Do teenagers live in an age of entitlement?
Straight talking from a judge to teens regarding their constant cries for more.
Most children in Western society seem to have an inflated sense of entitlement, and parents often encourage this behaviour. We even reward it. Most of the time we are just giving in to societal norms, following the pack mentality, and are so time poor that we give in easily to what at first glance are seemingly harmless requests that keep our teenagers happy, busy, and out of our way. We can then do the things we must to survive. Work, home, health, relationships. I know, lazy parenting.
Is the article too harsh? I don’t think so. It’s confronting, direct, but eye-opening.
It’s hard to hear that our kids may be taking advantage of us. It’s even harder to realise that as a parent, I have often resorted to behaviour that has encouraged my childs sense of entitlement.
Perhaps there’s much more to be said for an ‘old school’ approach to steering our teenage kids in the ‘right’ direction. I don’t doubt it would be difficult – to make a self-obsessed teenager that has grown up thinking life is easy and just provides them with whatever they desire, whenever.
I’m not saying my boy is that far gone. He’s experienced and learned from plenty of painful life lessons in his short time on Earth. He rarely pesters me with demands after I have said a firm ‘no’ or a ‘maybe’ instead of an instant ‘yes’, but I can see that he could, and given a slightly different upbringing would be very demanding.
I’ve seen many of his friends arrogantly expecting rather than eagerly anticipating.
I think the article contains a wonderful message, to teenagers AND their parents, carers, mentors and teachers. I’ll be showing this to my son. I imagine it’ll be shown several times before it’s understood. Then he’d need encouragement and help in organising any of the alternate activities suggested. He’d need to cope with the reactions of his peers, which is so very important to most teens.
Or is that just me hovering overhead, ensuring that my boy is safe and happy. Would this see me intervening to make his life easier, when one of the aims here is to have my teenager attempt self-fulfilment instead of self-entitlement?
Expectations of instant gratification drive much adult behaviour. Is it any wonder our kids feel a sense of entitlement?
Mum and Dad as role models show them the way.
What are your thoughts on this article - agree or not? Do you think teenagers would benefit from an environment where the pursuit of 'fun' was replaced the pursuit of 'achievement' or 'giving'?