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Are young people in the US wrapped up in cotton wool?

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posted on Jul, 8 2018 @ 06:14 AM
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This is a social issue which really interests me, from reading many threads on ATS over the years to chatting with a US friend.
In the UK you can get married, have sex, join the armed forces, and drink alcohol at a bar so long as with food, a plate of fries is enough to make it legal at age 16.
I left home at 16 living and working independently, there was nothing my parents could do to stop me.
My son started drinking with me when he was 16 (with a plate of fries), and even had his first after hours 'lock-in' with me, the window shutters come down and ashtrays appear on the bar - a right of passage he speaks fondly about as one of our memories.

There is a nightclub I won't go drinking in now because all the underage youngsters go there even as young as 15 with their fake ID bought off the internet. The cops turn a blind eye and one told me once they prefer the youngsters to be in a safe controlled environment than being vulnerable drinking or doing drugs in the park or a secluded beach. Plenty of 15/16/17 year old gold-diggers in that club, they exploit the stupid older men for drinks, coc aine, and money.
My (successful early twenties) son was drinking there aged 15 with his fake ID, he loved pulling old cougars, said the sex was much better than girls his own age.

So compared with the US from stuff I read you call 17 year olds 'kids' but we call them young people. You can't drink until 21, can't have sex until 18, it just seems strange to me. I knew my own mind at 16 living hundreds of miles away independently from my family, I was no 'kid', and neither was my own son once he reached 16. He has been renting his own small house since he was 19, he couldn't wait to move out lol.

I was looking at teenage pregnancy rates and the US comes top with Britain in 3rd place, and it surprised me considering the underage drinking and drug use in the UK. I had actually expected the US to be lower than us considering how you wrap your young people up in cotton wool and call them kids. Source
Young people in the UK seem much more streetwise than young people in the US, but that is just my opinion of course.
All thoughts welcome

edit on 8-7-2018 by CornishCeltGuy because: clarity




posted on Jul, 8 2018 @ 06:20 AM
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a reply to: CornishCeltGuy

the United States is a nation of laws: badly written and randomly enforced
Frank Zappa
----

that about covers it for me.

a lot of stupidity in this country when it comes to laws and regulations.



posted on Jul, 8 2018 @ 06:23 AM
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a reply to: CornishCeltGuy

9 million sq kilometers of land, kids want to get away and drink or have sex no law or parent will stop it. Bonfire parties way away from anywhere... you get drunk find a partner and knock boots.

Also when you look at all that land, many many towns are small with nothing to do, so once again drinking and sex and drugs.

lastly my parents were weird, they told me and my friends if your going to drink get your stuff come here turn over your keys and get drunk in the backyard.
I also got my first taste of beer when I was old enough to go to the fridge and get my dad a cold one, I honestly think that's what kept me from going to over board. No mystery, no rebelling over booze, my parents accepted I would do it and preferred to allow me to do it in a safe environment.

Edit to Add: My Mom was a registered nurse, so I got the talk and the threat that if she was a grand mother before I graduated high school I would lose important bits.
edit on 8-7-2018 by Irishhaf because: (no reason given)



posted on Jul, 8 2018 @ 06:26 AM
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a reply to: TinySickTears

It seems more chilled here for sure.
When my son was 15 he got caught with cannabis because he was the stupid twit carrying the bong at the beach one night. The police just confiscated it (for themselves probably) and took him home so his mother would give him a roasting lol, no official caution, no record etc.
His wild youth days never harmed him, he's more successful than me these days, certainly earning more money than me.



posted on Jul, 8 2018 @ 06:30 AM
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a reply to: Irishhaf

Ah your parents were sensible

I did the same with my son, safe environment, better than some secluded shady beach.
I always had an open policy about being truthful, and when he told me he was doing some legal highs I wanted to know what the effect was so we did it together at home. I managed to convince him to not do them and stick to MDMA which has been researched for many years now. He rarely does anything these days as he plays first team rugby for our town and is more concerned about his health and fitness.

EDIT
Just seen your edit...hahaha!
edit on 8-7-2018 by CornishCeltGuy because: (no reason given)



posted on Jul, 8 2018 @ 06:33 AM
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It really depends on where you're from in the US. Being born and raised in Detroit Michigan taught me at an early age to be self dependent, self aware, and appreciative of every blessing and dinner plate. I owned my first house at 17, paid all my own bills, took care of my mother, and stayed busy.

The problem in my opinion lies in the sheltered mentality of many households here. Kids are protected and cared for too long to learn about self reliance and the real world. An example being kids living with their parents and having their cars and expenses paid for past the age of 18, which is the standard age of adulthood here. Moral of the story, too many hand outs and not enough hands in.

Cheers!
-StS



posted on Jul, 8 2018 @ 06:38 AM
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originally posted by: CornishCeltGuy
a reply to: TinySickTears

It seems more chilled here for sure.
When my son was 15 he got caught with cannabis because he was the stupid twit carrying the bong at the beach one night. The police just confiscated it (for themselves probably) and took him home so his mother would give him a roasting lol, no official caution, no record etc.
His wild youth days never harmed him, he's more successful than me these days, certainly earning more money than me.


here the government likes to ruin lives.
get caught with a little smoke here and you have to deal with all kinds of bull#

it is called growing up. maybe even making some mistakes. it happens and people do not deserve to have their lives ruined for it.

its not just with smoke and things like that.

there was a thread here a few months back where this teenage girl had texted(sexted) a pic of her babylons to her boyfriend.
stupid for sure.
but they put her on the sex offender registry for that #.

way way overboard you know.

this is just another example.
# in general seems to be way overblown here.

cops tuning people up for bull# stuff. people are on board with it too.

people like to act like they never made a #ing mistake or never acted less than perfect.

we need to cut people some slack

of course i dont mean it needs to turn into a free for all. not what i am saying

but something needs to change. im sure most wont agree but its how i feel



posted on Jul, 8 2018 @ 06:41 AM
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a reply to: SurveyTheSurveyors

Interesting points

I agree, my son got his first car off us when he was 17, within a year he rolled it and got banned from driving for 8 months. I remember laughing when I told him that was the only car was getting from me and his mother...he chuckled back that he knew that already.
He's a qualified plumber these days doing well for himself, he's worked hard for it because he knew he had to.
He's worked from age 16, was a part time lifeguard while at plumbing college, fiercly independent, just like I was when I was 16. No allowance from me or his mother once he was old enough to get a part time job, earn your own money lol.



posted on Jul, 8 2018 @ 06:43 AM
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Them Mexicans have you beat. It's 12 years old for girls there. A recipe for success. The rest ? if you got the peso's it's game.

And I think their born pregnant, and have anywhere from 6-10 each. Think about that..... take all the time you need.

And yes, here in the US too where Lots of them come.
edit on 8-7-2018 by Plotus because: Viva



posted on Jul, 8 2018 @ 06:46 AM
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a reply to: CornishCeltGuy


Yea I got really lucky with my parents, they gave me and my sister every opportunity to succeed, we were to stupid to listen right off the bat.

I hope to emulate them with my kid, but that will require me moving out of the city, the way they raised me and my sister could get you arrested now a days in the wrong city.

so my goal is to move to a new home in 5-6 years so the kid gets to experience the world... not just the city he was born in.



posted on Jul, 8 2018 @ 06:48 AM
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a reply to: TinySickTears

It does seem harsh from some of the things I read on ATS.
Police are just like referees here, any fines go back to central government so there is no incentive for them to make money nicking people.
With young people especially they will try their best to avoid ruining their life for stupid mistakes. We have things called 'assisted cautions' where say a shop window has been smashed, then pay the damage, say sorry to the owner, and it's left at that.
There is also a law in the UK that after certain periods of time (depending on the conviction) you can legally say to an employer you have a clean record, and they cannot fire you for lying. Jobs involving caring for vulnerable people are excluded though, you get background checks for them.



posted on Jul, 8 2018 @ 06:54 AM
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a reply to: Irishhaf

Sounds like a good plan

Wrapping up in cotton wool is the worst thing I think any parent can do, and being so strict that your youngster is too scared to tell you stuff is also a fail. I was good cop and my son's mother was bad cop, he'd tell me everything, and I'd sugar coat it when I told his mother, and chilled her out. It was great teamwork, she knew it was the best way for us all to work together as a family.



posted on Jul, 8 2018 @ 06:58 AM
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a reply to: Plotus

Gosh 12 is way too young!
Saying that though, I was sexually active at 12, but with other 12/13 year olds lol
UK doctors will prescribe the pill to 12/13 year olds if they know they are sexually active. They can't tell the parents either if the child refuses permission, patient/doctor confidentiality over rides legal questions about their sexual activity.
Also, the government wants less teenage pregnancies so all contraceptives are free here even condoms.



posted on Jul, 8 2018 @ 07:01 AM
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originally posted by: CornishCeltGuy
a reply to: Irishhaf

Sounds like a good plan

Wrapping up in cotton wool is the worst thing I think any parent can do, and being so strict that your youngster is too scared to tell you stuff is also a fail. I was good cop and my son's mother was bad cop, he'd tell me everything, and I'd sugar coat it when I told his mother, and chilled her out. It was great teamwork, she knew it was the best way for us all to work together as a family.


i think lying to your kids is bad too

i dont mean telling your 5 year old about santa.

im talking kids that ask their parents about grass or something when they are however old. parents lie and tell them all kinds of terrible # to try and deter them from trying it.
wanting to deter your kids from that is a good thing. lying about it is bad though cause at some point they are going to get curious when they are a young teen and they will try it and realize all their parents told them about it is bull#. then they will start to question other things too or start to not trust their parents.

my daughter is 6 and just yesterday she asked my wife where babies come from. i wasnt here so my wife waited for me to get home so we could talk about how to tell our daughter.
i said just tell her.

so i told her about the penis and the vagina. how it is called sex.
she looked at me with a look on her face like its the grossest thing ever.
then dropped it like it was nothing.

i wasnt going to tell her some damn bird drops kids off or some magic happens.
why do that you know?



posted on Jul, 8 2018 @ 07:08 AM
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a reply to: TinySickTears

Haha yes!

My son knows every dirty secret about me and my life. Whenever he did something wrong I'd use a personal story of mine to explain how I understood his situation. I've never made myself out to be some holier than thou human who knows everything and never did anything wrong, and because of that our relationship has been a two way street of honesty and trust all his life.

You sound like you will have the same honest relationship and be a good parent, well done mate, I wish you the best at it, being dad is the best job I've ever had...although I don't feel like 'dad' anymore, he is bigger and harder than me now so looks out for me if we are on a night out lol.



posted on Jul, 8 2018 @ 07:11 AM
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a reply to: CornishCeltGuy

thanks man.
i just do the best i can

far from perfect. make my mistakes.
i just treat my daughter how i want to be treated. if she asks me a question i answer her truthfully
i dont want to lie to her and i want her to trust me.

she knows already that if i tell her a thing then whatever i told her is how it is.



posted on Jul, 8 2018 @ 07:24 AM
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originally posted by: TinySickTears
a reply to: CornishCeltGuy

thanks man.
i just do the best i can

far from perfect. make my mistakes.
i just treat my daughter how i want to be treated. if she asks me a question i answer her truthfully
i dont want to lie to her and i want her to trust me.

she knows already that if i tell her a thing then whatever i told her is how it is.


Exactly how I treated being a parent.
My son won a place at a selective high school, his classmates were sons of airline pilots, lawyers, surgeons etc, he was one of the poorest there lol, but all his mates loved coming round my place, I was like dad to loads of kids.
They would tell me stuff they would never dream of telling their own fathers, and I would counsel them as if they were my own.
All of them would have given up the riches for the relationship me and my son had/have.
Love can't be bought with shiny things, young people crave honest and caring relationships more than the newest iPhone.



posted on Jul, 8 2018 @ 08:54 AM
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Being "friends" with your kid can be bad too. Mom n pop let their dsughter have a boozy party in florida and one drove home drunk.....rolled the car and killed all four of them.

Anyway....you cant really compare the entire US to the UK. Ohio is 180 out from cali. Then there is the bible belt compared to the east or west coasts....and most importa....country kids are waaaaaay better than city kids.


antly reply to: CornishCeltGuy




posted on Jul, 8 2018 @ 09:07 AM
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a reply to: lakenheath24

My son is my best mate, always has been. He can be a twat and has been many times, but he's my trusted mate, the one who I know will watch my back.
I've never done the authoritarian parent thing, I grew up with that and hated it, my job has been honest teacher and mentor. And now he is bigger and harder than me I'm glad we have the relationship we enjoy now.



posted on Jul, 8 2018 @ 10:03 AM
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a reply to: CornishCeltGuy

This is a great thread!

I was the good one growing up, my sister was a hellion who loved partying. She ran away at 16, didn’t see her for at least 4 years. We were all sick with worry.

Her time away was brutal as she ended up basically being hostage to a bad dude. Lucky for her, while working she met a good man who actually paid the bad one to get out of town. She worked 3 jobs at one point to survive. Today, she is the most successful one in the family.

I know many people who were spoiled who ended up becoming addicts. They had very strict rules about how to make their beds and keeping the carpets cleaned. Yet money was thrown at them to bail them out of every situation. Recipe for disaster imo.

I’ve seen so many little kids, looked like they were 8, holding books, waiting to see the judge in court because they missed too many days of school because of their anxiety, which is mostly due to them being bullied.

Growing up is best done with balance. If kids don’t experience when they are teens they tend to go off the rails in their 20s. It’s very scary being a parent in the US now. Dealers put fentanyl in with other drugs now, and kids are dying because of it.

I know a few parents who will allow their kids to drink some beer at parties, but they are very strict about the amount, and where they are at all times. Those kids never seem to have problems. Doesn’t mean they won’t though.

My son used to smoke mj. He was ordered through court not to because of missed school. So he turned to drinking with friends. He missed school due to anxiety. Then he almost died because he drank so much at a party, I drove around town and ran through woods screaming his name when he didn’t answer his texts. I saw a police cruiser turn on their lights and I followed it. It was for my son. He had a bac of .358 and I sat in a hospital with him all night reciting his favorite childhood story from memory, and even though he was unconscious, he would squeeze my hand when I recited the story to him. 4 months later; some friend supplied him alcohol, and had my keys because my son forgot them at his house. My son had been sleeping for 2 hours when he walked past me in a trancelike State right out the door. I assumed he was meeting his girlfriend outside, but blew up his phone to verify. Long story short, cops show up son is in ambulance, hit pole with my car. 911 tapes say there were multiple people running from scene, but the others are not found despite officers searching woods for over an hour.

Drivers seat was way back indicating driver was way taller than my son. I know who was driving, but can’t prove it; and due to head injury, my son doesn’t remember anything.

So he’s done rehabs, schools specific for drug use and alcohol.

So who is right? The people who permitted small parties, or people like me, who tried so hard to keep him away from certain people and drugs?



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