What is the generation gap?The generation gap is the difference in thoughts, beliefs, and attitudes between people of different age groups. Change is the need of time. The world and life are changing at a fast speed. Lifestyle, philosophies, beliefs, attitudes, theories about life, nature, fashion are changing with time. It's good for society. However, it also became a conflict between families having a subsequent age difference. Generation gap often leads to problems in the parent-child relationship. It leads to a clash between parents and children.
How it impacts relations?Parents have their own expectations from their child. They have their own belief that their child should follow their traditions, culture, language, and values. They impose all of this on their children. It affects their relationship when the child has a different mindset and thoughts about life. This leads to tension in their relationship. They both fail to bridge the gap. Parents are rigid on their beliefs and opinions in some cases and refuse to overlook them. On the other side, children feel frustrated with this and they start hiding and asking things from parents. Generation gap deepens.
A girl studying in college fourth year of engineering got placed in campus recruitment. Her whole group of friends got selected in one or the other companies. They all planned for a party in a pub celebrating their happiness. She also thought of joining them. She asked her mother regarding the same. Her mother was like "Are you mad? Seriously you have a thought of going to a pub?"
The girl replied with fear "Yes, my friends are going. So I thought of going with them." Then the mother replied in a heavy tone "Not at all. All these places are not for you. Strange people will go to pubs. Then the girl managed to give an answer "It's nothing like that. My friends have already been there. To this, her mother replied "It's not good for girls. Usually, boys drink and tease girls in pubs." The girl understood her mistake of asking permission from her mother. This is a result of the generation gap. Children hide their activities from their parents as they fail to make them understand their point and thoughts. I am not telling that our parents are always wrong. They give guidance to their kids to take the right decisions in life at times.
Changes in societyThere are many changes in our society as a result of this generation gap. Changes are happening at different levels of our society.
- Nuclear family - Earlier people prefer a joint family. They believe in sharing and caring for each other. But the current generation wants privacy than any other thing. Nuclear families are evidence of the same. The concept of the joint family deteriorated over the years. The new generation wants the freedom of choice and lifestyle. They consider the joint family as a barrier for them.
- Love marriages - With the new opinions and ideologies, the new generation prefers love marriage over arrange marriages. Parents used to choose for their daughters and they blindly get married to the person chosen by her parents. The concept of love marriage is also a result of continuous changes adopted by new generations. People are accepting love marriage nowadays.
- Working women - Old generation women were confined to home. Their image was only for homemakers rather than doing some professional work. They were supposed to take care of home and children. But it has changed now. Nowadays women can enter any field of their choice and grows as an individual. There are no barriers for them.
How to bridge this gap?
- Acceptance - Old generations should understand that their children are born in a new age. It's natural that their children have different mindset and lifestyle from them. They should accept this fact and try changing their thoughts and opinions with time. There is no harm in change. Change is always for the good. On the other hand, children should also accept that parents are rigid regarding some things. They should respect that. Nothing is right or wrong completely. It's just a matter of our perspective.
- Becoming friends with each other - The two generations should become friends with each. They should share their thoughts, opinions freely. Parents play an important role in this. They should give a forum to their children to discuss their each and every idea with them frankly. They shouldn't impose their thoughts and beliefs on them. Children should also listen to their parents. Parents are our best guide in life. They have more experience than us.
- Adapting the change - Parents should adopt the small required changes with their children. Rather than sticking to old ideas and stereotypes, they should opt for change. They should themselves try new generation lifestyle and beliefs for their children. Children should also respect them and do certain things in their way. Adapting each other's ideas and opinions gives happiness and strengthen their bond.
- Value their relation - Parent and child relationship is the most beautiful of all. Both sides should value their relation. Their relationship shouldn't be affected by their generation gap. Both should put efforts and time to understand each other. Blindly imposing their opinions on each other, they should find a way between to keep their bond strong. Parents shouldn't condemn their children ideas constantly.
- Don't judge - Parents shouldn't judge their children and give them their space rather than poking their head in all situations. Children should be allowed doing things on their own. Two-way communication should be enhanced in a family. Parents and children should support. Understanding and accepting is the basis of this relationship.
The generation gap is a natural aspect. One generation is bound to be different from the previous ones. This is how humans are evolving from years. New ideas are always good. Every generation brings its own way of fashion, expression, and thoughts and sets examples before society. Restricting fresh ideas is a barrier to human growth. Acceptance is the solution behind this gap.