Kids’ age-old lament

Herald Sun (Aust) October 06, 2007
CHILDREN as young as nine are members of the Me Generation pushing to choose their own fashion, food and films. But parents and experts say that they are not mature enough to make such decisions and should wait at least two more years. Teens think they should make their own decisions about curfews, cigarettes and school up to three years earlier than their parents, according to research. Clothing, TV, food and movies are the most contentious issues.The RMIT survey shows teens think they should decide what TV shows they want to watch at 11 1/2, but their parents want to control the remote until they are 14 1/2. And they want to choose their own clothes from nine — while their parents say not until 11 1/2. Teens at 15 1/2 also want to choose what time they come home at night, but parents want to set curfews until their kids are past 17. Experts surveyed by the Herald Sun are siding with parents, suggesting teens should wait until 18 to drink and set curfews and 16 to choose movies.Parenting Research Centre director Warren Cann said parents and their teens clashed more often over what videos to watch rather than whether to get a mohawk. “Teens often want to do things two years before their parents — they are always pushing for more autonomy and independence,” he said. “But there are no set rules — what’s appropriate for one 13-year-old might not be right for another.” founder Michael Grose said parents should make decisions based on a young person’s capabilities.,21985,22537700-662,00.html