Generation Y and Z don’t want to get too wasted to call their Uber – and have very different drinking habits than their parents. According to a recent survey by LA-based platform Eventbrite, 1023 millennials said that heavy drinking was something the “older generation” did, and only one in ten see getting drunk as “cool”. This might be really accurate. This doesn’t mean that millennials do not get really drunk – this means they don’t do it very often – not at all if possible.
Are millennials just distracted elsewhere?
It is important to remember that this is a generation who are extensively technology reliant – and does indeed try to solve most of its problems rather than drinking them away. Even if a millennial or a post-millennial is trying to distract themselves from an issue, they will binge-watch on Netflix or just hang out on Tinder rather than cracking open a beer. Or four.
Researchers are calling it a major shift in coping mechanism, which is shaped by their childhood. There is a difference between getting drunk and getting wasted, and millennials seem to have acquired a disdain for the latter. “Generation X was still suffering from a stiff upper lip problem, they used drink and drugs to hide their problems. Younger people don’t want to cover up their problems with drinking and drugs, they want to face them,” Nichi Hodgson, a dating and relationships expert, told The Telegraph. While Hodgson makes a valid point, it is not facing their problem millennials are keen about- it’s about putting them at the back of their minds or just dealing with it without going in too deep.
Millennials are more health conscious too.
They are of course a health conscious generation – a lot more aware and equipped than their parents were. An average, a working 20-year-old will clock in eight hours at work, check out a new jazz joint and will still make time for a workout and a juice.
“Yes, it’s partially that younger people don’t drink as much, but it’s also a case of older people cutting down. There’s definitely a sense that people are thinking, I can eat as much kale as I like, but it’s no good if I’m drinking five glasses of wine before bed. The idea behind mindful drinking is that you treat drinking as a special occasion and think about why you drink and how much. You don’t simply slug something down mindlessly in front of the TV,” Laura Willoughby, who co-founded London’s Club Soda, tells The Guardian.
Is drinking officially an old people thing?
So, it is essentially about making a choice – but it’s not all about being healthy. While that’s certainly a major component of generation Y and Z’s lives, most of them seem to be on a quest to find something new everyday. Drinking copious amounts of alcohol is already done and dusted in their books – and the hangover and the mistakes involved are just not worth it. Experts argue that it might just be a subconscious choice to stay safer, to make lesser mistakes, to distract oneself from the problems some other way.
Millennials have way more choice in drinks
“In the past, the type of non-alcoholic drinks on offer were terrible – you just got stuck with warm orange or Coke. Just because people don’t drink alcohol doesn’t mean that they don’t want something sophisticated that cleanses your palate,” says Mustafa Mahmud, the man who created the Walthamstow-based Shrb drinks, which is Instagram’s new favourite beverage. The millennials obviously have been given a lot more semi-alcoholic and non-alcoholic options to indulge in. No, they might not work like getting wasted, but it does beat repeating old patterns.