The Truth Is Most Millennials Don't Want Those Family Heirlooms And Trinkets

It's your resident elder millennial here, back at it again with the hot takes.

In today's edition of "millennials do things differently and that's okay," we have the complicated issue of heirlooms, antiques, and hand-me-downs. What are we meant to do with them, and do we even want them?

(No, we kind of don't.)

I have an odd relationship with the concept of family heirlooms and trinkets.

Unsplash | Jazmin Quaynor

My whole life, I've been shown something by a family member and told it's "mine" when they're gone.

Whether it's antique jewelry, furniture, or even a glass egg collection (yes, my Nana has one of those), I've always been told and shown the things that will eventually be mine when the people I love are dead.

That doesn't bring me the kind of comfort that I truly believe the people telling me intended it to.

In fact, I hate the idea of inheriting something.

Unsplash | Christelle BOURGEOIS

Like most millennials, I know how fleeting things are. Coming of age during 9/11, the Iraq War, and the 2008 recession massively shifted most millennials' values. We learned not to hang onto material things that could disappear in a moment's notice.

Put simply: I don't care about stuff. I don't care about the paintings, or the furniture, or the jewelry.

I only care about the people.

So you can imagine how I feel about dealing with the things left behind.

Unsplash | photo nic

Every once in a while, my beloved Pop — my 89 year-old grandfather — points out little things in his house he'd like me to have. And while it touches me greatly that he would think of me like that, it makes me sad.

I'd rather have my Pop than have any of his stuff. I'd rather hang out with him and have him ask me adorably well-meaning questions about being LGTBQ+. I don't want the paintings. I want him.

And when he's gone, I'm going to have SO many glass eggs on my hands.

Unsplash | Weronika Krztoń

What will I — a millennial with roommates — do with a collection of glass eggs? Yes, they were my Nana's, and yes, she liked them, but...guys, they're weird glass eggs, and she only collected them because her dad told her collecting something is important. So she chose...eggs?

I'd rather donate the things I have no use for so that they can become someone else's treasured object, rather than something I quite frankly have no room for in my apartment.

I'd rather someone get use and happiness out of heirlooms, rather than me keeping them out of an obligation.

Unsplash | Aly Ko

Someone else can add to their weird glass egg collection, and I think that's beautiful.