Thursday, 29 March 2012

Teen-Parent Conflict

When Teens, Parents ClashTeenagers and their parents have conflicts but how these conflicts are managed is critical. If these conflicts are not managed constructively, families divide, behaviour and relationships degrade and criminal conduct may follow. The turn of the century saw a lot of change, not only in technology but also in relations between parents and young people. Over exposure to the media has been blamed for the incredibly souring relations between the two camps. This problem is being faced worldwide .It is now a great challenge for the parents in this current generation to raise their teenage sons and daughters without disagreeing as far as decision-making is concerned.The teenagers’ desires in life differ from their parents’. The fact that parents are their major if not only funders, the teenagers’ hands remain tied as they dance to their parents’ tunes.The old age is wisdom theory has overshadowed the reality and need for teens to build their own lives. protective:The parents also do not want their teens to make exactly the same mistakes they made in life. They want them to be their own shadow.Teenagers view their parents as local (old fashioned) and not of this dot com (modern) generation especially those whose parents are illiterate. They tend to think that their parents do not know what is on vogue and should let them decide on what to do with their lives. This form of thinking among the teens arises especially due to peer influence.Some parents disagree with their teenagers because they are very protective. The world is changing drastically and they do not want their teenage children to be taken by the wind to anchor in the wrong harbour of life. On the other hand, some parents are always deceived by their teenagers. The teens at times lie to their parents that they are at school and yet they are busy having fun in the clubs and many places. Parents who go through such an experience do not trust their teens to make right choices for themselves.Influence from the western world scare the parents and at times scares them from allowing their teenagers to make certain choices in life. They fear that this influence will erode the morals and conduct which they have imparted in their teenagers. The parents therefore fear that their teens might become spoilt if given a chance to go abroad. This is because of the moral degeneration in the western world.Nathan Byamugisha, says he acquired a scholarship to pursue computer engineering in India but the fact that his parents do not want him to leave the country kills him inside. He says his parents cannot trust him to be away on his own in a foreign country. He also says he acquired the scholarship without his parents’ support and deems their decision very unfair to him. He still hopes that they will change their minds and let him do what he desires. Resolving the differences The solutions to the teen-parent conflicts should involve initiatives from both the parent and the teen. Ms Rugumayo says that the parents should ensure that they develop healthy relationships with their teenagers right from childhood such that they take their parents to be their best friends. This enables the two parties to agree with each other.The parents should be free with their teenage sons and daughters and vice versa. The teenagers will therefore open up to their parents and the two will arrive at the best decision.Parents should also be flexible and support their teenagers’ decisions especially whenthey are of great importance to their lives.  Teenagers and their parents have conflicts but how these conflicts are managed is critical. If these conflicts are not managed constructively, families divide, behaviour and relationships degrade and criminal conduct may follow. Mr Nicholas Ssubi, a teacher, says he did agree with his daughter’s decision to study what she wanted at high school. He says he was scared because many teenagers by then especially girls were failing the same combination. After a long period with his daughter, he was convinced and fortunately, his daughter excelled and got government sponsorship to the university. Where possible, if such conflicts persist in a family, a family counsellor should be an option to consider. In a nutshell, teen-parent conflicts are always bound to happen but what matters most is the way of handling such issues so as to maintain a harmonious relationship between the parents and their teenagers.

Frustrated teens: In most cases when a teenager tries to put a point across, the parent does not want to consider it as long as he or she has an alternative point, which is thought to be better than that of the teen even if it does not apply in the teen’s life.The parents always think that they know what is best for their teenagers which are to a certain extent true and good. But the fact is that sometimes they do not want to admit that they are wrong about certain things and do not get the point straight.Probuse Nimukama, a senior six leaver who scored 23 points in PEM/Art says that he wants to pursue a diploma in electrical engineering so as to gain more practical skills before proceeding to pursue a degree course. His father does not support his decision. He claims that diploma courses are meant for the poor who cannot afford to pay for university education. This teenager is very bitter about what his father says but he has no other alternative but to go along with his fathers’ wishes.Ms Alimpa A. Rugumayo, a family counsellor, says the major cause of the teen-parent conflicts is the fact that most parents want to live their lives through their teenagers.

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