“Despite their often confident, even arrogant facade at times, young people or adolescents are looking for mentoring, boundaries and connections with adults.”
These are the words of author and future trends analyst Michael McQueen who will host a parent seminar De-coding the next generation in Warrnambool on Thursday night.
He said parents and community leaders played a “really critical role” in raising them “even though it sometimes it feels like they don’t need me, they’ve got it all sorted out,” Mr McQueen said.
He said issues causing “friction and frustration” at home included screen time, setting boundaries as well as teenagers’ attitudes to respect and patience.
“There is an expectation that their child will respect them because they’re they parent but respect has to be earnt with this group,” he said.
Mr McQueen will speak about raising children in this rapidly changing world and participate in a Q&A session. “The challenge for most parents (today) is you think ‘I don’t even know the world they’ve grown up in - the pace of change with technology and social attitudes and behaviour’,” he said.
“A lot of parents feel disempowered by that. They think ‘I’m not even sure how to connect with my kids at this very moment. I’m not necessarily keeping up with all the things in their world’.
Mr McQueen will work with parents to identify how children see the world differently and how to bridge the gap. Tips on how to build a positive relationship will also be included.
He said planning for a child’s future career path was another challenge for parents. “They’ve been told their whole lives they'll have careers in 15 years that haven’t even been invented yet and yet we still have the mentality that they have to figure out what they want to do,” Mr McQueen said.
“Their mentality is ‘how am I supposed to figure it out if it doesn’t exist yet?’ How do you have discussions with kids about their future when career planning is so different?”
Mr McQueen will decode the teenage mindset and discuss what has shaped their world view.
Mr McQueen said the role of social media was profound and its impact on how the group formed its identity was “quite interesting”.
He said teens were taking cues from social media about “what’s normal” when everything posted “is carefully curated”. “Everything in their life is exciting, wonderful and glamorous. They’re not getting a clear depiction.”
Mr McQueen is in Warrnambool for the Catholic Schools Southern Zone conference on Thursday and Friday. To book for the parent session go to trybooking.com/RGTC