18 Traditional Values That Don’t Hold Up in Today’s Society

There are some traditional values that many members of modern society still hold near and dear. For example, it’s hard to argue against courtesy, duty, and family cohesion being noble ideals that remain important today. However, there are also many aspects of older societies that have passed their expiration date. Here are 18 traditional values that don’t hold up in today’s society.

The Gendered Division of Labor

Photo Credit: Virrage Images/Shutterstock.

Not long ago, it was expected that all men should go out and work, while women should stay at home, take care of household chores, and look after their children. This gendered division of labor is outdated and unfair to those who have aspirations outside of these limiting roles.

Marrying Within One’s Race or Religion

Photo Credit: IVY PHOTOS/Shutterstock.

In the past, people who decided to marry outside of their own race or religion were usually looked down upon, shunned, or shamed for their decision. This tradition simply does not live up to the progressive standards of modern society, in which all members of any race and religion should feel free to marry whoever they wish.

The Stigma Attached to Divorce

Photo Credit: LightField Studios/Shutterstock.

As noted by Torrone Law, divorce used to be heavily stigmatized, and those who chose to do so were commonly seen as failures or inferior individuals. This created a toxic environment in which unhappily married couples were reluctant to divorce due to societal stigma, often creating destructive environments for their children.

The Expectation of Having Children

Photo Credit: Dean Drobot/Shutterstock.

Speaking of children, it’s now a well-known fact that not everybody wants or needs them. Yet in the past, it was not a question of whether one would be having children, but an expectation. We think those who want to be child-free should be respected for their decisions in modern society.

Prioritizing a Career Over Personal Life

Photo Credit: G-Stock Studio/Shutterstock.

Baby boomers and older generations are known for their dedication to hard work and stability. While these aren’t necessarily negative traits, they often took this to the extreme, making their careers the priority over all other aspects of their lives. In modern society, we have a better understanding of the importance of work-life balance and relaxation.

Heteronormative Family Structures

Photo Credit: Prostock-studio/Shutterstock.

Mother, father, and child. This was the heteronormative and only acceptable family structure in the past. However, thankfully, society is now becoming more open-minded to the LGBTQ+ community and the fact that anyone, regardless of their gender identity or sexuality, should feel free to couple up with whomever they wish.

Defining Success Through Material Wealth

Photo Credit: Jaroslav Monchak/Shutterstock.

It’s important to create a financially and materially stable life for yourself. But older generations often had the toxic trait of defining success through material wealth alone, neglecting other important aspects of life, such as mental health or happiness.

Conformity to Social Norms

Photo Credit: Shutterstock.

The expectation that everyone should completely conform to societal norms and expectations can be extremely damaging. Unfortunately, this was a common expectation years ago, and still remains a relevant issue for many. We think it’s high time we gave more love to individuality, uniqueness, and self-expression.

Rejection of LGBTQ+ Individuals

Photo Credit: BalkansCat/Shutterstock.

Decades ago, the prevailing view of anyone who strayed from heteronormative ideals was that they were unnatural, mentally ill, and should be shamed or shunned. According to the Human Dignity Trust, there were many laws restricting or punishing those who wanted to marry a member of their own sex. Thankfully, this is a viewpoint that is dying out in modern society.

Obedience to Authority Without Question

Photo Credit: antoniodiaz/Shutterstock.

Obedience and amiability can be positive traits in the right contexts. However, what happens when the person in power is misguided or has negative intentions? We think unquestioning obedience and authority should be left in the past and replaced by critical thinking, individuality, and respect for everyone’s opinions, regardless of their status.

Valuing Silence Over Speaking Out

Photo Credit: VGstockstudio/Shutterstock.

“Children should be seen and not heard” was a harmful phrase often uttered by members of past generations. In today’s society, most of us are aware that everyone’s voice matters and should be heard loud and clear, especially when it comes to speaking out against injustices.

Rigid Career Paths

Photo Credit: Shutterstock.

Career paths felt rather restrictive in times past. In the modern job landscape, there is a wide range of jobs on offer, including remote work, entrepreneurship, and freelancing. This helps a wider range of people find work that suits them and their needs.

Standardized Education as the Sole Path to Success

Photo Credit: BearFotos/Shutterstock.

In the past, all children were expected to take the same standardized path to becoming educated and prepared for their working lives. Nowadays, we are seeing an increase in alternative teaching methods, such as online learning, homeschooling, and vocational training.

The Taboo Around Mental Health

Photo Credit: Shutterstock.

Sadly, for many years, mental health has been dismissed, overlooked, and stigmatized by society. According to Turnbridge, neglecting one’s mental health has been proven to be extremely damaging and can exacerbate existing issues. As such, we’re glad that modern society is beginning to prioritize mental health and well-being.

Traditional Gender Roles in Parenting

Photo Credit: New Africa/Shutterstock.

While women of the past were praised for being mothers and caregivers, fathers who wanted to prioritize looking after their kids over working were deemed lazy, weird, or unmanly. While some still have this backward view, it is thankfully becoming less common in modern society.

Viewing Aging as a Decline

Photo Credit: voronaman/Shutterstock.

Because older generations were so focused on work, duty, and serving those around them, once they became older and less physically able, they had a tendency to feel inadequate and unworthy. Today, we are starting to celebrate aging as a natural part of life and view our older society members as wise, respectable, and important.

Perceptions of Singlehood

Photo Credit: fizkes/Shutterstock.

Not long ago, anyone who either chose to be or involuntarily ended up single would be looked down upon or shamed by society. However, we are increasingly recognizing that there are many valid reasons and benefits to being single.

Homogeneity in Community and Belief Systems

Photo Credit: AlessandroBiascioli/Shutterstock.

It’s a great and healthy thing to be part of a community. However, communities of the past often shamed or shunned those whose beliefs, values, or actions did not align completely with those of the group. This perception holds no place in modern society, which celebrates individuality and diversity.


Photo Credit: Olena-Yakobchuk/Shutterstock.

Baby boomers grew up in a vastly different culture, so they have what younger generations consider strange habits. An internet survey recently asked, “What will die with boomers?” Here are the top 22 answers.

21 Things That Will Be Lost Forever When The Boomer Generation is Gone

18 Common Phrases That Signals Support for Trump

Photo Credit: Steve Sykes/Shutterstock.

Understanding the unique language of politics, particularly among Trump supporters, can provide valuable insights into the nation’s current state. Here’s a deeper look into 17 phrases you’ll likely only hear from this demographic.

18 Common Phrases That Signals Support for Trump

17 Religious Facts People Get Wrong All the Time

Photo Credit: Viorel Sima/Shutterstock.

Religious beliefs and practices are often misunderstood, leading to common misconceptions. Some are just too general, others are downright out there. So, we’ll be correcting 17 widely circulated ‘facts’ about world religions.

17 Religious Facts People Get Wrong All the Time

Why People Aren’t Religious Anymore: 15 Simple Reasons

Photo Credit: Krakenimages.com/Shutterstock.

As society evolves, so does our approach to spirituality. This article looks at the subtle yet profound shift from traditional religious adherence to a more personal, evidence-based belief system.

Why People Aren’t Religious Anymore: 15 Simple Reasons

17 American Attractions That Not Even Americans Want to Visit

Photo Credit: Jihan Nafiaa Zahri/Shutterstock.

The United States of America—land of the free, home of the brave, and the location of some of the most ‘unique’ tourist attractions you’ll ever lay eyes on.

Get ready to chuckle, scratch your head, and maybe even facepalm as we look at 17 American attractions that not even Americans think are worth visiting.

17 American Attractions That Not Even Americans Want to Visit