Parenting With An Atmosphere of Grace Series:
Do you ever wonder why the generations are so diverse? Do you hear yourself saying "Those kids today are out of control."
We can only blame ourselves for how our children's generation turns out. What legacy are we leaving behind for the next generation? Here is a a pessimistic view of the current trends left by past and current parents and some advice on how to write the next chapter.
One Baby Boomer Wrote:
"We were probably the first generation that had life easy... comparatively. We didn't have to work on the farm and our country was in the midst of a boom. Our fathers were doing quite well financially, and being the loving parents that they were, they wanted to provide us with the best they could."
"We, as children, took from that, that hard work equals a good life. However, when we raised our own children, Generation X, we took this all a bit further. In a lot of cases, it meant both parents had to work; after all, we are a competitive generation. We, like our parents, wanted the best for our children, but the best meant more, better, and easier.
In our attempt to make life easier for our children, we have ambushed them. We have taught them to take, rather than to give. We have taught them to expect, rather than to work. We have taught them that life is easy, when we know for a fact that it is not. They are headed for a rude awakening, and yes, it is our fault.
We screwed up, and we screwed up royally! The only comfort I can take in this, is that what goes around, comes around. I am sure, should my children decide to have children of their own, that they will be much more strict than our Baby Boomer generation was.
The current thoughts on the children of Generation X called Generation Z here:
"Generation Z is highly connected, many of this generation have had lifelong use of communications and media technologies such as the internet,texting, cell phones, youtube, etc. Generation Z has never known a world that put duty before self, and believes that the needs of the individual should come first. This is not the same thing as being selfish – it is captured, instead, in the phrases we so often hear: "Be yourself," "Believe in yourself," "You must love yourself before you can love someone else."
Some can be described as impatient and instant minded, and tending to lack the ambition of previous generations. Psychologists are claiming an "acquired Attention Deficit Disorder" since their dependency on technology is high and attention span is much lower, as opposed to previous generations who read books and other printed material, along with watching live television. They are also more consumer-oriented than the previous generation, which was focused on technology, retro, and indie culture.
Generation Z are also more individualistic. While members of Generation X and Y are group and team oriented, members of Generation Z are more self directed. Individualism has become more common with Generation Z. Many parents of Generation Z are starting to work part time or become stay-at-home parents so that children are raised by parents and other family members instead of being in a day care facility, which forces children to be in groups. However helicopter parents are becoming more common with children than children of the previous generation. Despite being in a day care facility, many children are placed in many structured extracurricular activities, reducing free playtime.
Parents are becoming more like advisers to this generation. Generation Z teenagers and young adults are not as focused on fitting into certain groups, and more based on fitting in with the general population, and tend to make their own decisions with their parent's advice."
While the jury is still out on the final outcome of Generation Z, the mantra you will hear from Legacy Dad is grace. Moderation, Tolerance, or Grace.
Focus strongly on Morals, Values and Character Development.
Extend grace on grades, sports, dress and generational fads.
The best phrase I once heard was "Don't Major in the Minors."