Are teenage years the best or worst years of our life? Throughout high school, I've received advice to have a good time and enjoy being young. On the other hand, I've also received advice to be careful because decisions now will impact our future. So, what advice is useful?
Our teenage years can be challenging. We are going through mental and physical changes while we are faced with heartbreak, peer pressure, and low self-esteem. We are also on the verge on becoming adults, which puts a lot of pressure on us from our family. Our parents have high expectations like getting good grades, going to the right college, or getting involved in sports or other recreational activities. Expectations like these makes us feel like we have no independence. We are told to act mature, but we often feel like we are being treated like kids. If we act too mature, we get told that we are growing up too fast and need to enjoy being young. If we enjoy life too much, we are told to be more responsible and to grow up. On top of that, our generation is often told that so much of our life is ruined because of social media. All of this can make us feel like we are not heard and not taken seriously.
However, our teenage years can be enjoyable. Since we don't have to work full time yet, we have a lot of time and not a lot of responsibilities. Free time allows us to spend time with our friends and create memories. We also can start dating around to see what we want in a significant other. Unlike adults, we get the summers off! We can spend this time driving, working to get some extra cash, or getting involved in sports or clubs. Since we are doing so many things, we get to have a lot of "first time" experiences. During our teenage years, we have our first time driving a car, going to a party, working, and among other fun things that we will always remember.
Instead of wondering which advice is the most useful, take both. Our teenage years can end up being both the best and worst years of our life. Although we are going through changes and faced with all types of pressure, we are also making new relationships, friendships, and memories.