We have a policy regarding teenage boys and my daughter. A strict policy of no touching (unless a life is being saved), and with good reason. Not that we can do a whole lot to enforce it, but we do pay close attention to our daughter's life. As a former teenager, and mother of three sons, I know the importance of such a policy. High school kids, girls included, bear a remarkable resemblance to hormones with legs.
Teenagers now communicate on Facebook or by text message, for the most part. The high school halls must look like one large maze of bumper cars, with kids bouncing off of one another because they're all staring at their cell phones and texting each other as they bumble along to the next class. When my generation trudged through school, we walked, talked (amazing concept), and even chewed gum simultaneously. If a guy liked a girl and wanted to ask her out, he called or just walked up to her and asked in person. Sure, the potential for serious humiliation loomed, but at least you knew if the guy could string together a sentence…if he spoke up and his nerves didn't make him twitch, drool, or stutter.
Today's dating practices differ in scary ways from when I was a teenager. My daughter got a message from a boy on Facebook not too long ago. Without so much as a polite greeting, a "kiss my butt," or anything, this kid told my daughter (in so many words) that he wanted to "touch" her. Now, a specific area(s) of the body was not specified, but I can read between the lines. Even better, he's never even talked to her, at school or anywhere else. How rude. Touch THIS, you little perv. Better yet, how would you like a foot up your…
My offended daughter, being a smart girl, denied his request. However, she's not entirely innocent of lacking etiquette when it comes to relationships. A child of the times, she broke up with a guy by text message. To add insult to injury, she did it on Christmas Eve. Another example of how our teenage years differ. The majority of us dumped our beloveds by phone or in person. We didn't take the wimp's way out and mail a letter. Well, we passed a lot of notes, but at least we knew how to hold conversations. Whether or not they were intelligent conversations was up for debate.
Some things don't change, regardless of new technology. Most teenage boys want one thing, and most teenage girls are standing on the tracks and not hearing the blaring train whistle. It's almost social regression, when you think about it. Fewer and fewer folks hand write anything, and text messages are full of acronyms and abbreviations. Formal communication is going by the wayside and caveman lingo is making a comeback.
Pretty soon we'll all be using hand signals. I'll be the one to get shot because some gang member mistakenly thinks I'm throwing him a gang sign when I'm really telling him I want fries with my burger.