One of the saddest things that is now normalized and revered in our society right now is demonising how our young people are developing emotionally and navigating the world. It makes me angry because on one hand we are promoting evolution and becoming better people and on the other, when our young people show emotional maturity, they are ridiculed. How can they win exactly? And maybe those who continuously put our precious youth down, need to take a good hard look at their own emotional immaturity?
Lots of us grew up in what we now understand to be dysfunctional homes. Many well meaning parents believed comparison and ridicule was the way to get their children to do what they want. Many of us come from generations of dysfunction which lead through fear and physical punishment. There was not the same understanding as there is now, that this damages children’s sense of trust in us as parents. In turn the world becomes unsafe and their sense of self worth is squashed.
What I hear when I see someone proclaiming that our up and coming generation of adults are “snowflakes” is intense deep pain. I hear someone who has been raised to feel threatened and ashamed of their very existence. The “man up” approach to life is deeply ingrained and to become aware and attached to emotion of any kind is seen as weakness.
Do we understand how the mixed message of saying I love you to our children and grandchildren and then to ridicule all that they are makes us to appear to them?
It does not afford us respect from them as we would hope. Because our children and grandchildren are evolved and are growing up with concepts alien to us, it makes us appear weak and ignorant. This attitude to new ideas and thinking happens in all walks of life – including the recovery community. The rate of drug use and drinking in our young people is declining. The young people that are around me certainly look after themselves to a far greater degree than my generation ever did. There is no “one way” or the “only way.” There are many ways to live and exist and it might just do us older generations some good, to listen and converse with people who have different ideas.
The scary thing, for those of us who care, is that the next evolved generation, can read us like wide open books with huge lettering! It’s that easy for them. Our sarcasm and belittling of their way of being screams that we are afraid, that we do not understand ourselves and that we definitely do not understand them. Many of the younger generation are left to figure out the world completely alone because so many of the older generations are so out of touch with our own inner selves and our own flaws.
I would argue that the so called “snowflakes” live inside ourselves and our own insecurity. Weakness happens when we do not know or understand ourselves fully. If we cannot look in awe and wonder at how the new humans navigate the world what’s the point of carrying on humanity? Why are we so adamant about keeping things as they “always were.” My own children have taught me a lot about my flawed thinking and misunderstanding of life. Learning from them has made me a better person and embracing them instead of shaming them makes them better. We need to leave our young people alone to fix the shitshow we have created on this planet. Immediately!
Author In The Rooms Member