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Sunday, February 3, 2008

Fathers and Teenage Sons

The generation gap is getting narrower as time passes by. This has come to a realization for myself because we are a closely knit family in our country. The influences of technology, society and education has a lot to do with this. When I was a teen-ager from the late 1960s to the early or mid-1970s, we enrolled in schools on our own and got report cards from school. We did not have those PTAs or PTACs. We were trusted by our parents on those things and knew they were part of our responsibilities. I would say, my teen years were the years when drug addiction came to the forefront. In a family of 10, I definitely had problems! My father had a heart condition that prevented him from being employed regularly, even if he was a Civil and Mining engineer at the same time. There were four of us last siblings still going to school. I was the only son going to school with three sisters.

From that time, with the number of nephews and nieces we had, I had observed that one year to next for them was not so different. Talking about the 1970s and 1980s. What one had gone through in a year or more during those days didn't vary much on generation gap. They had the same education, leisures and pleasures in life. The 1990s had a different story to tell. Technology was advancing so fast that aging of of children could not cope as fast. To cut the long story short, we had sophisticated calculators, cellphones and computers emerging on those years. The late 90s were the teen years of my eldest son, now to be 25 years old, by March 2008. It was completely different during my days! We were brought up differently during our teen years, so I had to accept changes. Right now, I have my youngest son in his teen years and experiencing differently from that of his older brother and that of mine. I have accepted the changes in in generation gaps and I am glad that my youngest son finds a good reason to come home early and stay at home when not in school. Of course, there are still those binges when a friend or school mates go out on some week ends. I perceive that as normal and natural.

Sex which is a delicate issue, is something I never brought up with them. Taking away influences that they could prematurely think of it, I still believe that what nature has to offer comes along naturally. As long as they have the family and the diversions not to think about sex, it is alright with me. Maybe fathers should realize, whether they've been bad or good in their teens years, things change in a way it is sometimes difficult to accept.

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