The generation gap means the difference between the attitude or lack of understanding between the young and old. This generation gap has always been there but now it has reached an explosive stage.
The values and the patterns of life have changed altogether. The world has left dictatorship and autocracy far behind. Now are the days democracy, freedom and equal rights. Inordinate authority is no longer tolerated. Everyone likes to live and behave in its own way. This attitude has widened the generation gap to a very wide extent.
Generation gap refers to differences in actions, beliefs, interests, and opinions that exist between individuals from different generations. So, what causes these differences?
One factor that has heavily influenced generation gaps is the accelerating rate of change in society. In the 1800s, developments in society were slow. As a result, two or three generations lived lifestyles that were very similar to each other. There weren’t many differences across generations. However, given technological and social advances that have taken place in the 20th and 21st centuries, the lifestyles of individuals even one generation apart are drastically different from each other.
Another factor that has influenced the generation gap is the increased mobility of society. In earlier generations, society was not very mobile. Most people stayed in the same area or country. There was little contact with people outside of one’s general area. Access to information from other cultures was limited. However, with the increasing advances of technology, people began to be introduced to new things.
This attitude destroying the family life completely. The elders look after the children and make all the sacrifices to bring them up. Naturally they feel that they have a right over them. They have certain expectations from them. The children on the other hand when grow up, want complete freedom of their thoughts and actions. Unfortunately their thoughts and behavior are dramatically contrast to the expectations of the elders. They revolt when they try to impose any kind of check on them.
How to cope with the generation gap?
- Make friendship with them instead of being rude parents. Let them express all their feelings to you. This will help in both the ways.
- In fact, there are no global standards of attitudes. Different people may have different attitudes.
- The world is a smart world today, being smart enough to cope up with the modern world will help parents to be equal with the younger generations.
- Know that the age of your kids is more than a number. As they grow on passing through ages, their thinking pattern changes; the way they look at the world change; the way they express feelings change.
- Never make your child feeling ashamed of the parents. If he expresses his desires on the look or behavior or his/her parents, be ready to change for him/her, but of course reasonably.
The family breaks and disintegrates. Though in India, we are yet in initial stages but the gaps has started appearing and will wider day by day, if the optimistic efforts are not put into bridge them. Hence the need of the hour is to sit and find a commons affecting both the generations.