Imagine former Secretary Hillary Clinton saying: “Kim K. give Tom C. a chance at the mirror and go tell your sister to stop ‘twerking’ to the Michael Jackson music

Humor me for a second by considering the following. Pick three individuals from the list: 

  • Tom Cruise
  • Miley Cyrus
  • Kim Kardashian
  • Hillary Clinton
  • President George H. Bush
  • Morgan Freeman 

Assume the three you picked are all members of a family (whatever your definition of family is) and please make sure they represent 3 separate generations. Ok, now put all three under one roof in a neighborhood here in the United States. Sounds interesting doesn’t it?

Now Consider These Points:

  1. A swell of 76+ million “Baby Boomers” are hurtling towards retirement, and a few more are added every time a sip of Starbuck’s coffee is taken. (That’s fast, people!) The Baby Boomers are the largest cohort in the history of the United States who are beginning to retire.
  2. “Generation X”, the Boomer’s children, are mostly in the primes of their careers. The (46+ million) Gen Xers also have children in grade school through higher education, which could be the Achilles’ heel of their own retirement planning.
  3. The largest generation in our great country’s history is “the Millennials”, 80+ million strong. Millennials are wiser beyond their years because they were born and educated during the renaissance of the computer age’s technologically savviness. They began competing with the Boomers and Gen Xers for employment but for less money and benefits because of the deep economic abyss “The Great Recession” caused.
  4. The “Great Recession” erased a lot of working monies and assets Boomers planned on using for retirement and diminishing inheritance that could be passed on to their children, the Gen Xers, and to their grandchildren, “The Millennials”.

Money is Easier Lost Than Earned

Recent history shows bank confidence, real estate investments, retirement plans, Mc-mansions and big time dreams, along with high paying jobs, went poof in “the blink of an eye”. 

Currently, our economy is rebounding faster than most economists predicted mainly because, as a country, we are becoming increasingly energy independent. The American spirit is resilient. However, there is no doubt Boomers have felt the strongest negative economic implications from the “Great Recession”.

Financial experts have pointed to all forms of Boomers’ planned retirement possibly taking severe losses. Government statistics also point out that Social Security and Medicare (programs meant to subsidize retirement through taxes) won’t be available in their current payout rate past 2037.

So what’s the point of this article and my opinions about cohorts in America?

ANSWER: The “Great Recession” may have done one unexpected feat after all! By no other means than necessity, it brought us closer together as families!

Consider This Little Known Fact

During the “Great Recession” there were more 2nd and 3rd generational households created out of necessity than at any other time in the previous 50 years! The family unit grew closer together if, for no other reason, each generation’s inter-woven living requirements (transportation, fuel, childcare, housing, groceries, healthcare, utilities, activities, etc.).

Ironically, multiple generations living under one roof, much like at the turn of the 20th Century, relearned how to socially interrelate in close living quarters, support each other and, in my opinion, the possibility that great grandmothers could pass on family ethos, mores, folklore, modeled practices and the oh-so-precious unwritten family traditions. Let’s learn about one another, America, and continue this unexpected gift that could serve us as a lesson and benefit to many grandparents and little ones alike . . . .

Why the Intro? 

When you rethink the celebrities at the beginning of this article, consider not the names of the individuals you chose, but each generation under one roof. So imagine former Secretary Hillary Clinton saying: “Kim K. give Tom C. a chance at the mirror and go tell your sister to stop ‘twerking’ to the Michael Jackson music because Mr. Freeman and former President G.H. Bush are trying to watch Top Gun . . . .”