Sometimes my mother’s friends treat me like an equal. And sometimes they treat me as that great, mysterious gap that bridges our generations, the person “adult” enough to drink wine with them and “child” enough to explain their teenagers.
So today, when they glanced sidelong at me while they laughed about how their children texted their friends rather than talking to them, I simply nodded and said “yes”.
Their teenagers, they don’t have time to “hang out” nearly as often as teenagers used to. Their teenage children are bogged down by schoolwork. Their teenage children text in-between assignments and studying and everything else life wants to require from them.
And for myself, for the children of my mother’s friends, it’s compounded by our status as “military brats”. We don’t stay in one place. We don’t live near our friends. We are constantly moving, jerked around by circumstance, settling down just long enough to make a few connections, and then we are ripped away.
So yes, we text. Yes, we try to keep up with the friends we have. Yes, we spend time in virtual communication, because when you know you’ll have to start over again in two years, why even bother? Cell phones, the internet—they allow us to make and KEEP friends, rather than making some superficial, easily-forgotten relationships of convenience.
Yes, Mom and friends, your teenagers - and your adult children - text their friends. Stop thinking about the keypad, and start thinking about the communication.