The generation “me da paja” by Alejandro Schujman.
“Raise your hand who a bakery half a block or less from home”
In the framework of the talks with teenagers I ask this question, I look into the eyes of the one who raises his hand, I play the joke that I am a seer and I make the following statement:
“Suppose your dad or mom asks you: ‘Mica, go buy the bread’, while you are in bed, with the celu and a bottle of water because it is hot, to which you respond” give me straw “.
The boys laugh, the protagonist makes a face of astonishment and I explain, to them, to you, of course, I am not a seer, I simply work every day of my life for more than 30 years with children and families.
We are raising and creating a generation of apathetic, apathetic teenagers, in absolute connection to the monitors and with little connection to emotions. With an emphasis on results and enormous difficulty in facing processes.
In the summer months, for example, one of the essential points of conflict is that the boys spend days and nights (although in reality they sleep until late in the day), connected to the screens.
I don’t want to fall into this question that every past time was better (because I don’t think so either), but at this point, when I was 14 years old (just four decades ago), there were no social networks or screens, only landlines, if it is that worked.
So I would go out to visit my friends’ houses, ring the bell to see who could get together to spend time doing something fun.
Today, boys and girls, with all the technology available as a wonderful springboard to generate the encounter, it happens to them that “excessively easy is difficult for them.”
Hours watching if they do something, checking if someone “sets a house” and, finally, each on his own, alone and alone with the screens.
To the lollipop gift, each one attends his game, that is, the one of the return in circle around the not being able to make concrete. When I ask my teenage patients, “What’s up on the weekend? Did you do something nice? ” Many times the answer is: “We didn’t put anything together, he gave us straw.”
Among the multitude of social networks, putting together a program of two or three seems like little. So they usually stay in the company of their cell phones, very, very boring.
Ladies and gentlemen, we are raising and creating the “medapaja” generation.
I wrote a few months ago about full album syndrome, that comfort patch in the first years of life is the prequel to this generation.
Hyper facilitation that occurs from the parents from the belief that they will have time to suffer, so now there are no limits, that they do not suffer, and care: we disable them, we take away the possibility of passion, we leave them without the tool essential to enter the adult world.
The easy ends up being boring, and on the virtual plane things are usually easier.
In the interpersonal it is not so simple. Looking into the eyes is not the same as interacting on the screens. The boys have a phrase that gives me tenderness and is also very precise. “You are a pure keyboard”, this is how they refer to those who brag on social networks but face to face “wrinkle”.
The essential thing is: they are our children, they did not come out of a cabbage, they are the children of generations of comfort. Easy is never good, good is never easy.
They are children of mothers and fathers who respond quickly and positively to the cry of: Mom, I want juice! while they play in their bedroom and with air conditioning.
Children of fathers and mothers who feel guilty because on top of that they have little time to be at home, are they going to set limits, are they going to fight, are they going to be unfriendly?
Let’s spread bright eyes, show that growing is good and that passion and enthusiasm are part of our life.
The study, another conflict zone.
“If I can give him the taste, he will have time for life to be difficult for him,” say some fathers and mothers. But the point is that if we do not lovingly make life difficult for them, then they have no resources to face the vicissitudes of living.
Let’s remember: these sons and daughters have under our responsibility a very low level of frustration, zero waiting capacity, and at 23 they want to be managers. And those responsible, not guilty, we are parents.
The good news is that we can do more than we do, and differently.
Profile of the “medapaja” generation
✔️They do not read books, they study from the “Lazy corner” (web portal with summaries ready to break free)
✔️ They do not play sports, they play FIFA 2020 on consoles.
✔️ They do not do programs, outings and walks if there are not several, going from 2 to have a drink is little, accustomed to virtual crowds less than 5 is not enough.
✔️They don’t walk, they ride on Uber.
✔️They do not complete the folders in class, they use WhatsApp photos that are passed to them by those who do.
✔️They don’t study during the year, they are December and February players.
✔️ They do not recognize mistakes, the fault is always with the rest of the world.
✔️They do not recalculate or anticipate the possible complications of living.
What they do not know is that in life there are no “checkpoints” or save points, but rather it is made by walking.
✔️Let our children get frustrated.
✔️Permit the error, without intervening directly.
✔️Let us not facilitate hyper-comfort from analgesia in living.
✔️Alternate activities outside of school that present healthy challenges (artistic, sports, etc.)
✔️Let’s regulate the use of technology from a young age.
✔️Let us not negotiate or naturalize the consumption of alcohol and psychoactive substances, which are perfect partners of apathy and abulia.
✔️But above all, let’s spread bright eyes, show that growing is good and that passion and enthusiasm are part of our life.
Let’s educate passion, let’s educate dreams, not drowsiness. Let’s educate bright eyes. Let’s educate effort, because effortlessly nothing interesting happens in life.
Let’s educate boys and girls who have no problem going to buy bread, and what’s more, let us knead bread with them so that they understand that good things are the result of a process and personal effort.
That the warm bread that they have on the table is the result of a meticulous preparation and also the fruit of the work of those who buy it.
Let us not give them life served on a tray, because then they will “give straw” to go out and fight for their ideals and our children will have a sad life.
Because here is the most important thing in this note: the youth of these generations have their passion intact, crouching and ready to face life as soon as adults show them the way.
Our task is to leave signs for them to enter the adult world, and the signs that we are leaving are comfortable seats for them to wait for life served on a platter. And it does not work, and we take away their freedom because they are imprisoned in the limitations that we ourselves help them build.
Let’s change the rules of the game, let’s put together parent blocks that add up to give our youth what they need, we can do it, we must do it.
As I always say, once again, difficult but not impossible!
* Alejandro Schujman is a psychologist specialized in families. Author of Generation Ni-Ni, It is not because I say so and Tools for parents.
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