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Subject: Didn't 90s teens seem alot older?

Written By: Marty McFly on 11/15/08 at 8:46 pm

For awhile I thought it might've just been my personal perspective in the early-mid '90s (obviously if you're a 10 or 12 year old kid, teenagers are gonna seem notably bigger and older than you, sometimes to where it might be intimidating), but when I watch movies or tv footage now, even from my 27 year old perspective those teens STILL seem older than their age.

Sure they still acted young and teenish, but in a more mature way if that makes any sense. I can't think of one specific example, but they dressed in that grunge style lots of the time, and just seemed more adventurous and rebellious. Like I remember news stories of them running away to live on the streets and seemed to want to break away from their parents or go on roadtrips and stuff. The movies exaggerate it a bit, but that basic stuff seems pretty right on from what I remember.

I'm thinking the average teen of, say 1993 seemed gritter and older compared to teens now because they weren't nearly as technology obsessed (texting and stuff). They also seemed more down to earth and socially concerned, which is really ironic because we actually live in a tougher world now (with a war, dwindling economy and just more concerns), whereas the '90s were pretty carefree by comparison.

Have any of you guys noticed this, or am I seeing something that's not there? I know this stuff obviously doesn't apply to everyone since we're all indidivuals.

Subject: Re: Didn't 90s teens seem alot older?

Written By: 90steen on 11/16/08 at 2:54 pm

Yes, I noticed this because I was a 90's teen, and a very rebellious one, at that.

My daughter is only 3 months old, but I have a 17 and a 15 year old nephew and I keep in touch with them often and things just are not the same anymore.

Their world is myspace and texting and they don't go out of their way or take risks mainly because of technology.

Back when I was their age, we used to be silly of course, but we weren't afraid to run away when we felt like we needed to, and we weren't stuck in home on computers. We were adventurous. And this may sound bad, but there were times when we would be stranded miles and miles away from our house and we learned more from our mistakes.

I also never had a cell phone, but I did have a pager  ;D

Subject: Re: Didn't 90s teens seem alot older?

Written By: Step-chan on 11/16/08 at 4:23 pm


For awhile I thought it might've just been my personal perspective in the early-mid '90s (obviously if you're a 10 or 12 year old kid, teenagers are gonna seem notably bigger and older than you, sometimes to where it might be intimidating), but when I watch movies or tv footage now, even from my 27 year old perspective those teens STILL seem older than their age.

Sure they still acted young and teenish, but in a more mature way if that makes any sense. I can't think of one specific example, but they dressed in that grunge style lots of the time, and just seemed more adventurous and rebellious. Like I remember news stories of them running away to live on the streets and seemed to want to break away from their parents or go on roadtrips and stuff. The movies exaggerate it a bit, but that basic stuff seems pretty right on from what I remember.

I'm thinking the average teen of, say 1993 seemed gritter and older compared to teens now because they weren't nearly as technology obsessed (texting and stuff). They also seemed more down to earth and socially concerned, which is really ironic because we actually live in a tougher world now (with a war, dwindling economy and just more concerns), whereas the '90s were pretty carefree by comparison.

Have any of you guys noticed this, or am I seeing something that's not there? I know this stuff obviously doesn't apply to everyone since we're all indidivuals.


I'm not sure myself. I never really paid attention.

Subject: Re: Didn't 90s teens seem alot older?

Written By: snozberries on 11/16/08 at 6:37 pm


For awhile I thought it might've just been my personal perspective in the early-mid '90s (obviously if you're a 10 or 12 year old kid, teenagers are gonna seem notably bigger and older than you, sometimes to where it might be intimidating), but when I watch movies or tv footage now, even from my 27 year old perspective those teens STILL seem older than their age.

Sure they still acted young and teenish, but in a more mature way if that makes any sense. I can't think of one specific example, but they dressed in that grunge style lots of the time, and just seemed more adventurous and rebellious. Like I remember news stories of them running away to live on the streets and seemed to want to break away from their parents or go on roadtrips and stuff. The movies exaggerate it a bit, but that basic stuff seems pretty right on from what I remember.

I'm thinking the average teen of, say 1993 seemed gritter and older compared to teens now because they weren't nearly as technology obsessed (texting and stuff). They also seemed more down to earth and socially concerned, which is really ironic because we actually live in a tougher world now (with a war, dwindling economy and just more concerns), whereas the '90s were pretty carefree by comparison.

Have any of you guys noticed this, or am I seeing something that's not there? I know this stuff obviously doesn't apply to everyone since we're all indidivuals.


have you ever seen the movie Over the Edge with Matt Dillon it was made in 1979 and I don't know sounds like some of the qualities you're attributing to 90s teens was present in that movie as well.

Subject: Re: Didn't 90s teens seem alot older?

Written By: Marty McFly on 11/16/08 at 6:50 pm


Yes, I noticed this because I was a 90's teen, and a very rebellious one, at that.

My daughter is only 3 months old, but I have a 17 and a 15 year old nephew and I keep in touch with them often and things just are not the same anymore.

Their world is myspace and texting and they don't go out of their way or take risks mainly because of technology.

Back when I was their age, we used to be silly of course, but we weren't afraid to run away when we felt like we needed to, and we weren't stuck in home on computers. We were adventurous. And this may sound bad, but there were times when we would be stranded miles and miles away from our house and we learned more from our mistakes.

I also never had a cell phone, but I did have a pager  ;D



Thanks for the input. :)  Isn't it funny how the current generation is probably getting LESS wild now?

Yeah, texting as a HOBBY seems so obnoxious and stupid. I wouldn't have liked it when I was 15 either because it tends to be this cliquey thing people only do with who they like. But yeah, I think that's got something to do with it. You guys tended to have more "real world experience" which made you seem older and more interesting.

I'm really a 90s teen myself, but I'm more talking of the grunge era (who would be like 32 today). I see you guys as the same age group since it's just a few years apart and we grew up with alot of the same stuff, but I think that's where there's a notable difference. When I was in late elementary in 1992/93, my school bus actually picked up some high schoolers who shared the route with us. At first they were so intimidating to me - the guys were cool, just rowdy. I was actually more scared to talk to the girls (being way bigger AND cute, lol). If you did that same setup now, I bet the 10 and 15 year olds would seem alot more similar! :D

That's another thing too, (literal) children and teens seemed to be living in different worlds from each other. Maybe not having all this tech made the kids stay kids longer while the high schoolers seemed more mature!

Subject: Re: Didn't 90s teens seem alot older?

Written By: Marty McFly on 11/16/08 at 6:54 pm


have you ever seen the movie Over the Edge with Matt Dillon it was made in 1979 and I don't know sounds like some of the qualities you're attributing to 90s teens was present in that movie as well.



Actually I haven't. :) I'll have to check that out, I like some of Matt's stuff. It seems like teens of that era were pretty wild and rebellious too, maybe even moreso than most generations (meaning like the current 47 year old or so).

The '70s and the '90s both seemed a bit more adventurous and gritty when it came to daily life. The 80s and now are more into material things and partying and generally seem less mature. I don't mean either of these things in a bad way, just an observation.

Subject: Re: Didn't 90s teens seem alot older?

Written By: ladybug316 on 11/16/08 at 10:39 pm


have you ever seen the movie Over the Edge with Matt Dillon it was made in 1979 and I don't know sounds like some of the qualities you're attributing to 90s teens was present in that movie as well.

Holy crap, Snoz, I've actually seen that film!!  Oh, pick yourself up, ya big drama queen!  ;D

Sorry to get off topic, but I'm sure the internet plays a huge part in this, having the world at your fingertips and all.  On the down side, maybe many of the teen risk-takers are the ones who would meet a stranger (read: predator) they met on the internet.

Subject: Re: Didn't 90s teens seem alot older?

Written By: Midas on 11/17/08 at 3:18 pm

I think it's all relative.  For example, I thought teens seemed a lot older in the 70's-80's when I was growing up.  Most teens today look like kids.

Subject: Re: Didn't 90s teens seem alot older?

Written By: Marty McFly on 11/17/08 at 3:42 pm


I think it's all relative.  For example, I thought teens seemed a lot older in the 70's-80's when I was growing up.  Most teens today look like kids.


That's true and i did think of that...but like I said, even NOW when I watch a movie, tv show or some other footage of the early-mid 90s, the average teenagers STILL seem older than their age. They still acted like teens, but had a more mature outlook on life or things they wanted to do. They looked older too, like 16 year olds seemed 20 - now the opposite is true!

Subject: Re: Didn't 90s teens seem alot older?

Written By: Midas on 11/17/08 at 3:48 pm


That's true and i did think of that...but like I said, even NOW when I watch a movie, tv show or some other footage of the early-mid 90s, the average teenagers STILL seem older than their age. They still acted like teens, but had a more mature outlook on life or things they wanted to do. They looked older too, like 16 year olds seemed 20 - now the opposite is true!


I agree with that, then again, it seems like there were actual 20-somethings playing teens in tv shows and movies a lot more than what we see now. :)

Subject: Re: Didn't 90s teens seem alot older?

Written By: Marty McFly on 11/17/08 at 3:54 pm

Oh true, sometimes actors even up to their early 30s have played teens in movies!

There's this one Jerry Springer rerun I have on tape from 1994 (before the show sold out and became white trash) where he went to visit homeless teenagers on the streets in LA, and that's a perfect example because it's real people as it happened. Like there was one group of kids who lived in a squat and hung out together and just seemed pretty cool, you dont really hear of stuff like that now.

I'm sure the more old school, laid back way of life exists in like Nebraska or rural areas more than in big cities (where a majority of typical teens are into texting and sh*t), but I dunno how to describe it other than sometimes a certain decade has a "feel" to it by the way its people act, especially the youth.

P.S. I think it makes me feel "less aged" to see mature acting teens (in any sense of the word), so that's one reason I miss that. Thats probably why I resent the bratty texting ones, makes me feel like an even more out of touch older dude and that's not a good feeling.

That;s also why I think it's really cool to see kids who dig 80s and 90s (or whatever) retro stuff. Makes me feel less pathetic and old for being semi-stuck in the past. ;)

Subject: Re: Didn't 90s teens seem alot older?

Written By: midnite on 11/17/08 at 5:36 pm

Didn't 90s ADULTS seem older?  LOL.  I know guys, who are techniclly adults, but seem like kids, who play video games and live with their parents.  Can anyone say BIG KIDS?

Subject: Re: Didn't 90s teens seem alot older?

Written By: Marty McFly on 11/17/08 at 5:47 pm

^ True I think MOST everyone (anyone over like 14/15) seemed older than. The tendency among lots of people now is to act younger, maybe because of the materialism, technology and party atmosphere it has.

Subject: Re: Didn't 90s teens seem alot older?

Written By: midnite on 11/17/08 at 6:06 pm

^yup.  And the high divorce rate, means more single party people acting like kids.  LOL.

Subject: Re: Didn't 90s teens seem alot older?

Written By: tv on 11/17/08 at 6:57 pm


Actually I haven't. :) I'll have to check that out, I like some of Matt's stuff. It seems like teens of that era were pretty wild and rebellious too, maybe even moreso than most generations (meaning like the current 47 year old or so).

The '70s and the '90s both seemed a bit more adventurous and gritty when it came to daily life. The 80s and now are more into material things and partying and generally seem less mature. I don't mean either of these things in a bad way, just an observation.
I think people that grew up as teens in the 80's and 00's are just more about acting their age whereas teens that grew up in the 90's wanted to act more adult-like.

Subject: Re: Didn't 90s teens seem alot older?

Written By: snozberries on 11/18/08 at 7:22 pm


Holy crap, Snoz, I've actually seen that film!!  Oh, pick yourself up, ya big drama queen!  ;D

Sorry to get off topic, but I'm sure the internet plays a huge part in this, having the world at your fingertips and all.  On the down side, maybe many of the teen risk-takers are the ones who would meet a stranger (read: predator) they met on the internet.



OMG You saw a movie!!!!  :o 




;D

Subject: Re: Didn't 90s teens seem alot older?

Written By: snozberries on 11/18/08 at 7:24 pm


That's true and i did think of that...but like I said, even NOW when I watch a movie, tv show or some other footage of the early-mid 90s, the average teenagers STILL seem older than their age. They still acted like teens, but had a more mature outlook on life or things they wanted to do. They looked older too, like 16 year olds seemed 20 - now the opposite is true!



actually usually in movies and tv actors are older than the age they play so I would check the actor's bio and find their actual age at the time they made that film before attributing that look to that age.

Subject: Re: Didn't 90s teens seem alot older?

Written By: ladybug316 on 11/18/08 at 7:25 pm



OMG You saw a movie!!!!  :o 




;D




You and I may be the only ones who've ever seen that particular movie.  We had that on Betamax  :o

Subject: Re: Didn't 90s teens seem alot older?

Written By: snozberries on 11/18/08 at 7:30 pm



^ I Really need to read all the posts before I reply...guess you already covered the age of actors.  ;D




Oh true, sometimes actors even up to their early 30s have played teens in movies!

There's this one Jerry Springer rerun I have on tape from 1994 (before the show sold out and became white trash) where he went to visit homeless teenagers on the streets in LA, and that's a perfect example because it's real people as it happened. Like there was one group of kids who lived in a squat and hung out together and just seemed pretty cool, you dont really hear of stuff like that now.

I'm sure the more old school, laid back way of life exists in like Nebraska or rural areas more than in big cities (where a majority of typical teens are into texting and sh*t), but I dunno how to describe it other than sometimes a certain decade has a "feel" to it by the way its people act, especially the youth.

P.S. I think it makes me feel "less aged" to see mature acting teens (in any sense of the word), so that's one reason I miss that. Thats probably why I resent the bratty texting ones, makes me feel like an even more out of touch older dude and that's not a good feeling.

That;s also why I think it's really cool to see kids who dig 80s and 90s (or whatever) retro stuff. Makes me feel less pathetic and old for being semi-stuck in the past. ;)



you know there is a trend in what's covered... like in the 80s it was alot about homeless kids and gang bangers.  in the 90s it was alot about kidnappings, and earlier this decade it's been about wife killing....


The thing is these things continue to happen whether you're hearing about it or not.



Subject: Re: Didn't 90s teens seem alot older?

Written By: Reefmonkey on 11/21/08 at 12:41 pm

I'm of the age group that you speak, as I am 32. Were we older than teens now? It certainy seems that way, but that may just be because I am older now and they seem so young to me.

In some ways, it seems that teens are engaging in behavior that at first blush seems more "mature" than how we acted. Teens seem so hypersexualized, having sex at younger ages, being more casual about sex. For us, coming off the almost neovictorian Reagan years, plus living under the height of AIDS fearfulness, there was some restraint about sex. Sure, we had it, but we weren't as cavalier about it. Nice middle-class high school girls didn't send nude pictures to their boyfriends - first, since there were no digital cameras, they would have had to get them developed at like the drug store, and second, they would have to give hard copies by hand to their boyfriends, it would seem more "real" than just hitting "send" on email or smartphone (which we didn't have back then). Plus, we didn't have the "girls gone wild" mentality. Cable was still relatively new to us, we didn't grow up with it, and it remained less racy than it is now. Now it seems that girls of all walks of life are posting nude, sometimes explicit pictures of themselves online. check out ishotmyself dot com for an example (Not Safe for Work).

The other thing is drugs. For those of us who were teens in the 90s, Nancy Reagan's war on drugs had made an impact on us. For a while, coke was dead, middle class teens of the 90s didn't really do it, and we were just easing back into pot use at that time. It was something only a subset of us did, it wasn't something everyone was supposed to have done on and off, not really until I got to college. Very few kids would have thought of raiding their parents' medicine cabinets for vicodin, and those kids who did were secretive about it, and were seen by everyone else as being messed up. Drugs weren't acceptable - football players (except for juicing), cheerleaders, class presidents, etc. weren't sleeping around and doing recreational drugs in the open like they seem to be now.


If teens are less mature, I think a lot of it comes from the fact that they have so much more material affluence than we did. You gotta remember, for those of us who were born in the 70s, the economy wasn't nearly as good to us when we were in grade school than it was for those who were born in the 90s. We came off the "malaise" of the Carter years and the Recession of the later Reagan and Bush Sr years. A lot of us remember our parents struggling financially, or at least being worried, for at least a few years on and off during that time. These kids are coming off the late Clinton years through most of the 00s - a soaring stock market coupled with the sudden availability of all sorts of informaiton off the internet, along with the widespread availability and lowered prices of consumer electronics. Seems every teen has a cell phone now , something that would have been inconceivable to me at 16. They have also become much more fashion conscious. When I was going to SMU, a fairly rich, preppy school from 1994-1998, a polo shirt and chinos was pretty much always the right thing to wear whether you were going to a bar or out with a girl, and the T-shirts we wore were usually from a fraternity party we had gone to. Now it's all hollister, abercrombie and fitch for "supercasual" and D&G and Prada for dressing to impress. If you're going to wear a t-shirt, it seems it has to be some retro-kitschy clever shirt that looks like it's from the 1970s and you got it from a thrift store, but you actually bought it at some high-end store in the mall, and it's one practically everyone has a copy of. In my day (damn I am old) anyone who wore a shirt that looked like it came from the 70s was ACTUALLY wearing one from the 70s that they ACTUALLY found in the Salvation Army thrift store, and they actually were daring to be different. There is a lot of self-consciousness about dress that there wasn't so much of in the 90s, and a lot of artifice, a lot of posing that wasn't there either.

Speaking of artifice, let's talk about music. I know, it seems like every person, once they hit their 30s, gets stuck in a time warp and decides the music of their youth was the zenith of music and what has come after is crap, but in this case, I have a real case to make that the music of the 90s was so much better than the music of 2008. First of all, there was so much choice of what to listen to - we had rap, but we also had grunge, alternative rock (think REM), Southern California sound (think Red Hot Chili Peppers), crossover R&B (think Boys 2 Men), industrial, metal, various dance and techno subgenres, etc. Now it seems that there are fewer choices - there is the bubblegum Britany Spears-like crap, the guys who can play exactly 2 guitar chords and all sound alike, or hip hop. Music in the 90s had and edge to it, it had a "survival of the fittest" quality, of struggling bands that wrote their own music and played local clubs and coffee houses until they were discovered, so naturally it was going to be good. They also created their own genuine image. Now so many of the popular acts are groups or singers that have been manufactured by producers who tell them what to sing and how to dress and act onstage and in public to put across a manufactured, corporate rock image. It's American Idol winners, singing music written for them by label-paid songwriters, wearing clothes given to them by label-paid stylists.

There were also no Paris Hiltons or other "celebutantes" who were famous for nothing more than being famous that girls would emulate.

So, I think there is a syntheticism pushed by the media that has made teens much more vapid, more shallow, more materialistic than previous teens were. I think the prosperity of the mid-late 90s through early 00s also made them spoiled. I remember the early 90s being a new era of valuing the bohemian lifestyle (not just wanting to dress like you did) and also a resurgence in interest in the environment, something that slacked off later on, when we become more consumerist. As an environmental scientist, that has concerned me. I do believe that there is reason to be hopeful, though. We are sliding into a recession that is going to be long and hard, but the good thing is that it is really finally punishing greed. The need for the wall street bailout, and the reprocussions of how badly the wall street guys handled the money they got has shown that. Saying you are an investment banker anywhere in the country is like announcing that you are an abortion doctor at a southern baptist convention. Just as people in the early 90s were sick of the greed of the 80s like junk bonds, the S&L scandal, etc. that led to the 87 wall street crash, people are sick of greed again in 2008. That means people are going to be less materialistic. Plus, almost everyone is spending less. Parents aren't going to be buying their kids the latest iPhone or high end designer labels for a while - some kids may find their parents' home foreclosed. These kids are going to have a less materialistic, more realistic outlook on life. This bit of adversity will make a whole generation of people better than they would be otherwise - as Nietzche said "whatever doesn't kill you makes you stronger". Plus, in the last couple of years, I have been happy to see a resurgence in environmentalism, and I see it being embraced on a far wider scale than ever before. I also see more young people voting in this last election that have ever voted before - and almost all of them for a candidate who calls them to be a part of hopeful change for our country. I am more hopeful for the prospects of America and the world than I have ever been in my entire life.

Another possible hypothesis. Those of us who were born in the late 70s still weren't quite as overscheduled as kids have been since - we were able to act like kids while we were kids, get it out of our system, we could be more mature as adults? Also, maybe the youth-obsession of our society, which seems to have gotten worse in the last 10 years, has trickled down to teenagers?

Subject: Re: Didn't 90s teens seem alot older?

Written By: Reefmonkey on 11/21/08 at 2:44 pm


If you go through my old year book it looks like a school of 25-30 year old Narcs pretending to be high schoolers!



Was the address of your high school "21 Jump Street" by chance?

Subject: Re: Didn't 90s teens seem alot older?

Written By: ninny on 11/21/08 at 3:26 pm

I'm not sure if they seem older,or just try to appear that way. I think they were allowed to do more things than back in my day(the 70's)I believe they got away with alot more.

Subject: Re: Didn't 90s teens seem alot older?

Written By: Reefmonkey on 11/21/08 at 3:54 pm

Another thing, I think parents are getting more protective of kids than they used to be, not letting them mature and take chances. I think the rise of home schooling really shows this. Also, college professors are reporting a rise in "helicopter" parents, who "hover" around their kids even after they go off to college. Profs report getting more and more emails from parents demanding to know why their special child got a cetain grade.

Subject: Re: Didn't 90s teens seem alot older?

Written By: snozberries on 11/21/08 at 4:17 pm


Another thing, I think parents are getting more protective of kids than they used to be, not letting them mature and take chances. I think the rise of home schooling really shows this. Also, college professors are reporting a rise in "helicopter" parents, who "hover" around their kids even after they go off to college. Profs report getting more and more emails from parents demanding to know why their special child got a cetain grade.



they are not kidding. I live and work in a college town and have never seen so many parents call up trying to fix their "baby's" problem.

It's always:
ME: Sir/ma'am is your child over the age of 18? Yes? Then they have to make this call themselves.
THEM: But they don't know how- or this is their first time....
ME: Well there's a first time for everything but if they need help they will have to call me in order for me to help them.  ::)

Subject: Re: Didn't 90s teens seem alot older?

Written By: Kelseyyy on 11/23/08 at 12:13 pm

I know exactly what you mean. I mean, I was a little kid in the 90's (born in 91) but I mean even if I look at the video yearbooks from when my sisters were in high school, it just doesn't even seem like they even near my age now. I'm probably explaining it very strangely xD but..hopefully you get me.

Subject: Re: Didn't 90s teens seem alot older?

Written By: Katie on 11/23/08 at 11:23 pm

One of my younger brothers was a teen in the 90's , and he was very mature, even though he was a typical teen.  My other brother is completly different. 
My youngest brother, who is now 17 is very immature, but really a good person (most other teens appear more mature than him).  Just today the whole family went out to dinner to a semi-fancy restaurant.  He was wearing his hat sideways as he always does.  Our mom asked him to take it off at the restaurant, and he said he just wont go then, so they just let him wear it.  Throughout the dinner he was sending text messages, and left the table about 4 times to go outside (probably to smoke).  He just doesn't seem to care to be mature, or care what others think of him.  Although I know he loves his family and he really cares about alot of things, but he just doesn't seem to want to be mature. 

Subject: Re: Didn't 90s teens seem alot older?

Written By: 90steen on 11/25/08 at 1:13 pm

It's all the little things that all collide into one big thing that makes teens from the 90's seem older for their age than teens from now.

I feel sorry for teens of now, they won't really have much to tell their generation about their adventures.

What will they say to their kids?

"When I was 15, I logged onto myspace and my friend sent me a comment and (s)he came over my house."

Subject: Re: Didn't 90s teens seem alot older?

Written By: tv on 11/27/08 at 10:15 am


Another thing, I think parents are getting more protective of kids than they used to be, not letting them mature and take chances. I think the rise of home schooling really shows this. Also, college professors are reporting a rise in "helicopter" parents, who "hover" around their kids even after they go off to college. Profs report getting more and more emails from parents demanding to know why their special child got a cetain grade.
I would have rather been "home schooled" for High School than have gone to High School to tell you the truth and I did graduate High School in the 90's(1998.) I wouldn;t want my mom hovering over me in college though thats ridiculous or my one of parents telling my professing that I deserve a certain grade though.

Subject: Re: Didn't 90s teens seem alot older?

Written By: tv on 11/27/08 at 10:19 am


It's all the little things that all collide into one big thing that makes teens from the 90's seem older for their age than teens from now.

I feel sorry for teens of now, they won't really have much to tell their generation about their adventures.

What will they say to their kids?

"When I was 15, I logged onto myspace and my friend sent me a comment and (s)he came over my house."
I or he came through her bedroom window at 2:30 am in the morning after she sent me a myspace message ..now thats sort of adventerous.

Subject: Re: Didn't 90s teens seem alot older?

Written By: Matt the Rat76 on 11/27/08 at 6:11 pm

I was a 90's teen also (32 now) and I was not a grunge teen nor wild teens like today I love summer nights sitting on the porch and watching tv in the patio.also I am amazed before all the internet era and myspace world we talk on the phone or have friends over,and there was no e-mails or texting on cell phone or I pods nor blackberry in the 90's was cool for me as a teen until I reached in my 20's it seems to me 90's became a fast year!

Subject: Re: Didn't 90s teens seem alot older?

Written By: Cautious Lip on 01/26/09 at 8:18 pm

90's teens may have SEEMED old but they didn't look as old as 70's teens. I was in high school from 76' through 79' and as I recall the kids looked so much older than teens. Especially the girls.

Subject: Re: Didn't 90s teens seem alot older?

Written By: 90steen on 01/27/09 at 1:17 pm


90's teens may have SEEMED old but they didn't look as old as 70's teens. I was in high school from 76' through 79' and as I recall the kids looked so much older than teens. Especially the girls.


I think it has something to do with the styles. Young girls did their hair in ways that made them look very sophisticated. Farrah Fawcett hair, and then there would be the girls who had very long and straight natural hair.

But back to the 90's, I can definitely say I lived like a college kid when I was a teen. Being born in 1980, my teen years were mostly the mid-90's, (1993 - 1997) I was definitely not a good role model, especially to my nephews and my niece, who are all doing very fine right now.

I was a pothead, an alcoholic, of course I couldn't buy alcohol so I used to steal it, I used to smoke pot in my house on purpose just to make my dad mad, and I was in a special program in highschool for bad and rebellious kids. Cussed at my dad and teachers, and shoplifted... But it's all a phase grown out of thankfully.

Being that said, partying is something I did all the time, even on weekdays. Once in awhile I would go to school with a hangover, worst thing ever.

They say that as time goes on, kids get more and more rebellious, but when I talk to my 16 year old nephew he tells me things like that don't really happen too much anymore. There's more of physical violence and fighting, and not as much partying going on.

I guess that makes us seem older than kids of today, and 90's styles.

Subject: Re: Didn't 90s teens seem alot older?

Written By: Marty McFly on 01/27/09 at 1:57 pm


I think it has something to do with the styles. Young girls did their hair in ways that made them look very sophisticated. Farrah Fawcett hair, and then there would be the girls who had very long and straight natural hair.

But back to the 90's, I can definitely say I lived like a college kid when I was a teen. Being born in 1980, my teen years were mostly the mid-90's, (1993 - 1997) I was definitely not a good role model, especially to my nephews and my niece, who are all doing very fine right now.

I was a pothead, an alcoholic, of course I couldn't buy alcohol so I used to steal it, I used to smoke pot in my house on purpose just to make my dad mad, and I was in a special program in highschool for bad and rebellious kids. Cussed at my dad and teachers, and shoplifted... But it's all a phase grown out of thankfully.

Being that said, partying is something I did all the time, even on weekdays. Once in awhile I would go to school with a hangover, worst thing ever.

They say that as time goes on, kids get more and more rebellious, but when I talk to my 16 year old nephew he tells me things like that don't really happen too much anymore. There's more of physical violence and fighting, and not as much partying going on.

I guess that makes us seem older than kids of today, and 90's styles.


Excellent points dude! :) Yes, I've thought about that myself alot too - how it seems to be almost regressing in terms of teens being rebellious now, from what I can gather. In the '90s I think it kinda went as far as it could go. Even though I wasn't at all like that, I knew alot of kids that were (even some of my friends). I don't asvise doing that stuff of course, but I think that made our generation more fun and interesting in a way.

Teens did seem to purposely want to defy authority and p*ss off their parents then. The only thing that might be kinda different and less innocent these days, is teen girls dressing more slutty sometimes. I remember that starting around '98/99 when I was in late high school, maybe because of Britney? I always personally thought girls looked cooler and way cuter in the early-mid '90s with their "one of the guys" casual style of dressing (like the flannel grunge stuff) and it ironically made them look older too.

Subject: Re: Didn't 90s teens seem alot older?

Written By: whistledog on 01/27/09 at 2:00 pm

Not just the 90s, but decadees before that.  When I was in high school, the kids in older grades towered over me.  You see HS kids today, and they're barely out of diapers

Subject: Re: Didn't 90s teens seem alot older?

Written By: scottyb on 01/27/09 at 5:06 pm

well i had 2 older sisters who were both teens in the 90's and my oldest sister looked like she was 20 when she was only 14 same for my other one i was only a kid/pree teen in the 90's.

i also noticed that at my high school all the incoming freshmen seems to get smaller and younger by the day and I'm noticing that as a college student as well

Subject: Re: Didn't 90s teens seem alot older?

Written By: Marty McFly on 01/27/09 at 8:35 pm


That's because you're just so ooooooooooollllllldddddd!  ;D

Kinda on that subject, a side effect is seeing all those HS classmates on Facebook. Up until a year or two my images of them were still as teens. And now they're adults!


Yeah, I think we always see people as being the same age (however old they were when we met them). Especially if you go awhile without seeing them, even if you know time has passed, that's your "picture" of them.

Like I had one babysitter when I was little, and I basically think of her as being "an 18 year old of 1986" who just slowly grew up more and became around 40 today. But if I met her for the first time now I'd probably think of her as being way older. Your mind kinda plays tricks on you depending on your perspective, it's funny.

I basically agree with you though. It just depends on the person too, though. There's times I've been shocked (both ways) by someone's age. There can be mature teens, or like youngish 35 year olds.

Subject: Re: Didn't 90s teens seem alot older?

Written By: Julie E. on 01/27/09 at 10:03 pm


Teens did seem to purposely want to defy authority and p*ss off their parents then.


I agree that it hasn't gotten any worse, possibly better.  This past Christmas our guests included 16 and 18 year old nephews.
I didn't like the way they dressed, they were wearing their hats backwards/to the side and their pants too low.  And the 18 year old kept going outside to smoke a cigarette.  Other then that they showed no sign that they were trying to disrespect their family,they even got gifts for everyone. :)

Subject: Re: Didn't 90s teens seem alot older?

Written By: 80sfan on 01/28/09 at 1:46 pm

Because our idols now are Hannah Montana and The Jonas Brothers!  8-P It's subconscious.

I noticed kids looking younger about fall 1999. Before that, 7th and 8th graders looked like they were about 18 and 19 years old to me.

Back then idols were Korn, Mariah Carey, Nirvana. All adult contemporary!

I want a 14 year old to look 14, not like a 10 year old!

Subject: Re: Didn't 90s teens seem alot older?

Written By: 90steen on 01/28/09 at 8:55 pm


Excellent points dude! :) Yes, I've thought about that myself alot too - how it seems to be almost regressing in terms of teens being rebellious now, from what I can gather. In the '90s I think it kinda went as far as it could go. Even though I wasn't at all like that, I knew alot of kids that were (even some of my friends). I don't asvise doing that stuff of course, but I think that made our generation more fun and interesting in a way.

Teens did seem to purposely want to defy authority and p*ss off their parents then. The only thing that might be kinda different and less innocent these days, is teen girls dressing more slutty sometimes. I remember that starting around '98/99 when I was in late high school, maybe because of Britney? I always personally thought girls looked cooler and way cuter in the early-mid '90s with their "one of the guys" casual style of dressing (like the flannel grunge stuff) and it ironically made them look older too.


I agree. My little brother was more of a late 90's teen (born in 1982) and his little girlfriends dressed like tramps.

My girl friends definitely didn't dress guyish because none of us were into the grunge thing too much, we loved the rap and pop music, pretty much what shows on the top 100 billboards now we loved. However, they did where the flannel shirts and flannel jackets.

Being that said, they dressed preppy, but not like skanks. The best I can refer to is the way the girls from Clueless dressed... a lot of preppy plaid colorful clothes. But nothing slutty.
My sister had a thing for short skirts and belly shirts though.... but I don't count her as a friend, just family  ;D

Subject: Re: Didn't 90s teens seem alot older?

Written By: joeman on 01/29/09 at 10:53 am

I guess it depends on the type of music they listened too as well.  Grunge and Alternative Rock in general were music that focused on everyday life instead of being bubblegumish love songs from before and after that time period.

My brother was a teen in the early 90's(1979), and he and his friends acted a lot more mature as teens as oppose to the teens in my High School in the late 90s.  I guess some of that was because the economy was better around 98-99 than it was in 91-94.

Subject: Re: Didn't 90s teens seem alot older?

Written By: Scott on 02/20/09 at 10:03 pm



I didn't like the way they dressed, they were wearing their hats backwards/to the side and their pants too low. 


It seems like nearly all teens wear their hats that way.  Last week me and my wife went to the movies, and there were lots of teens there, and probably 90% of the ones that had hats wore them to the side.  We sat next to a group of 16-17 year olds, all wearing their hats that way (some forwards to the side and some backwards to the side).  They were immature but they seemed like nice enough kids.  I don't hold the way they dress against them, when I was a teen in the late 80's-early 90's I remember wearing my sweatshirt inside-out, keeping my shoelaces un-tied, and I wore my Swatch watch with the buckle on the top of the wrist.  I was a nice kid, I guess I thought that was cool then, but when I look back it sounds so stupid.

Subject: Re: Didn't 90s teens seem alot older?

Written By: nicole1977 on 02/23/09 at 10:59 pm

I'm a 90s teen also (32 years old), but I wasn't a grunge fan.  I was more of an RnB gangsta rap fan at the time.  It's true.  We did act more mature (except for me of course) but we should didn't look older, thank god.  I remember people saying that I look like I can be in grade school when I was a teenager, WTF? ???

Subject: Re: Didn't 90s teens seem alot older?

Written By: Marty McFly on 02/24/09 at 12:36 am


I'm a 90s teen also (32 years old), but I wasn't a grunge fan.  I was more of an RnB gangsta rap fan at the time.  It's true.  We did act more mature (except for me of course) but we should didn't look older, thank god.  I remember people saying that I look like I can be in grade school when I was a teenager, WTF? ???


Me too! When I was 12 I still got a kids menu at restaurants, people called me a little boy (or mistook me for a girl, lol) and just generally treated me younger. Then again even if I had an older personality, I acted young and probably looked 9.

That had to suck in high school though!

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