When I meet people whose kids are younger than mine and tell them I have a teenager, they sometimes react with feigned terror, “wow you’re brave!” or sometimes I see tweets or status updates that read, “not looking forward to when my kids become teens” or comment about passing by a group of “hoodlum teens” loitering at the corner store.
I find this funny. Don’t these people remember being teenagers?
If you take the time to get to know some, you’ll see that teenagers are just people. People who haven’t been around as long as we have, but people just like us in every other way.
My daughter and her friends are funny, feisty, independent, smart, opinionated, passionate, and kind. They challenge each other to think of things in different ways, they protect one another, they love each other, they socialize, they play games, they celebrate each others’ accomplishments, they provide unwavering support and help boost each other up when feeling down.
I’m so curious to find out what these young people are going to grow up to do in life. I imagine future activists, athletes, social workers, business people, teachers, coaches and police.
In the meantime, I want them to have parties with their red cups and ping-pong balls, loiter at the dairy queen, and enjoy their youth.