Tag Archive | Growing Up

Survey: Is Growing Up Easier or Harder?

Survey: Is Growing Up Easier or Harder?
By Paul Nix

In a last month’s edition of HomeWord’s Good Advice Parent Newsletter, we asked our readers to take a brief survey about whether teens have it easier or harder growing up today than you did when you were a teen. Here are the results of the survey.

Overall, parents overwhelmingly believe growing up as a teen today is more difficult (88%) than when they were teens. Interestingly, as we asked about different issues that teens face, the responses ranged from a whopping 95% of parents who believe dealing with media issues today is harder for today’s teens to just 55% of parents who see dealing with peer pressure as harder today.

Following, you’ll find the various questions, parent responses, and some selected comments on each issue.

Question 1: Overall, when you compare growing up as a teen today to growing up when you were a teen, do you feel teens have it harder or easier today?

1. Harder: 88%
2. Easier: 4%
3. About the same: 8%

Selected Comments:

“There are way too many grey areas in society AND THE CHURCH where in my teen years there was more “black and white”; more definition of right and wrong.”

“There are more pressures for sex at an earlier age and pushing for accepting alternative lifestyles. Also drugs/alcohol continue to be pressed to younger and younger children. More kids live in single-family homes where there is no real structure/guidance and are growing up alone, scared and confused.”

Question 2: Regarding dealing with sexuality, when you compare growing up as a teen today to growing up when you were a teen, do you feel teens have it harder or easier today?

1. Harder: 86%
2. Easier: 5%
3. About the same: 9%

Selected Comments:

“I see the girls at my daughters’ school and how they dress and act and can’t believe it, they’re 12 and wearing low cut or revealing tops, and necking in the hallways. I think sex is talked about more now than 30 years ago, but I also think it’s much more accepted, our moral values are sadly lacking today compared to when I was teen.”

“Sex is everywhere!! The internet brings it right into the home, and between TV, movies, etc…it is very tough to escape!”

Question 3: Regarding dealing with alcohol and drugs, when you compare growing up as a teen today to growing up when you were a teen, do you feel teens have it harder or easier today?

1. Harder: 66%
2. Easier: 3%
3. About the same: 31%

Selected Comments:

“This prescription drug crisis we never thought of touching our parents Meds, and I think a lot less parents were on meds!”

“There’s a lot out there, but there’s also a lot of anti-drug knowledge out there.”

Question 4: Regarding dealing with peer pressure, when you compare growing up as a teen today to growing up when you were a teen, do you feel teens have it harder or easier today?

1. Harder: 55%
2. Easier: 0%
3. About the same: 45%

Selected Comments:

“I think that peer pressure is peer pressure … the problem is today what they are pressured to do comes at a younger age and is broader in scope.”

Question 5: Regarding growing a strong faith, when you compare growing up as a teen today to growing up when you were a teen, do you feel teens have it harder or easier today?

1. Harder: 60%
2. Easier: 3%
3. About the same: 37%

Selected Comments:

“This is difficult to answer because although things over all are more difficult for teens there are so many more opportunities for teens to be involved and have access to spiritual growing.”

“It’s different, as bad as the Internet is…you can also access a lot of great things to grow in Christ like you never could before!”

Question 6: Regarding dealing with media (music, movies, TV, Internet, etc.), when you compare growing up as a teen today to growing up when you were a teen, do you feel teens have it harder or easier today?

1. Harder: 95%
2. Easier: 1%
3. About the same: 4%

Selected Comments:

“There is too much out there, its easily accessed and too little restraint on it.”

“Children are exposed to a lot more than in my day, the media wants to sell…sex, drugs, money, power and they make it seem like it’s the best things to have in life. It’s very saddening. We need a revival.”

Question 7: Regarding dealing with violence within the culture, when you compare growing up as a teen today to growing up when you were a teen, do you feel teens have it harder or easier today?

1. Harder: 84%
2. Easier: 4%
3. About the same: 12%

Selected Comments:

“Each year seems to bring more and more violence.”

“Video games, school shootings, violence in movies — it’s all around.”

Thank you to everyone who completed our survey!

This article “Survey – Is Growing Up Harder?” by Paul Nix is excerpted from Good Advice for Parents newsletter, September 2008

Posted in AIS File Library, YMGE - Youth Ministry0 Comments


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