How many people go to their grandparent’s house for Thanksgiving and Christmas? How many of you actually use that time to have real conversations with them about their lives?
The sad truth is, teenagers don’t seem to really take an interest in their grandparent’s lives anymore. We’re too busy playing on our phone and checking the time to see when you have to get ready to go see your friends. Believe it or not, the elderly are really interesting. They have stories to tell that may even help you with your life as of right now.
Most kids think, “Oh, they’re old. I doubt they could tell me anything that’s relevant to me now.” But how many elderly people have been married only once and are either still with their partner or widowed? That has to mean something, right? Nowadays, divorce is a common thing, which means we’re obviously doing something wrong. Divorce back in your grandparent’s time was almost unheard of.
Women these days are usually independent with a good work ethic and college degree. Yes, that is definitely a good thing, however fewer of them cook and clean, and they also spend less time at home with their family and at work. I do not believe that all women should be little housewives that stay at home to take care of the kids while their husbands work, but I do believe that some of these older traditions are traditions for a specific reason.
Many men nowadays care more about “swag” and about being a “player” than they do about being a gentleman and respecting a woman. When was the last time you saw a guy open a girl’s car door or pull her chair out for her to sit down?
Microwavable dinners have become the norm in a lot homes, which in my opinion is sad. Back then, people cooked homemade meals and sat down at the table with their family and discussed their day. Now everyone is too busy on their phones and watching TV to eat together anymore. What happened to family bonding time over the years?
The holidays are coming up; hopefully you will spend it with your family. If your grandparents are there, take some time out of your day to ask them about their life when they were younger. Some good questions to ask would be:
- How did you grow up?
- What did you do for fun back then?
- What were dates like back then?
- How did you meet your husband/wife?
- What do you miss most about what life was like back then?
- What’s your most vivid memory?
- What was your favorite tradition from back then?
I guarantee they will feel special when you ask them questions; they will feel like you care. And at that age, they deserve to feel special.
Even go as far to try to learn something from them.
Learn their recipes and how to sew.
Learn how to treat others.
Learn old “wives tales” and their secrets.
If this generation had just a few of the traditions older generations had, then this world would be so much better.
So my challenge for you is this, over Thanksgiving and Christmas, if your still lucky enough to have your grandparents, talk to them. Listen. Learn. Take advice. I can almost guarantee you’ll learn something while making someone else feel really happy and cared about.
Kaitlyn Booker is a senior at Foley High School, who has hopes of going to college for criminal justice to be a detective or private investigator. In her free time she enjoys writing, listening to music, and hanging out with her friends. She loves writing opinion articles and hopes that she can make a difference.
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