As a parent of children from inter racial marriage or being as a migrant, our experiences and attitudes differ significantly from those of our children who grow up in another country and culture.
When our teenage children seek out their own identity, develop new values from ours, seek independence, we strongly feel the differences in their notion of freedom, technological advancement, music, slang and body languages, dress code and cultural issues. Many children rely on personal technological devices to define themselves, create social circles outside the family contributing to rapid communication changes.
Having mixed blood children means a combination of two or more strong characters of both parents. There are times that their strong will can challenge with hard impact our differences in values, education, behavior, customs and attitudes we embraced when we were young.
If you have noticed, the modern generation and cultural gaps are directly proportional to the fast cultural changes when it comes to fashion, tastes, trends, politics, events, technology consumerism and fast emerging text slang languages for many tech savvy. What we need to do is flexibly catch up and learn to go with the flow of cultural evolution without losing our own values and identity.
Then comes some situation challenging us on how we face the social mania, causing some moral anxiety, our thriving for intergenerational equity and respect on children, youth, adults and seniors and challenging times dealing with our children sometimes in difficult situations that can hurt us and what lies breathing behind is practically cultural and generation gap.
Some familiar circumstances raising family conflicts are:
- when children are not allowed to stay out late,
- when parents interfere with their choice of friends,
- imposing of clothes to wear and many other “don’ts”
- frequent yelling to let one’s stand to be heard
- when children breaks the border of family rules agreed upon
- when lies and disrespect grow out of hand.
From my personal experience, it is best to encourage our growing children to be open to us. Being an excessive disciplinarian can backfire to negative reactions from children as they may turn to be insecure, secretive and grow hatred.
Learn to be in tune with the emotions hidden in their body languages. Set house rules and consequences if they broke family rules then you can remove internet connection or sequester their gadgets until they apologize and reform their attitude. For example: if teens arrive home fifteen minutes late at your evening-out rule, then take off one day of internet or gadget. They can get back the internet access at home or any gadget if they cook a meal or clean toilet or help you in doing chores. Giving them tasks is a way to learn what responsibility and commitment mean. Teaching them on wise handling of money and self-reliant attitude is a must.
Update ourself with net lingo terms www.netlingo.com if not you’ll be in abstract perplexed mode deciphering their codified conversations like 5FS, 404, AFPOE, YODO, YOLO, ALOTBSOL, DDG acronyms.
Share our culture let them understand the differences in traditions, economic situations and values we want them to embrace and on our part with a flexible acceptance of their modern generation’s trends.
On conflicting spiritual and moral views, bridge gap with honest, open communication respecting each other’s age, feelings and views. Encourage our growing children to embrace the positive strong qualities, values and character of both culture: ours and the culture they are living now with strong emphasis on respect, flexibility, honesty, self-discipline, compassion and understanding.
Despite our age and cultural gaps, as parents of our modern children, we can still thrive together with beautiful mind, an understanding heart and upright soul to bridge these gaps.