Let’s face it, parenting children especially teenagers and young adults is way more different than what it was during our times as kids and teens. Not generalizing, but most of the middle-class Indian parents would never talk about consent, hormones, puberty, sex education; homosexuality and LGBTQ being unheard of! Even when there was an “odd kissing scene” in any movie, the channel would be changed hurriedly. Having curiosity about sex or changes in the body or opposite gender would be frowned upon. Most of us came to know about a lot of stuff only through friends or post marriage!
As a generation of parents, we have transitioned, made conscious efforts to be more open and frank with our children. Still I read many people lamenting about parents should not be “friends” with their kids. In my humble opinion and almost 2 decades of parenting, talking it out helps more than hiding or chiding. It prevents the curious, hormonally charged children to go astray or experiment in wrong ways to curb their enthusiasm or curiosity. The transition from those “good” children to the “frank” parents has not been easy; but when someone from the previous generation tells me, “That’s how it used to be”, I always have this question, “No one taught this to us as parents too, then how did learn and unlearn certain things?” If we allow things to continue and don’t try to bring in the change, nothing will change. From those gawky teens who couldn’t and still can’t question or utter certain “prohibited” words in front of our parents to the frank parents ourselves, it has been a long, insightful, challenging, learning journey.
The change didn’t happen in one day..