Saturday, August 21, 2010

It's Official, I Have a Teenager in the House!

Jenn here. Today we are celebrating my daughter's 13th birthday! When I was her age, I couldn't wait to grow up, but Celina is unique. She tells me all the time that she doesn't want to grow up.  Now that I look back, I think she's much smarter than I was.

I looked up her generation on Wikipedia and Celina fits right in with her peers. They are called the Peter Pan Generation. They have the "never grow up syndrome". While I recognize the dangers in this mindset--the potential to be in denial and not mature as is appropriate, but God has given me peace when I begin to worry about that.

This is why. When something profound happens, Celina may not say much, but what she says can be insightful. She has a mature perspective on things that give my husband and I moments to pause, and we hear maturity in the way she thinks. Perhaps God is preparing this generation for things our generation has never experienced or seen.

What are your thoughts on this upcoming generation?

And Happy Birthday to my girl!


  1. Hi Jennifer:

    I’m afraid that the internet has competed the phenomena mentioned in Edgar Z. Friedenberg’s 1960’s, “Vanishing Adolescent”. There are few adult secrets anymore. There is little perceived advantage in being an adult. Puberty is happening many years earlier. Children are staying on their parent’s insurance policy until 26 and many 30 year olds are moving back in with their parents – if they ever left! (The Boomerang generation.)

    I feel a little like the older generation in Arthur C. Clarke’s “Childhood’s End”. Could this be the last generation?

    That they would even name a generation the “Peter Pan” generation is a matter of great concern.

    Does the older generation always view the younger generation in this way or do you think things have really altered?


  2. Vince,

    Celina is part of Generation Z, born in th 1990's. They have sometimes been referred to as "The Peter Pan Generation". They are definitely the digital age Internet kids.

    I was reading an article the other day about how the class of 2014 do not write in cursive, read face clocks, use email, etc. My daughter is the class of 2016. She hates cursive, only wants digital clocks and watches, and doesn't see the point in setting up email. In her mind that is what FB and texting is for.

    I was fretting over this stuff bc she used to have special needs, but now I'm thinking it isn't just my daughter, it may be the conceptual thinking of the whole generation.

    As a member of Generation X, I can identify w/Boomers and Generation Y, but more often with the latter. I see lots of changes taking place in our world. The younger generations will never have a chance to know some of the blessings we've known in a more simple life with morals and values that society maintained as a whole. Some of those boundaries are gone, and I fear they won't return. As a result, these kids are missing out and we have the job of preparing them for the uknown. We must rely on faith more and more.

  3. Hi Jennifer:

    First I want to wish your daughter a happy birthday!

    I’ve predicted for years in my Commutations class that future generations will not bother learning how to read. Everything will have speech recognition. Laser pen light beams will land on signs and read the words out loud. It never occurred to me that the loss of cursive writing and non-digital clocks would come first. Now I am very sure that knowing how to read is on the endangered list!

    One way to encourage and demonstrate values would be to read historical fiction like “Highland Blessings”. In these works genuine values are exemplified. I wonder what a 13 year old girl today would think of Akira? Would she recognize how extraordinary a heroine Akira is or would she think Akira lacking compared to Bella in “Twilight”?

    Akira is currently my number one (BFF)heroine in all of romance! : )


  4. Akira is a great heroine. I agree.

    Happy birthday Celina!

    Also, I was reading how the class of 2014 will not have email. I thought it was strange, but I guess not.

    Like Vince said, learning values will be from reading books like Jenn's. I guess if they don't read listening to books like Jenn's and others.
    It's hard for me to imagine a generation not reading, but I'm not going to pretend like it won't happen someday.

    Interesting thoughts.

    I remember when I turned 13 I had a slumber party at my dad's house. There were a few girls and my dad got up and made us eggs and bacon and toast for breakfast. I still remember that.

  5. Thirteen is a biggie!! My daughter has said in the past that she doesn't want to grow up. But as she's getting older, she's not saying that so much. I mentioned it to my hubby, and he said he's not so worried about it at 13, but if our 20 year old was saying that it could be a problem. :)

    I really laughed about the cursive and email! NONE of our kids write in cursive! And when I email something to them, I have to tell them to check. I think you're right that texting and FB are taking the place of email.

    I think each generation has different problems to face, so they change and grow with the times. But I guess we all turn out okay eventually. :)

  6. Vince, I haven't thought of Akira as a heroine BFF! Thank you!

    Lindi, I've had a few people email me wanting to know if they can get my book on audio b/c that is what they listen to on their way to and from work each day. Some requested it in that format at the Highland Games as well. I think books will need to start being published in every format. It shouldn't be too expensive since people could download it and they don't have to actually produce a physical CD.

    Missy, I'm not so worried about her not writing in cursive anymore, but she does struggle to read it. They told us in a committee last year not to worry about it, she can type all her notes in class. Then when I brought up the issue of spelling, they told me the computers would take care of it as if I was worrying needlessly.

    I guess we need to buy her one of those little mini-notebook computers. I'm just worried she would lose it or someone would steal it.