Friday, January 23, 2015

POINT-OF-VIEW: The Age Gap Issues of Teenagers

Well, teenagers— we tend to be experimental, confused, in search of a role model, be daredevils, cowards, freaks, digging deep to find our who we really are, whatever adjective you may think of that equalizes to trouble-makers.

Any kid who reaches the point of being a teen becomes more aware and conscious about their environment, specifically about themselves. I tend to call this a very emotional era among all the stages of human life, because anything can happen! You experience being a kid and being an adult at the same time. Now that really makes us confused.

The older people confuse us sometimes, they tell us we are too young to do anything fun, experimental, daring and harmful; but we are old enough to do anything boring or fun, safe and right.

There is nothing bad in obeying the elders. As they say, they have been there and done that, so they know what they are talking about, they are guiding us so we avoid ending up in a miserable life. But there are some point that they bully, underestimate, intimidate, discourage or worse, abuse teenagers. Of course, teenagers have the right to stand on their ground, but can be too afraid it will be interpreted as rebellion or talking back to the adults. Of course, threats can affect and traumatize teenagers. Sometimes, teenagers may be tempted too by the adults to do some unacceptable things, due to their influence. Why? Because we grew up in a mindset that adult people know better than us!

We hold nothing against adults, really, just some adults who take advantage of their authority, position or whatever they have that they can use to abuse, belittle, and step on teenagers. We teens love adults who know how to listen, how to have fun, who understands and at the same time, who really care about us.

Teens do not just get problems dealing with the adults, but also with the younger ones or the kids. In this tale, 90% of the “Bad Guy” title always goes to the older ones, of course, the teenagers. Why? It is a simple and redundant explanation that our parents give us— we are the older kids so we know what is right or wrong better than these young rascal siblings of ours. We shouldn’t slap them or beat the hell out  of them, but when these little monsters do that to us, our parents just say that we should just forgive them about it. You know, we always ask, “Where’s justice?”

Actually, I rarely see teenagers hang-out with little kiddos. Most of the teens hang-out with people 5 years older than them and about 2 to 4 years younger than then. I did not use any survey results to fish out this idea from my head, just mere observation. So, the question is… why.

It must be because kids and teens have a very wide gap about their interests. Adults have already surpassed the stage of being a teen, so there are big chances that teenagers can relate themselves more to adults than to kids. Furthermore, teenagers often set a goal to be a better adult, they act like an adult and try to make mature decisions, so who else should they hang out more with but people their age or adults!

But there are some adorable teens who hang out with little kids, mostly their siblings or cousins. These are the kind of teenagers who seems to be not in a hurry to grow up, either matured enough they bond a lot with little kids to babysit them. This teenager-kid friendship is fun and at the same time, troublesome. Little kids do not easily understand teasing and get easily upset when a teenage picks on them. Yes, teenagers can be mean like that to the youngsters but sometimes those teasing are just for fun, just to have some laughs. Can’t these little kids just take a joke? At the same time being in this kind of friendship opens both to discovering happy activities or some new computer game to play together. Competition may be inevitable!

Another trouble between kids and teens is the case of envy or jealousy— whether it is for the attention of the parents, gifts, or who always gets other people’s favor. Well, teens tend to think that everyone should be treated fair, older or not. While kids just don’t bother their selves thinking about that. Oh, the bad kids are too busy being selfish and the good kids are too busy with appreciating what they have and having fun.
Yes, teens do not just have issues against adults or little kids. Sometimes, we come to the point that everybody seems to hate us! Why does one teenager’s mistake affect all of us? One teenage pregnancy and we will suddenly see or hear comments that teenagers nowadays are this and that and blahblahblah. Sometimes I wonder why some cops or security guards always give dirty looks on us teenagers like we just came to the mall to start trouble. People, you are free to voice out your opinion, but do not apply that opinion to all of us. Some teenagers are making their mark on history for excelling in their academics or winning in the Olympics. Some teenagers are earning big being writers, some are bloggers, some are photographers, artists, musicians, singers, inventors… So hold your reins a bit and do not have this impression that teenagers are that bad in general. There are some good guys too.

Besides each one of us makes mistakes. Everyone just keep on putting teenagers on the hot seat because they are easier to control. They are younger, with less authority and power to fend themselves or talk back to the adults. Well, I hope you won’t think this is some rebellious message, but I am just trying to make everybody understand that we teenagers know what is right or wrong, but sometimes, we slip up too. Sometimes, we get confused or curious we forget what is right or wrong. Sometimes, we misinterpret the lessons or advices that our parents give us. Sometimes we face so many problems that we do not know is we should face it like an adult, or like a child. If we are to act like an adult, then we solve it on our own. Then we will be scolded for making the wrong decisions and that we should have consulted an adult’s advice. If we are to act like a child then we’ll come running to our parents and ask them to solve our problems for us. Then we will be scolded for being unable to make up our minds, to decide maturely or for being unable to avoid getting in trouble in the first place. In this stage, we always try to figure out how to show everybody that we are ready to be adults without giving adults the impression that we are being show-offs and disrespectful.

We shouldn’t hurry up being adults, but then, there is a pressure, and of course, that is what everyone expects from us, so how are we able to have some fun? We have fun like kids we start being called immature, we have fun like adults we start being called wild.

And a shout out to all the teenagers out there! We live in a world run by people’s standards— do not live among these, but live with hope, love and peace. With these, you can never go wrong. You will never think of hurting someone else because of love, you will never do anything out of insecurity because you have peace, and you will never stop being kind being in times of trouble, you always have hope in your heart. Do not be afraid to ask your parents. Just soften your approach and keep it respectful when you ask them things or tell them how your day went by. Sometimes, it is not always the adults that should always try to understand, but we should understand the adults too— why they don’t have time for us, why they are so strict… Whenever our parents are unable to help us, you may have reliable people to talk to, some adults like your aunts or uncles, your professor or your friends’ parents. You also have your friends and especially a God to pray your thanks, apologies and fears to.

Find little kids who are not just good enough, but also those who needs your love, care and guidance at an early age. Your little quirks, knowledge and what you learned at school and from the adults can change their lives into something better. Hang-out with the adults who supports you on your way to your dreams, those who will guide you about what  life may have in store for you. Find those adults that will influence you to be a the best adult and citizen you can be; those who understands your flaws and are willing to help you smooth it up.

Do not be afraid to stand your ground when you are being stepped upon. But choose your battles wisely. Every mistake doesn’t take you up to the next higher stair, but it builds a lower stair close to it so that you can climb on the next step easily. So never lose your hopes and don’t give up on your dreams! Always allocate some time for your loved ones, for your heart's desire, for being helpful and for being productive too. You got a lot of good possibilities (and opportunities) ahead of you!

The teenage dilemma seems to be an endless case. I don’t really know how to explain everything that will satisfy both parties— the teenagers and adults. But I always see to it to think positive and that nothing can go wrong if teenagers, kids and adults work together for everyone’s good. The Adults give guidance and care to the teenagers, and bonds and love the little kids; the Teenagers give respect and listens to the Adults, and give guidance and help to the little kids; and the Kids give respect and fun to the Adults and Teens in return for their love, guidance and help. All works together if we do not keep the gap growing, isn’t it? And the gap doesn’t grow when all of us stay close together.

(c) AnamarieSoya
Image Source: Google Images
Video: My Chemical Romance - Teenagers © 2007 WMG

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