26th Ask Josh – Kids These Days

In Uncategorized on October 7, 2008 at 10:18 pm

Cincinnatus says:

In this month’s Ensign, Elder Eric B. Shumway writes, “Even when they [youth] know these things [the fundamental doctrine] about marriage and family, many seem to slip through adolescence, teen years, and early adulthood naive and clueless about what a successful marriage entails. They are mature physically to be sure, full of the chemistry of desire, but often are not prepared psychologically, emotionally, or spiritually for the realities of marriage” (“Preparing Yourself For Marriage.” Ensign, Oct 2008. p55).

Supposing that this “relationship immaturity” is a greater problem for our generation than our parents’ generation or other previous generations, what do you believe are some of the contributing factors to our generation’s malaise of relationship skills?


Dear Cincinnatus, 

Let us suppose that we are much less mature than our parents were at our age.  If we are so socially inept as you suggest, what differences in our upbringing are most likely to be attributed as causal for aforementioned social ineptitude…. hmmm?

Well, in light of some recent events. Let us think about what has changed since our parents were kids.

The divorce rate has passed the 50% mark and is still climbing, so divorce is now the norm, so kids our age can understandably be prone to think that there is no such thing as a true long-term relationship, or if they do, they go into a long-term relationship expecting to fail.  

I have heard our generation referred to as “The Sesame Street Generation.”  This is supposed to mean that we have trouble doing anything boring or tedious because we are used to hearing catchy music or watching whimsical animation and action in everything we learn. We are used to being entertained all the time as we learn or work or do anything.  This has made it difficult for teachers to keep the attention of students in this generation.  They just can’t be entertaining the kids all the time.  Yet we expect to be entertained all the time.  If we are not in a constant state of euphoria, we are prone to think that something is terribly wrong with the situation.  

In the past weeks with the stock market crash, we see that almost all Americans are accustomed to living beyond their means. We are fiscally irresponsible, and we just refuse to take our comeuppance and we demand that the government bail us out.  It is almost as if we refuse to believe that our negative decisions should merit the negative consequences they bring.  If this is true, then it is easy to see why kids these days have few qualms about burning bridges as it were.  Why not? There are no negative consequences to actions!

And in the era of online shopping, we are able to get exactly what we want and have it sent right to us.  We don’t have to look around if we don’t want to.  We don’t need to put any time into finding the perfect item we have been searching for.  If I want a book, I don’t need to go from store to store, I just go online and get it cheap, and it comes right to me.  Accustomed to having what we want dropped right on our doorstep, it is easy to see why kids these days may be a little more picky about relationships.  If it isn’t perfect, why keep working at it?  We can just let it disappear and wait for the perfect one to just come to us.

That’s all for now. I have to get to bed.  

Happy hunting.

  1. Dear Josh,How can you tell if a boy is interested?

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