I'm mostly on a rant here because I don't know what is going on with our youth, especially the kids ages 13-19 (teens). It seems the teens of today have little regard for themselves or their future. They're too worried about the next Drake album, Nicki Minaj's next performance, and texting, texting, and more texting. You can't talk to a teen anymore directly, you must text them.
Many also seem to lack respect in many key areas: towards authority, themselves, their own peers. Teens now get strung out on anti depressants and/or commit suicide instead of dealing with life head on.
Years ago, troubled youth was often a nasty by-product of an absent parent, often the father. Now it is a bevy of reasons. Peer pressure is still relevant and much more intense. Also, its lack of attention at home from either parent. The discipline methods have also failed. When will these professionals realize that timeouts and simple stern looks do not solve every problem. Often a parent or guardian will have to use strict discipline and punishment, preferably corporal punishment.
I also blame the media. Whether it be through these awful reality shows, to celebrity drama in your face 24/7, our youth aren't seeing much positive, enriching material.
Technology is also the blame. Texting, smartphones, tablets, laptops, the web, and of course social networks. Many of these are necessary for our daily lives, but now teens are so drawn into them its hypnotizing. They are no longer or often incapable of being active outside or holding regular, traditional conversations. They are too busy texting, or on a social network such as Facebook or Twitter.
I do my part, especially with my younger cousins. Many of them have these destructive traits. However, I teach and show them alternatives, to keep them well rounded. Reading, writing, the gym, documentaries, even getting involved in their schools and communities. I feel that those activities can still make them positive, productive adults. Sometimes we need to return to what works the best.
Encourage and nurture these troubled teens, they are our future CEOs, presidents, city council officials, teachers, principals, and caretakers. They must know how to handle the real world and not think life is a game of Angry Birds or Words With Friends.
To my friends/readers with grandkids , you think raising their children is rough? Consider the fact that your golden years are in their hands. They will either be the ones taking care of you, or choosing your nursing home.
Now are we ready to be the village again?