Monday, September 08, 2008
Taking A Break From Finance AND Politics
Look, one of the reasons normal people (liberal, libertarian, or conservative) are not that judgmental about the things OTHER people's teenagers do is because hearing or reading about those escapades makes the normal people feel better about the things that they did when they were teens, and the things that their own teens did or are doing.
One of my friends has a daughter who just got busted for shoplifting, and believe me, that did not occur from lack of parenting skills or effort.... In fact, it came about because the daughter in question refused to obey her mother's pettifogging, irrational rules and moved out at eighteen, launching stratospherically into a new world of freedom and idiocy.
Frankly, getting pregnant is not the worst thing in the world. It's not a crime, you know? It comes about quite normally and naturally, and it is much less of a problem when you approve of the boy or the girl. "Too early" is light years away from "Oh, no, not with him!"
What normal people do when their teens get busted is make sure they spend a night in jail and get a good scare, then you ask the judge to throw the book at the teen if you think he or she still hasn't gotten the message. Some of the nicest, most reliable people I know have spent time in jail. It's better to make sure it comes earlier rather than later.
If anyone has ever heard of a more creative way of getting busted than Nate's, please go over and leave a note on the post. It will probably make the father feel a bit better.
Oh - and if your teen didn't do anything like this, don't feel too proud. The odds are that you just got lucky. As long as you are not out there identifying the body, you're not doing too badly as a parent.
I have to say I don't see what the big deal is either, getting pregnant sounds fun!
hold on a second.....
OK, another advisor just informed me of this thing called "penis roulette" that young males play. Apparently we could plot a distribution of the odds that my opponents daughter is just an unlucky sexually active teenager instead of some kind of hypocrite.
I didn't really understand what he was talking about since I was probably not in class the day we learned about that at harvard.
Two amazing things:
1. That I survived to maturity (defined as smart enough not to do stupid, dangerous things).
2. That I don't have a softball team of offspring, some of for which I would still be paying child support.
And my parents taught me what was right. I just chose to behave differently.
Of course, some of us manage to screw up spectacularly, but who wasn't at least a partial jerk for part of their teenage years?
Adolescents are in the transition between child and adult, learning how to be an adult. And they're gonna screw up. The trick is to screw up without destroying themselves or everyone around them.
A lot of technical adults still haven't gotten that message.
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