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7 'deadly sins' that got millennial kids punished but GenZ & Alphas cannot relate

African mums were known for instilling discipline like no other back in the day, and millennials lived to tell about it.

Father and son relaxing on a sofa (Photo: August de Richelieu)

All it took was one glance and African mums could sniff out any sins you committed when they weren’t around.

It did not matter whether it was a misdemeanor, someone got hurt or your mum just suspected you had done something wrong, big and small mistakes all attracted the same degree of punishment.

If it had been your sibling who did something wrong, you were also punished for it because what were you doing as they erred? You must have been an accomplice was their reasoning.

GenZers and Alphas, who basically enter an agreement with their folks on how they will be parented, may not relate with any of these but here are some funny crimes that got millennials punished.


Blame it on traps laid by the devil because immediately your were sent to the shop, that’s when you found your friends playing hide and seek or football.

You would memorize everything you needed but a few minutes into the game, all the details would get messy and you wouldn’t remember if you were sent 1kg of matchbox or 2 sugars.

And your chances were better if you just got the wrong things and forget the change than go back and ask about what you had been sent.


If there was something, mums hated back in the day was children licking sugar and trying to lie about it. And they didn’t warn you against it.

They simply left it somewhere accessible and in a sarcastic tone encouraged you to eat all the sugar with the more sinister caveat that 'your parents are rich, we'll just buy more'.

If you were smart enough you would recognize the expert entrapment and stay as far from the sugar as possible, because if you dared, they'd unleashed war and terror.

The possibility of inflicting injuries on you was no deterrent for parents of millennials. In fact, they threatened to beat you until the neighbours came to rescue you and ferry you to the hospital in a wheelchair.


GenX parents wanted the perfect children who would come from school, do their homework, wash their dirty uniform, eat, do the dishes, clean the house and sleep.

They didn’t entertain children who wanted to watch cartoons or any movies. As a matter of fact, some would place their hands on the TV to check if it was warm because that would mean it had been on for a while.

TVs were for watching the news from state broadcasters and only the man of the house could hold the remote and decide what everyone watched.

As if they all went to the same school, parents of millennials treated it as a crime if you accepted food offered at the neighbor's house and ate it.


You were better off licking all the sugar and watching TV than eating at the neighbour's house.

Sometimes, millennials were asked to pack their belongings (if they had any because everything including their own lives was the property of their parents) and go live with the neighbour since they seemed to cook better or take care of them more than their own mother.

If you asked for food, your mum would tell you to ask from the neighbour's where you had eaten, since she had now become your new mum.

It was a crime to play in the rain. It’s either you played in the rain when your mum wasn’t around and washed the clothes or didn’t play at all because if they found out, they would beat you thoroughly.


They didn't clarify if their worry was the fear of you getting sick and that scared them or if it’s because they didn’t want to wash the mud-stained clothes afterward.

Not only was playing in the rain a crime but playing in general. It’s as if parents never wanted to see their children having fun.

If you got hungry during the night, the expectation was starving to death but never touching anything that had been prepared, bought, or set aside for breakfast the next morning.

If you dared, you would go attend school the next day with bumps and bruises. Only millennials got punished for being hungry as if it’s not a natural thing.


Zoomers and Alpha's have no idea how valuable the crockery that was kept on the highest shelf was. African mums would even repeatedly remind you that some of it cost more than you.

These fine China were only brought out if the in-laws came around or if the pastor and church elders happened to pass by.

The only role millennials had was wiping them gently before the guests arrived and cleaning them later and you had to have attained a certain age to be trusted.

Accidents and mistakes don’t exist in mom’s dictionaries. Breaking these dishes was illegal, punishable by severe beating, threats, and a promise of replacing them in the future. Things were not allowed to slip from your hands, you had to be very careful all the time.


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