teen behavior

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daria7483

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I've had a couple of rather bad run-ins with teens lately, and honestly, I'm baffled. I'm trying to figure out if what I've witnessed is typical of teens, if they will grow out of it and become nice, productive people with social skills, and if the teens on here who generally seem so intelligent and well-spoken on these threads are really like this in real life, and why there's such a difference.

So the first incident was last weekend. I went home for Easter, and on Saturday my mom and I went ice-skating at the local rink, something we used to do when I was a kid and that I really enjoy. For the first couple of hours, everything was fine. There was a group of teens there and occasionally one of them would do something annoying/stupid but nothing that was any big deal.

However, towards the end of the public session, the rink monitor who was keeping an eye on things on the ice decided to wander off since there weren't that many people left, and pretty soon these teens got really rowdy, mostly doing stuff like scooping up the ice and throwing it at each other and scraping their skates down in the ice to make more snow to throw around. Which is a big no-no - the Zamboni can't fill those holes, and it creates tripping hazards for other skaters. But other than that, it wasn't that they were doing anything horrible or dangerous. It was just annoying and immature and disruptive to the rest of us who were still trying to skate. But I didn't want to seem like the uptight asshole-ish adult who can't have any fun, so I didn't say anything.

The second incident was more unsettling, I think. I was asked at work to organize a field trip for a group of high school students interested in a particular career field that I work in. They were going to come to my organization and spend a couple of hours getting a tour and hearing from people who did what they wanted to do. So, this was scheduled for yesterday, and the students came. I was warned that these kids were not advanced students and that there might be some minor behavior issues.

But what I witnessed wasn't exactly a behavior issue like talking out of turn - it was just apathy and boredom. Even though these kids were hearing from people and seeing things related to what they supposedly want to do when they finish school, they had blank expressions on their faces the whole time. The only question they asked was "do you guys have any vending machines in this building?" When the people talking to them would make a joke, they'd just stare back. It was a really awkward experience and frustrating for me, because I had spent a lot of time planning this trip, and the people talking to the kids and showing them around were people who had taken time out of their day and really made an effort to give these kids a cool experience. And what they were saying and showing everyone was interesting. I don't know how it could've been more interesting. But these kids just were not into it at all. I got the impression that they were not very intelligent and had no social skills on top of it. There's another group coming next week, and I'm not looking forward to it at all.

So, what I'm wondering is, is what I witnessed typical of teens? Is this just how they are? Do you guys think that teens in general can and do outgrow this kind of behavior? Do those of you who are teens think that this behavior is fine, and I should get over myself? Is there a way for teachers and other adults to get through to teens and not receive a blank stare in response?

Because I know it's only been a few years since I was a teen, but honestly I don't ever remember acting like this. I feel like I came out of the womb with more social skills and maturity than what I witness in a lot teens when I see them in public. And I'm not saying that to be snotty, that's just genuinely how I remember things. I don't ever remember a time when an adult would speak to me and I would just stare back at them, or when someone would make a joke and I wouldn't at least laugh a little to be polite. No wonder I didn't fit in when I was in elementary and middle school. And lest you guys start to think I hate all teens, last night I met a 15-year-old who I thought was very mature, interesting and articulate. She told me she didn't fit in at all either.
 

Vladimir

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At least they didn't kill anyone, as opposed to some adults. Maybe they're annoying, but everyone got through this and I feel offended by you thinking that teens will never change and are immature idiots.

I could add more, but I didn't sleep much and I can't think.
 
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daria7483

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Well, sorry - the point I was trying to make is that when teens act like immature idiots, they give adults like me the impression that they will always be immature idiots. And I'm also trying to point out that I don't see that behavior among the teens on this forum. And yes, I realize immature behavior is not the same thing as killing people, and I'm glad they're not doing that. I don't think they ever will. I don't think they are BAD kids who would want to harm anyone. It's just I'm worried that the current teens (and my generation as well) spend so much time IMing and texting that they don't know how to speak to adults in real life. That they have so many electronic toys to entertain them that anything less than that is boring and worthless. And that if this mindset and behavior isn't outgrown (and I'm not entirely convinced it will be, in all cases) that that will be detrimental to society as a whole.
 
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At times, I'll admit, I acted like a total wanker in my earlier teen years. Much in the same fashion as you are describing daria. And I turned out fine... mostly!

Heh... nah. Seriously though, I think it's pretty normal. Sound just like typical teenage asshattery and idiocy. If they don't grow out of it, then they'll soon learn just how much growing up they really need to do when they finish school.
 

Pojo

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Well...I do have a lot of those electronic things, but I know how to talk to adults...Sure with other friends I can be immature, but that's how teens are these days...It doesn't mean they are going to turn out bad...Maybe they will if they are ones who do drugs/drink (I don't)...But other than that, they should turn out well
 
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I love being immature, I avoid being a total douche and disrupting other people though.

I think you understand. I like to think I'm mature during some situations and not when I am with my friends. :)
 

Chillhouse

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i is out to getz you!


Let me tell you about a trip I had to go on last week. It was for my guidence/career class. It was a trip to the local steel mill. On a good day, my class has 25 students in it. On this day though, only about six showed up. The rest skipped or were too busy being "sick" at home.

So the few of us that were there (I was there just to get out of class; I have no interest in working in a steel mill) loaded onto the bus. When we got down to the mill, some workers got onto the bus and began giving us a very borring tour of the place. It was noisy, smelly, and full of highschool drop-outs. Trying to breathe there was like drinking mud. And he was trying to tell us how it was such a great place to work. I couldn't hear the rest of what he said.

There was one part where he was telling us an answer on the test that our teacher was going to give us the next day. "Okay, listen up," he said. "Because this next thing I'm about to say is an answer on your test. It's about the three key ingredients in making steel. This is abosolutely crucial for you to know. Here comes the answer... And those three key ingredients are--" deafening roar as a gigantic truck passes beside the bus-- "... and those are three key ingredients!"

Then we went to a conference room where they attempted to explain what kind of jobs you would do if you worked there. I hate to say it, but I fell asleep. There was one thing he said that woke me and the rest of the group up though. He was talking about the amount of money you could make if you worked there (and, as we all know, money is the only important thing to consider when selecting a career). "You can make a lot of money working here. Upwards of $40-50,000 a year. It's hard work, but you're gonna' love the bulge in your pants!"

All the teenagers started laughing, but the poor guy didn't realize what he had said. Then we resumed our blank expressions as he continued talking about stuff no one cared about. He took a tally at the end of the lecture to see who would like to work there. Out of a room of 60 students, no one raised their hand.


So yeah, there's my anecdote. I have no idea what my point is.
 
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Daria, I bet you got the slower class, In my experience, those people at my school, are stupid, think they are better than everyone else, and think they will be rich.

Do not take it personally. Just laugh at them when you see them at BK.
 
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daria7483

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Well, happy lurker, I would like to think this trip was a bit more interesting and less hokey than what you described :) And I feel a little bit better now. I imagine these kids will grow up eventually, and if they don't, well, we do need people to work at BK.
 

Vladimir

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Well, sorry - the point I was trying to make is that when teens act like immature idiots, they give adults like me the impression that they will always be immature idiots. And I'm also trying to point out that I don't see that behavior among the teens on this forum. And yes, I realize immature behavior is not the same thing as killing people, and I'm glad they're not doing that. I don't think they ever will. I don't think they are BAD kids who would want to harm anyone. It's just I'm worried that the current teens (and my generation as well) spend so much time IMing and texting that they don't know how to speak to adults in real life. That they have so many electronic toys to entertain them that anything less than that is boring and worthless. And that if this mindset and behavior isn't outgrown (and I'm not entirely convinced it will be, in all cases) that that will be detrimental to society as a whole.
May I remind you that IMing involves real persons?
And it's completely the opposite of what you're saying. Social life is much more important to teenagers as it was a few years ago to, say, their parents.
 

Takashi

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Well my friends and I are very childish in school like before it starts and at lunch, but we really do have some intelegent discutions and when it comes down to it I think we are the smartest people in the school. The reason I say that is because if you take a look around my school smart people are very hard to come by.

To answer your question it's 50/50 weather they will grow out of it.
 
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Well my friends and I are very childish in school like before it starts and at lunch, but we really do have some intelegent discutions and when it comes down to it I think we are the smartest people in the school.
QFT about myself. I'm definently not the smartest in school, but I am in a few subjects, Science, good writer, etc.

Most Childish people it seems to me are the ones people hate, and the people that are teh smrt. What you described Daria, is tards. :)
 
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PuddleFopsKit

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Ew, some people are just that way.. it has nothing to do with being a teen.

Don't beat yourself up over it. If there don't show any interest in their future, then that's their problem. Maybe after they dig ditches for a few years, they'll wake up and realize that to get anywhere in life, takes effort, and dedication.
 

Darkfinn

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A lot of teens these days act like total clowns... I can't always blame them... the majority of it rests on society and the parents.

I'm not going to go into a huge rant about it... since I have in other threads... but unless parents start disciplining their kids... it's gonna be a downhill slide.
 

baconbit

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It's your normal teen. Doing stupid immature stuff and being overly depressed for no reason.
I think teens on here don't seem that way because we aren't normal. Normal teens act immature in public tbs and stuff don't because they try to be inconspicuous. Many of us probably talk to older people more making us seem to act smarter. The blank expression i can't really talk about because i don't know much about that part. I gusse it depends on the person and that is all.
 

Peachy

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I think there are many issues involved here: FOr one, teens will always try to test the rules and see how far they can bend or break them. That's why the kids at the skating rink were acting like idiots - the supervisor went away, so they had the place to themselves. Just ask your grandfather what kind of stupid praks he and his friends may have pulled on teachers...and back then, punishment was a lot more severe than it is today.
There's my point number two: Back in the days, kids would be spanked or beaten for misbehaving. Today, they just get some disapproving words from their parents or authorities. I'm not saying beating kids is a good thing, so I'll stay neutral on this one and just note that people tend to break the rules more often when punishment doesn't hurt all that much.
Point 3: Teens generally lose interest in many things during puberty (except for interest in other cute/hot people, of course!), so you can't blame them for not being very enthusiastic about that career event you planned. Unfortunately, very many important life choices fall into a time when you just couldn't care less about them, and everyone over the age of 18 realizes that. So you try to use logic and tell the teens that their career choice is oh so important and they just won't listen, but it's like telling a tree to move - it won't listen!
Point 4: It has become increasingly more difficult being a teen these days. School is more demanding than it used to be in your parents' or grandparents' generation, parents have higher expectations and there's more competition on the job market. Heck, back then, it wasn't unusual to finish your career in the same company where you've started it, but today, people switch jobs and companies about every 2-3 years. The stability is gone, so how can you blame teens for losing all hope and faith for their careers in an environment like that?

Peachy
 

starshine

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Actually, its funny, my best friend and I just had a little realization a couple weeks back.

We were sitting outside, having a smoke and drinking our coffee at the Tim Hortons. These two girls get off the bus, they are screaming, and laughing extremely loud. The one girl tries to trip the other, and they are just being obnoxious. They go in, walk out, and they are complaining loudly about the service.

So anyways they end up walking away, so Tammy goes "they are so disgusting." So then I go, "Dude... that was us 6 months ago." She goes, "Holy shit."

I guess in teens you just have to get to that stage to realize you are no longer a child, your becoming an adult, and your actions matter.
 

BromeTeks

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On the subject of them not laughing at your jokes, that's because they are not amusing to us teens. I have witnessed first hand that many adults suck at making jokes that entertain teens.
 
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daria7483

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Oh trust me, I've been on the receiving end of bad jokes many times. It's just that when you are an adult, those jokes are often coming from your boss, your in-laws or the CEO of your business. So you learn to fake laugh or at least fake smile. I guess that's something you don't learn until you're an adult though.
 

Charlie

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It's not enough to be hip, you have to be cool!

I'd say what you saw were typical teens, in fact what you mentioned didn't sound bad... nobody got hurt! I mean I wouldn't throw ice or show no enthusiasm at a career talk (if it was totally wack we might have dis-ed it a bit, but not blank faces...). But I think a lot of teens really do lack discipline, I blame parents really...

Like in news recently here some teenagers got arrested for brutality murdering a 'goth', just because she was a 'goth', and their parents were actually laughing when the police came to arrest the teens. That's distrubing, not only do the parents not care, they found it funny!
And the police wonder why everyone carry knives... Every time I leave the house at night I'm open to possibility that I'm going to be beaten up... Not even robbed or raped, just beat up for no reason!

So yeah, a lot of teens have no respect for authority... When I'm an old man I'm moving to some place where the kids will still call me Sir. :D If such a place really exists!

I think the problem could be that people treat teens like kids, and buy the time you're 14/15 you've lost all respect for older people. If your parents aren't good role models then you're doomed to grow up like this...
 
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