Look out; there's a Teenager!

By Sara Moore
Cole Harbour Regional high School
Dartmouth, Nova Scotia

People, mostly adults, are sure that teenagers are bad. That we're all out to shoplift, steal, and terrorize everyone in the world.

As many teens are aware, we get an unfair reputation because of the small percentage of teens that are the troublemakers. I will admit that there are teens out there that do shoplift, steal and cause trouble. Most of us are not like that at all. We care about our friends, our families, and our communities. We have jobs, we are responsible people, and we just want to get ahead in life.

When people stereotype teens as bad people, who don't care about anything except themselves, they inhibit us from getting ahead. Their lack of understanding keeps these stereotypes alive. Adults need to remember what it was like to be a teenager.

They need to remember the way they acted. I know for a fact that my mother was the president of her school her last year and I know she was a caring, loving person. I also know for a fact that she has, on occasion, said, "Ooh, look at that bunch of teenagers. They're hoodlums."

When she said this for, what seemed the like tenth thousandth time, I said something to her about it. I told her that I really didn't like it when she said stuff like that because it hurt me, as a teenager and as her daughter because I am not like that and none of my friends are like that.

I feel, as a group, teenagers need to voice their dislike of these comments, in a positive way, to adults who say them and hopefully we can change the stereotypes so that by the time our children are teenagers they won't have to put up with these stereotypes. If we can't, hopefully, we will remember what it was like to be a teenager and we will not keep those stereotypes alive by saying the same kinds of things.