Is it any wonder that kids, teenagers, and young adults today cling to tablets, iPhones, or iPods viewing social media, youtube, or chatrooms? When families today can be disconnected, disengaged, and uninterested? I don’t think so. I think it makes perfect, logical sense.
A kid or teenager is looking for a mother/father figure; someone who takes care of their needs and provides for them. One of those basic needs is food, but sometimes this is just provided in the form of a $20 bill on the fridge with a post-it note attached to it labelled: “Food for the Day!” Another one of those needs is love. This need is often dismissed and regarded as an “unessential basic need.” If you argue for this point, you will lose. Too much research has been completed proving you wrong. With parents working double shifts, overtime, and if you live in a two parent home, both parents working…where’s the love? Where is the attention? Where is the sense of belonging, purpose, or the remote sense that you matter?
Well, there are millions or people out there, updating, vlogging (video blogging), writing, and chatting, just waiting to make you feel like you matter to them. The reality? They are seeking it as well. There is an entire world of people seeking what they couldn’t find in childhood. Grasping for what was taken from them unfairly. Venting for what left them when they were only 3 years old. There is an entire generation of people…abandoned…reaching out with videos and social media, clinging to their devices like their surrogate parent. My dad is my iPhone. My Mother, is Facebook. I am validated by the comments, likes, views, and retweets. I matter and am loved here, in this space, even when I am ignored, neglected, and forgotten by my own Father, my own Mother.
I find this a sad reality. It’s growing, and it’s not being properly addressed. Please note that there are single parent homes where the parent does a legendary job loving their child(ren), caring for them, and making them feel like they matter. I am obviously not speaking about those families. I am speaking about the broken households that breed a generation of attached treasure seekers, looking for that perfect video, status, tweet, or photo that makes them feel important, and fills a gap left there by a disengaged parental figure.
If you feel like I am talking about you, do not feel like I am calling you out on what you are doing. I never take vices away from people unless they are harming themselves. Rather, I am trying to bring light to this…to hope that we can find a less automatic solution for loving a child. Maybe I’m wrong…I just hope I’m not.