From which group come better parents, Millennials or Baby Boomers?


Dear Lexis,

 I read an article on this topic and was curious what you would say. Do you believe that Millennials are better parents than Boomers?

 Curious in Lacey

Dear Curious,

It's an interesting question, but one that I don't think we'll be able to answer for many years to come because the only way to really test it, is by seeing how the children of these parents behave as adults.

What I can say, though, is that parents who don't dismiss input outright are likely to raise better children. We, as people, tend to throw the “baby out with the bathwater;” we don't take the time to truly evaluate what within a system worked and what didn't.

If you ever think that there is no redeeming aspect to something, I can guarantee that you aren't looking hard enough.

A prime example of this is punishment. Many Millennials try to forgo punishment entirely. They essentially allow their children to behave however they want, wherever they want. I often hear childhood trauma or abuse as the reason behind this, but we know that children benefit from structure. So, the question becomes, what type of punishment is appropriate and what behaviors warrant it?

For the most part, parents are left to decide this for themselves. Since all parents suffer from some level of personal baggage, we will inevitably make faulty decisions on this front. Knowing this, it can be really challenging to figure out where to go.

To me, the best piece of parenting advice I've ever heard though, is a very simple philosophy:

Never allow your children to do things that make you hate them.

I say this statement and most people scoff. “I could never hate my children,” they say. So, if this is you, then never allow your children to do things that make others hate them (although this one is a little harder to figure out).

The reason this philosophy is so powerful is that you're now teaching your children how to function well in a social environment. If you don't hate your children, then the chances are pretty good that other people won't either.

You can also apply this philosophy in any area of life. If your child is screaming in the grocery store, it probably is better to take them out to the car and express your displeasure at their behavior because letting them scream is just ruining your day, and the day of everyone else in the store.

Utilizing a philosophy like this can really help clarify things in a way that approaching specific issues individually can't. Now you have a sense of direction and a focus on a positive future for your child, which will likely lead to that future.

So, while I can't say whether Millennials or Baby Boomers make better parents, I can say that thoughtful reflection and direction are likely to aid you and your child to succeed down the road.

Lexis is Alexis Rae Baker. She writes from her home in Olympia.  Got a question about life, relationships, spirit? Visit her at or write to Lexis at 

EDITOR'S NOTES: The opinions expressed above are those of Alexis Rae Baker and not necessarily of The JOLT or its staff or board of directors. Alexis Rae Baker is not a licensed psychologist or specialist healthcare professional. Her advice does not replace the care of psychologists or other healthcare professionals.


Did you know that some Generation Z are adults and have children? To learn more about generation ages, click here. For a piece on “embracing the contradictions of parenthood,” click here.


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  • Terrilovesanimals

    Thanks for this. There are good and bad in both generations but I will say one thing. The boomers were more likely to have been raised to appreciate things and not "expect" everything to be handed to them. Hence, the entitled that we see so much of now! More was expected of the boomers and they in turn performed better in school and got jobs. Most of them raised their kids the same way. I do see some young people now that have it totally together which gives me hope, but SO many just don't, sadly.

    Tuesday, September 12, 2023 Report this