NFL games.

Super Bowl LVIII (that's 58 for those who've forgotten their Roman numerals) is set to take place on Sunday, Feb 11th between the Kansas City Chiefs and the San Francisco 49ers.

Or, according to some folks, between Taylor Swift fans and Taylor Swift anti-fans.

Since the relationship between the pop star and Chiefs tight end Travis Kelce became public, Swift has been coming to his games to cheer him on. And because Taylor Swift is, in fact, a global megastar, she's gotten a bit more screen time than other players' loved ones.

Some folks have had a hard time coping with this fact, however, loudly expressing their displeasure at having the cameras "constantly" pan to Taylor Swift during NFL games. Technically, she's only been on screen for an average of 25 seconds during each of the last four Chiefs games with an average camera shot being less than 8 seconds, but for some, that's still too much.

As we all know, it's an all-American right to watch football without seeing anything we don't want to see, so in the name of freedom and liberty, here are 13 hacks for avoiding Taylor Swift during the Super Bowl.

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