Mayhem & Margaritas

Breaking the language barrier-teen slang Communication 101

Teen Slang communication – Let’s take a look into the top 20 slang words of 2021.

Every good therapist will tell you, the key to a strong lasting relationship is communication. This concept isn’t just for couples, it should be applied to your relationship with your children as well. Open dialogue and understanding are the keys to communication success. 

Professionals in this field have built their careers on evidence based research, and applied practice. There are many resources to help build better communication skills. You can seek a qualified therapist or counselor, purchase a self-help book, or even turn to the internet where many professionals have posted their advice for free.

But what happens when there is a language barrier? I’m not talking about the kind of language barrier that Babble can help you learn in 30 days or your money back. I’m talking teen slang language barrier!

Since the dawn of time teens have implemented slang into their language. Most likely to keep us old farts from knowing what they are scheming or maybe it’s just to confuse us so much we just ignore them. Either way we NEED to know, how else can we foil their plans ! 

Me: “Ryan, you look nice today”  

Ryan: tossing his hair back “no cap”.

Me:   “Ummm I know you’re not wearing a hat, I can see that. I said you look nice”

Ryan:  Rolls his eyes and walks away shaking his head. 

Wait! What? I don’t get it. “No cap”?? What in the hell does THAT mean? I spent 80 grand on a private high school education and you can’t speak a fluid sentence that makes sense! Are there warranties or refunds available on that education? Maybe I can at least get a free t-shirt that says “XYZ High School” with “…we tried”, on the back! 

This is happening more and more. More words are flowing out of my kids’ mouths that leave me questioning my brain function. Ok… think… repeat what was said…. use it in a sentence (but not out loud, we don’t need to get laughed at right now) This shouldn’t be this hard to decipher….. Nope! I’ve got nothing!

Pssst- I’m going to let you in on a secret – after bribing several 13-21 year olds with a trip to Chick-fil-A, I broke the code on teen slang and I’m going to give you the top 20 slang words of 2021.

I urge you to learn these terms to be able to understand the secret language your kids are speaking HOWEVER, user discretion is advised. I repeat, USER DISCRETION IS ADVISED!!!! 

Teen Slang Communication 101

1: Cap {noun}

Definition – A lie 

( “that’s bull s*&;” )

2: No cap {noun}

Definition – The truth

( “duh” )

3: Bussin {verb}

Definition – referring to cooking or food / tastes good

(this can also be adapted into almost anything your kid thinks is really good. But enjoy this one if your kid says your dinner was “bussin”)

4: Yeet {adjective}

Definition- Accentuating excitement often in sports

(Throwing up that 3 pointer….YEET. Hail Mary pass…YEET)

5: AF {acronym}

Definition – As F*&%

(the most useful of all terms ever)

6: Gucci {adjective}

Definition – very fancy, good, excellent, fashionable

(When you hear this don’t worry, your kid didn’t just spend his college fund on a belt, they are referring to an item at the highest level)

7: Banger {noun}

Definition – a great song

(this pretty much describes any jam you rock out to)

8: Shook {verb}

Definition – to be overwhelming surprised or shocked by something usually in an impressed way

9: Sus {adjective}

Definition – referring to something suspicious/shady/questionable

(This word is clearly because most teenagers find it daunting to have to type more than 3 letters…IDK)

10: Darty {noun}

Definition – daytime outdoor party

(this is what college kids live for when the weather is good)

11: Narty {noun}

Definition – nighttime outdoor party

(this is the nighttime version of what college kids live for. See above)

12: Lit {adjective}

Definition – describing something that is excellent

(Also can be used to replace the word “drunk”. You may need to use context clues to determine which version is being used)

13: Good looks {adjective}

Definition – “Thank you” in reference to something that may have been overlooked

14: Bruh {noun}

Definition – a shorter word for brother. Most often used as a casual way of referring to a friend

(consider this a term of endearment when directed at you by your teen)

15: Low Key {adjective}

Definition – describing something on the down low or done secretly

16: Ghost {verb}

Definition – stopping communication without warning

(most likely what will happen to you if you start using these words)

17: Fire {adjective}

Definition – describing something or someone super attractive

18: Left me on read {verb/adverb}

Definition – when a recipient of a message sees it and doesn’t respond. Or the feeling of being ignored

(9/10 times what happens when you send your teen a text)

19: Open/OC {noun}

Definition – open crib or open house

(No this is not a real estate term. This is referring to when the parents are away and party place)

20: Woke {adjective}

Definition – this is a very trendy word to express social awareness

Now, to be clear, I find great satisfaction in irritating my children from time to time. I will purposely attempt to use their lingo when I deem it appropriate: ie finding a way to get them to clear the room so I can have 2 freaking seconds of silence. Oftentimes I will methodically butcher the term because nothing says parental success like an embarrassed teen walking away saying “No….Nooo….O.M.G!!!! You’re so cringy”  SCORE!!! Mom gets the room to herself!! 

Oh, make that 21 words…..

21: Cringy {adjective}

Definition- how your child feels when you’ve outsmarted their language game!

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