17 Things Old People Just Can’t Get On Board with Today

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By Jonathan Trent

There’s no doubt that older generations are perplexed by some modern practices and behaviors of younger people. From technological advancements to cultural shifts, there are some things today’s seniors just can’t seem to embrace. Here are 17 things old people just can’t get on board with today.

Social Media and Technology

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Many older people, baffled by the obsession with taking selfies and documenting every moment of one’s life prefer to live in the moment rather than behind a camera lens. Harvard Health emphasizes how in-person interactions with friends and family were associated with fewer mental health concerns for older people.


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Older people prefer to make a phone call to the person of their choice. This is largely because the acronyms commonly used in text messages leave older individuals feeling out of touch and longing for the days when complete sentences were the norm. While emojis add flair to digital communication for younger generations, older individuals often find themselves puzzled by texting protocol.

Fashion and Trends

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Putting holes in your jeans and wearing crop tops is a strange concept for older people. The popularity of modern fashion trends is foreign to older generations who grew up with more modest fashion trends. Instead of donning casual clothing items, older individuals opt for more formal attire, especially if they are attending a function.


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In modern society, we are all too familiar with the rapid spread of memes and internet humor. However, this can be bewildering for older individuals who struggle to keep up with the latest viral jokes and references. They are more familiar with getting their updates by watching the news or reading newspapers.

Plant-Based Diets

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With veganism on the rise and plant-based diets becoming more popular, there are now more vegan and vegetarian products than ever to choose from. While the idea of veganism may be familiar to some elderly, many find it difficult to get on board with it as they grew up eating meat and are unwilling to deviate from the diet they are comfortable eating.


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The concept of digital currency and blockchain technology can be difficult for older generations to grasp, leading many to view cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin with skepticism and confusion. Instead, they prefer to avoid investments that seem risky or untrustworthy.

Gaming Culture

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The phenomenon of e-sports and competitive gaming can be perplexing for older individuals who struggle to understand why millions of people tune in to watch others play video games competitively. Ironically, The Washington Post proposes the idea that technology can help seniors connect in real life through video chatting and virtual reality.


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The minimalist lifestyle trend can be puzzling for older generations who grew up in a time of material abundance and consumerism. Older people may be resistant to minimalism due to a lifetime of accumulating possessions and associating material wealth with success and security, finding it challenging to let go of sentimental attachments to belongings.


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Many older people struggle to understand the younger generation’s tendency to overspend, seeing it as a departure from traditional values of frugality and saving. They may perceive indulgent purchases like avocado toast and subscription services as unnecessary luxuries, contrasting with their own experiences of thriftiness and financial caution.

Smart Home Devices

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For older people, the hesitation towards smart home devices often stems from a lack of familiarity and comfort with technology, as well as concerns about privacy and security. They may prefer the reliability of manual controls and traditional home appliances, viewing smart devices as unnecessary gadgets that complicate rather than simplify daily routines. 

Online Dating

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Older people may struggle to embrace online dating due to generational differences in attitudes towards relationships and courtship. They may perceive online platforms as impersonal and superficial, preferring the organic interactions and social cues of traditional dating settings.

Subscription-based Services

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Older people often resist subscription-based services because they take a more conservative approach to spending and consumption. They may view recurring payments for services like streaming platforms and monthly subscription boxes as unnecessary expenses that add up over time.


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Older people may struggle to appreciate podcasts due to a lack of exposure to digital media and changing preferences in entertainment consumption. They may prefer traditional forms of media such as radio and television, finding comfort in familiar formats and programming.

Tattoos and Piercings

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Older peoples’ reluctance to embrace tattoos and piercings often reflects generational differences in attitudes towards body art and personal appearance. They may view tattoos and piercings as rebellious or unprofessional. According to Psych Central, as we age, our levels of calmness, self-confidence, leadership, and social sensitivity increase, meaning that we are less likely to make impulsive decisions.

Remote Learning

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Older people might find it hard to adjust to remote learning because of their limited tech familiarity. They may prefer traditional classroom settings for in-person engagement with instructors and peers, as remote learning can feel isolating and impersonal.

Online Shopping

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The elderly may hesitate to embrace online shopping due to a preference for the tactile experience of traditional retail settings and concerns about the reliability and quality of online purchases. They may value the personal interaction and customer service offered by brick-and-mortar stores. The Guardian highlighted as day-to-day services increasingly move to the internet, older and vulnerable people are cut off.

Mobile Payments

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The reluctance of older people to adopt mobile payments may stem from concerns about security and privacy, as well as a preference for traditional forms of payment such as cash and credit cards. They may be wary of the potential risks associated with storing sensitive financial information on their smartphones and the potential for fraud or identity theft.

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