Monday, April 16, 2018

Talk to Teen and Know there is a Maze

I met this expressive, brilliant, sensitive, bubbly and beautiful teen kid yesterday. Had a lot of talking time. 'If you are bored with life, catch hold of a child and talk’, is what I used to think. But, the newer version is ‘Talk to a Teen’.

Three plus hours with her and her folks made me wonder….

Lots are being said about…. well a lot of things today. 
  • How to raise smart kids?
  • How to do it yourself?
  • How to find work-life balance?
  • How to enjoy life?
  • How not to eat?
  • How not to live?
  • How not to talk?
  • How to speak to a child?
  • How much is too much in disciplining a child?
  • How to use a specific technology?
  • What is it like to travel to this exotic place?
  • How spirituality is important?
  • How politician is the only cause for virtually any problem in the society?
  • How much is too much of information?
  • How to multiply money?
  • How to become famous?
  • How to be rich and get richer?
  • How to sit? 
  • How to sleep?
  • How to stand?

When there is so much that’s already said, and so much more being written or spoken about as you read this post, and more and more of advice coming up, I just decided to shut off all of these completely and just focus on ‘NOTHING’ in particular.

Looking out the window of a cab that I was seated - soft Tamil music on my phone, twilight evening, Sunday's vehicular traffic - it was a light and nice feel in the head. 

Almost everything faded off my head, but an image of a lone girl child in a palatial house is what kept coming back. I was beginning to get a headache. If your headaches due to a social issue, then it is an indication to be considerate about the issue. Simple. 

I get to work today and get this book: Can I have it all? , a book for successful women. Nice!. I love books and especially the ‘feel-good’ ones.

Thoughts strolled back to the lone girl story I heard from my teen friend yesterday.

The successful women today had parents who worked their best to instil some exceptional qualities and attitudes in their children. On the contrary, do the successful women today work as much in parenting or being a person, to live as a good example to their own little girls?

Upper Middle class and Elite income class children today have everything….

I mean it is easy to agree with this statement if you are a parent or know any parent who earns more than he wants.

In this era of money, pampering, luxury, being busy, technology, and comfort:
  • How to ensure child safety when the mom and dad are working round the clock and the child is in some third party’s care inside the house?
  • How does a child find company when the mom and dad are busy all the time with no time for even each other?
  • How does the child learn to love when the home is just about a palace with no people to call her own?
  • How does the child learn the value of money when every waking hour the child can see and use and over-use the money?
  • How does the child learn to respect elders when they have never been anywhere close to visiting some oldie?
  • How does the child get to know that God or Universe is why we are what we are when there is no heartfelt prayer of gratitude given?
  • How does the child know to care when all that she sees is technology keeping company and not real people??

Sad that these ‘how’ questions still stand tall and fiercely strong in today’s world. Aren’t the children on a lonely planet and struggling to find company and comfort in spite of the myriad of luxuries and opportunities to network today?

It's not to say this whole thing has to do with parents working... I am a 'working mom' myself. Still, it helps to think that the company that our children need when they are in their teen years is much more important than the money and luxury we strive so hard to give them. 

What do the teens want anyway??

Fun. Joy. Attention.Company. Comfort. Acknowledgement.

Why a full-stop after every word?? Its because each of this ' element of importance' is a complete sentence to a teenager at different occasions, in different moods, at different places, with different people,  at different times, overtime and sometimes all on the same day. 

Each teenager wants one of these and resorts to whatever means to get it all. It is up to the parents/teachers/ neighbours/friends to tell them what works and does not and why caution has to be exercised in doing all the ‘so-called’ fun stuff. 

How about parents ensuring that their teen kids get all these from them first before seeking for it all outside?? It is overwhelming to think that it is even possible to give it all as a parent to the kids. 

Maybe in our capacity as a parent, we can just stay aware of the little, yet powerful mind maze that the kids are in and treat them like 'grown-ups' as they may like to be treated, yet quietly watch over their life with friends and society. 

Love them and serve them as much as you would want the world to treat them with respect and love. If every parent does this, the kids will ensure that they treat their counterparts with the same care and love. For all you know, they will stay balanced in fun and frolic.

Something to think about. I am thinking, so just rattled off. 

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