How many consequences did you have to bear growing up as a teenager?
We all lived separate lives growing up, even with our intuitions. We all left home at some point and returned to still find home. We bonded with nature more often than we did with material possessions as we didn’t quite have much competition then. Loneliness could sometimes pay us a visit and we still wouldn’t miss it’s absence when it’s gone as we were more than carefree. One of the main reasons we broke a little and fell short of our beautiful pride was wanting to ‘belong’. As there were many things to try, many people to look up to, attitudes and experiences to pick up from, we pried into each others’ affairs to gain a place.
At thirteen, I wouldn’t give you a piece of my meal in school if you wouldn’t let me be part of what you are planning with others. It was more like a bargain to me then. You wouldn’t extract from me what I know without getting me involved with what you’re doing with the information. At some point, I became repellent to people and was tagged “stingy”.
Gradually, I started choosing who I kept around and who I ran off to. It did help but it made me repel people, as the more I got comfortable with a group, the more I bonded with them and the less I wanted people involved with us. “snub” became the new name. This one lasted for eternity. Yes! I say that, because people who knew me then still think of me that way. As a matter of fact, I accepted it with pride.
I denied myself the luxury of fighting back. I denied every part of me that was anti-snub, perhaps just not to feel bothered about it. It did bother me but not until my mates were also tagged as one, then I felt it was just people’s problems and not mine nor my friends.
Most teenagers deny a part of them just to go with it. It may not be people calling them ‘stingy’ or ‘snub’, it may be ‘bullying’, ‘stalking’, gossiping’or what have you. Whatever the case may be, most teenagers just tend to go with it than let it out.
Parents especially, notice behavioural changes in their teens and react differently to different situations they find them in. The only bitter advice most get, is to “fight back” which isn’t easy at that stage and that is why most teenagers tend to withdraw and lose connection with their parents.
Every teenager I believe have the strength to conquer any form of denial but it takes ‘two to tango’ doesn’t it? It takes help, comfort and understanding to aid them get through.
What have you learnt about teens from today’s TTTT episode?
Dyna Ekwueme Copyright, 2016.