Generational Disparity

A Generation is commonly considered to be a period of around 20 years, that being the normal time between when a person is born and when they bring their first child onto the Earth. This time period, though, has not taken into consideration what has been happening in many of the countries of the world today.

How many people do you know that have married in their late twenties or early thirties. How many of those people have waited several years to have their first child when they feel more financially stable? This seems to be a trend, at least for my children and many of their friends.

In my family, generations are measured on a much longer time scale. I was the second of four children. We were born between 1947 and 1955. When I was born, in 1949, my father was already almost 52 years old, so my older brother marked a new generation in the family after 50 years (my father was born in 1897). Now let’s go back one more generation. My Grandfather was born in 1854. That was before the American Civil War. So that means that the previous generation spanned 43 years.

Let’s compare that to the 20 year generation definition. Grandchildren would be born when the grandparents were only 40 years old. Imagine yourself a grandparent at 40 instead of at 95 as in my case.

How do you measure a generation? Do you use a fixed time period or do you measure it in the actual years from your family experience?

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