Is this a time to say, "It's not my kid?"
Though venting their displeasure regarding parental rules and restrictions is nothing new for tweens and teens, the current generation isn’t limited to bashing their parents to one friend at a time over the telephone; now, they can air their grievances in one of the world’s most public forums: Twitter.
Here are ten of the terrible things tweens have been saying for generations, but now say with a hashtag to emphasize their point.
- “It’s Not Fair!” – The battle cry of older kids for decades can now be shouted from the rooftops; it’s less than one hundred and forty characters, and allows plenty of room for creative hashtagging.
- Physical Insults – Kids often speak without thinking in the heat of indignation; once upon a time, the hurtful insults about their parents’ physical appearances were limited to a few sets of ears. Now, anyone with access to a Twitter feed can see exactly what a tween finds disagreeable about their parents’ appearance.
- “It’s My Life!” – Often used in tandem with the old faithful “it’s not fair,” kids that are just starting to assert their independence love to claim that they are, in fact, the masters of their own lives. Also like “it’s not fair,” “it’s my life” is short enough to leave room for heavy-hitting hashtags.
- Airing Sensitive and Private Information – Kids that are angry or hurt will lash out in any way possible; often, this means sharing personal and potentially humiliating information. Before the days of social networking, the scope was limited to those that could physically hear a tween’s angry shouts.
- “I Hate My Parents!” – Few phrases strike a parent to the heart like “I hate you.” Unfortunately, most kids will utter those dreaded words at some point, and today’s kids can also drive the point home with an angry tweet.
- “You’re Not Even My Real Mom!” – When disputes erupt in blended families, an angry tween’s go-to response is “you’re not even my real parent!” When these statements find their way to social networking sites, it can create even more distance in an already shaky relationship.
- “My Parents Are So Stupid!” – Mark Twain famously said, “When I was a boy of fourteen, my father was so ignorant I could hardly stand to have the old man around. But when I got to be twenty-one, I was astonished by how much he’d learned in seven years.” This age-old sentiment has been on the lips of kids for decades; now it’s on their Twitter feeds as well.
- Using Foul Language to Drive the Point Home – Rebellious kids will often resort to profanity in an attempt to underscore their frustration and to elicit a response from parents. When they do so in a forum as public as Twitter, the humiliation a parent feels in this situation is increased exponentially.
- “My Parents are Too Old to Understand!” – The young always feel that their parents are out of touch with modern ways of thinking; this sentiment is both tweeted and the belief in it exhibited by a tween thinking that their parents are too out of touch to operate Twitter in order to find their comments.
- Name Calling – When kids resort to publicly calling their parents rude or profane names, it’s both a bid for acceptance from their peers and a way of exhibiting how “adult” they are. Twitter offers tweens not only a venue for airing their thoughts, but a platform for their peers to encourage their poor behavior.
Join me on Facebook and follow me on Twitter for more information and educational articles on parenting today's teenagers.