As a child growing up, I relished the thoughts of the end of the school week, preparing for the festivities of the weekend. Whether it was hanging out with friends and partying or having fun with family, the anticipation of the moments of "FUN" is what drove all children through the days. Looking back on the type of FUN that youth of my generation had, I noticed that there are some similarities as well as some glaring differences.
Before I talk about the differences I want to reference the words of our parents when we whined and fussed about having fun in our day. Their words of wisdom were always in the area of how reckless our fun was and how much more responsible their fun was. Of course we didn't listen because, hey, parents just didn't understand, right? Now looking at our children seemingly throwing their lives away at the expense of some "FUN" rings those same words of wisdom within our heads.
Similarly, our children and us were expressing their new found awareness of self in the type of fun we engaged in. We also were seeking forms of freedom based on what types of environments we were and are exposed to. Some of the fun is based purely on PEER PRESSURE, what all your friends, buddies, partners, etc. are engaged in at the moment. Others of us found our fun in the simple pleasures like hanging out with a few friends in the neighborhood "getting into stuff". Still others of us weren't very social and didn't "hang out" at all but were okay with being by ourselves, exploring the world around us alone. Occasionally, these types of "fun" seekers would be joined by another "kindred spirit" and lifelong friendships would be forged. All in all, we two generations, in our glaring differences, still are somewhat the same.
We also in our similarities, would both get the thumbs down from our parents and your grandparents...lol
Now for the differences. Watching the youth through the many avenues that technology has "blessed" us with nowadays, we are privileged to see some very strange and shocking behavior carried out by this newest generation all in the name of FUN. We see a more aggressive, less reserved and somewhat uncaring generation of our youth engaged in very violent acts, lewd expressiveness and general nonsenseness that is shocking even to our "rebellious" eyes.
If someone in the age range of the adults of today were to attend a party for a group of teenagers, we would probably be shocked and appalled at the things that took place. The most amazing thing, however, would be how the teenagers would support it all in the name of "FUN".
The Kids are TOO KRUNK!
What we have found out through basic human observation is that the environment plays a dominant role in how a person is going to turn out in life. Genetics play a big role as well but can in many cases be suppressed for generations until they manifest violently almost similar to the reaction one can get from mixing two caustic liquids together. What this means is that if our parents, who may have been born between 1925 and 1955, were exposed to the racism, oppression and lack of resources of their day and turned out the way they did, it explains why those born between 1956 and 1979 turned out the way we did. After the 70s the environments that we lived in began to make some aggressive and unexpected changes for the worst.
The communities that we were raised in changed, the type of entertainment that we celebrated began to change, our views both socially, politically and consciously began to change, our educational environments began to change, the food we ate changed, the way we interacted with each other changed and in addition to that, our general Human spirituality changed. We wanted a better place for our future generations but allowed the responsibility for established that place to be taken out of our hands.
So now, our children weren't being raised by us anymore, the television was raising our children, the public schools were raising our children, daycares and after school programs were raising our children, music, videos and movies were raising our children, etc. After these things happened what we found out was that a new generation of parents were coming up who didn't know how to be mothers and fathers, only moms and dads.
A mom can birth a baby but needs the hospital to keep it healthy, needs a daycare to care for it, needs the schools to educate it, needs the police to discipline it, needs the boy scouts or girl scouts to teach it values and principles, needs the military to teach it respect, needs the church, temple or masjid to teach it spirituality while she chases her lost dreams. This is not a MOTHER.
A dad can plant the seed for a child but doesn't feel the need to be present in the child's life until they themselves have been through so many hardships that they just don't want the child to go through what they go through, usually too late to make a true difference in the child's life. This is not a FATHER.
So now back to the children and their FUN.
If they have been educated about FUN from peers, television, movies, music, computers, etc. and little or none of that education came from their parents, their community or their grandparents, it is probable to think that we as parents nowadays would turn our noses up at their fun as well.
But there is a solution...