I think I'm going to create a little series trying to combat these bad feeling towards the youth of today and make us all feel a little better about teenagers. Hopefully. I mean, I'm gonna try.
The first thing I'm going to combat today is;
"Teenagers are so selfish. They only care about themselves and about no-one else."
I mean, I actually hear these words. In books, from people who walk around the street. I'll tell you who I heard this from. I'm just walking around town and I walk into someone. I sometimes am in a bit of a daydream and before I get to say sorry to my unsuspecting victim they grumble about how selfish I am. Jeez. This was annoying in two ways;
1) This person didn't give me time to say sorry and see how truly selfless I am. (An exaggeration perhaps.)
2) This person was only about twenty. I mean, like they're so old and wise. So far from their selfish teenage years.
I don't think teenagers are selfish. Or at least, I see every human as probably a tiny bit selfish and that being selfish is just a human trait and not one that is specifically limited to the ages between twelve to eighteen. All people care about looking after number 1 and it's not like I suddenly I turned 12 and all I cared about was myself and didn't even try to look out for other people. In fact, I think teenagers actually care about other people quite a lot. I would put up an argument that teenagers care about other people perhaps as much or more than adults do.
My friends are sincerely some of the nicest people I know. And funnily enough, my closest friends are all teenagers.They don't have to care about me, buy me gifts for my birthday, throw me a surprise party for me. If all they cared about was themselves then they wouldn't do any of those things. They do those things because I like to think they care about me. If they were the teenagers the media paint them out to be, they would in fact, buy gifts for themselves. I tell my friends I love them constantly and they know that I care about them too. If all I cared about was myself I doubt I would be doing these things either.
And it's not just a "one off," just me and my friends. I see girls I don't know buying gifts for each other around town all the time. In fact just the other day I saw a girl, about my age, looking wistfully at a top and putting it back on the hanger. Her friend gave her a look and said;
"Why aren't you buying it?It looked great!"
"Because I can't afford it." The other girl, seeing this as definitely not a good enough reason for buying a very pretty top from New Look took the top herself went straight to check out, paid for it and handed it back to what I presumed as quite a shell shocked friend. I saw them hugging and smiling. There were no questions that went through the friends mind as she went out to checkout. She didn't stop and say, "Ooh but I could use this £25.00 to buy myself a top." She went to checkout and brought her friend that top. Because she's nice. And not selfish. And cares about other people.
I care about people who aren't my friends too. Just because I walked into someone doesn't mean I don't care about them. I mean, I don't know where this not caring about others business came from. Is there any proof of this? Where did people even get the notion from? Because I don't see it. Ever. I mean, I meet mean teenagers, who maybe are selfish. But I meet mean adults who I would consider just as selfish.
I think the more I think about it the reason the reasons that people take this opinion is that the media present lots of teenage girls as these self absorbed creatures who follow the males around like that's all they care about. I think something that the media is lacking are just stories where there are girls and they always have friends. Maybe friends who don't let each other down all the time. But maybe that wouldn't make as interesting story. I get four girls who have a dead friend who is haunting them is more interesting. (Annoyingly a teenage trait is to pretend to dislike something I like. So, apologies to Pretty Little Liars.)
I'm not saying we're all saints. But hey! We're not all selfish either. And we care about other people as much as you guys do. So give us a break. And maybe we'll be nicer about the mood swings.
Do you think teenagers are selfish? Are there any other stereotypes of teenagers that you would like me to combat? Are you a bit older and have the hindsight that I lack? Leave a comment below!