I guess it comes with the territory, but every adult in the world seems to think they have secret knowledge that will crack the youth. They attribute their expertise on the subject of teenagers to an accumulation of years and experiences.
Apparently, the magic of time has given them a complete and all-knowing understanding of how we should feel, think and behave during all hours of the day. However, all beliefs should be challenged -- and I for one enjoy setting my parents straight.
Here are 10 things that make me cringe with exasperation. I know you can relate.
1. "Listen to your parents. They're always right."
Wrong. There is only one Yoda. Everyone else in the universe is bound to be wrong sometimes. I know it might surprise you to hear this, but we teenagers aren't always angsty, impulsive and inexperienced. Give us a chance.
2. "This should be the best time in your life. Enjoy it."
You're saying my life has peaked at 17? Excuse me if I refuse to believe that. I will enjoy all the world has to offer on my own terms, thank you very much. Otherwise I might become a teenage runaway. Which would you prefer?
3. "Wait 'till you get to the real world."
Where have I been living my entire life... Narnia? Sure, I may not be working year-round in an office, but Trig-Calc isn't exactly a cup of tea. My life is real enough: a package deal that's all-inclusive with drama, responsibility and obligations. Don't belittle me.
4. "Come home now."
Not going to lie, I might know where you're coming from with this one. You care about my well- being, which is sweet and all... but that doesn't make curfew any more enjoyable. Half an hour more couldn't hurt.
5. "You're a teenager. This is just a phase."
How can you possibly predict the future? I am currently in a process of creating an identity that isn't defined by the people around me. This phase just might stick. Even if it doesn't, please let me experience it without constant judgment. (Hint: the more you hate it, the longer it will last.)
6. "Why don't you tell me anything anymore?"
There are two possible reasons for our "lack of communication." Option A: All I've done the last few weeks is watch re-runs of "The O.C." I apologize for not giving you a play-by-play, but there is simply nothing of significance for me to be telling you. Option B: You're nosy and it's annoying. No form of torture will make me spill my secrets.
7. "I was your age once too, you know."
Yes, you are human. I understand the progression of time. But just because you were a teenager once doesn't mean you can relate to my experiences or how I am currently feeling. Even if you've gone through similar things (in the past), you have been tainted by the knowledge of parenthood. Sorry!
8. "I'm your friend."
Don't get me wrong, I like you and all... but we are not friends. I think that comes with the whole power dynamic of the family. If you give me rules, you're not my friend. If you make me wake up in the morning, you're not my friend. If you make me wash the dishes, we are definitely not friends.
9. "You don't know what's best for you."
And you think you do? Please refer to "Things I Don't Want To Hear," numbers one through eight. I know what I want. I know who I am. Don't set limitations on what I should do or who I should be.
10. "Grow up."
Look here parents, we're growing up whether we like it or not. We love you (ever so dearly) and absolutely appreciate the unconditional support. Sometimes you forget that the mistakes we make are actually the perfect way for us learn right from wrong. It's a process, be patient.