Nickelodeon Syndrome: Why So Many Millennials are Neurotic

There’s no ignoring that the Millennial generation is in crisis. Just take a look at their skyrocketing incidence of depression.



While most Americans are feeling more depressed, we’ve seen the sharpest increase among those who were aged 16-25 as of 2017.

Those ages encompass the birth years 1992-2001, which is an almost perfect match for the generational reckoning favored at this blog.

It’s probably not an accident that the first spike in depression figures came in 2013-2014, when the average Millennial was leaving adolescence. After all, that cohort was raised by television – and then the internet – to believe they could achieve any dream they set their hearts on. And what’s more, they deserved to.


What Millennials found instead when they entered the real world was that they had the same personal limitations as every prior generation – if not more.


The resulting difficulty with adapting to adult life due to a steady diet of “You can be anything you want!” marketing is what I call Nickelodeon syndrome.



Check out any post-Ground Zero (which also coincides with Millennials’ formative years) kids’ show, and you’ll notice a steady and unsubtle drum beat of “Kids are savvier and more imaginative than adults. Your mom and dad work dull 9-5 jobs because they lack ambition, but you can be a movie star/rock god/millionaire!”


This is of course a vicious and cruel lie to tell children, because vanishingly few people have the talent and resources to realize all of their ambitions as they envision them.


Equality – another evil concept peddled to children – does not exist in any measurable form among individuals. Someone who’s 5′ 4″ is not going to excel in the NBA. If your IQ is 89, you will not be founding a successful tech startup.


Diversity is real, though not in the warped sense the Death Cult intends. There is a hierarchy of being in which every on the spectrum of ability is filled. This full expression of possibilities inherent in the human condition honors God and man.


The serious mental and larger societal problems we’re seeing stem from denying the natural order. And worse, going against it. A generation is coming to grips with the fact that most of them cannot be full-time game streamers or glass ceiling-shattering female CEOs like their cartoons promised.


These internal contradictions have rendered a disturbing number of Millennials severely neurotic. Ven. Fulton Sheen compared neurosis to squeezing a tube of toothpaste with the cap still screwed on. The contents could burst out anywhere. Some medicate in various ways to deal with the pressure. Others let it erupt into frenzied attacks on the world they feel betrayed them. That is a root of campus and shitlibopolis havoc we’ve seen these recent years. Note that Millennial depression took another dramatic upturn in 2016.


The cure for Nickelodeon syndrome is a healthy dose of humility – the virtue by which one makes an accurate assessment of his ability and submits to the cosmic order accordingly. The surest and fastest way to grow in virtue is to petition God for it. But since Millennials have been taught they don’t need God since they’re Him, few are taking this route.


What’s clear is that generations X and Y are being passed over for leadership so Boomers can hand the reins over to their Millennial clones. The tragic spectacle of foreign policymakers taking cues from Reddit suggests that the handover is already in progress.


If you thought that rule by demented fossils was bad, just wait until the self-entitled neurotics who can’t boil water or change a tire take charge.



For a vision almost as scary, read my hit horror-adventure novel.



Originally published here.

Brian Niemeier

Brian Niemeier is a best selling science fiction author and a John W. Campbell Award for Best New Writer finalist. His second book, Souldancer, won the first ever Dragon Award for Best Horror Novel., and its sequel, The Secret Kings, became a 2017 Dragon Award finalist for Best Science Fiction Novel. He's currently crowdfunding his latest work Combat Frame XSeed: CY 40 Second Coming on Indiegogo. Read more of his work at or pick up his books via Amazon.