Sunday, February 24, 2013

Will Life Get Better?

My earlier post about Lifebuoy got me started thinking about another related question... will life ever get "better" for our children?

Here's what I am thinking.

When we were kids, we didn't have enough money. We didn't have choices. We didn't have PS3s, we didn't go out to the malls for shopping, we didn't eat out more than once a month or two, we didn't drive around in fancy cars. Don't take me wrong - I am not saying we weren't happy, and I am not saying money buys happiness. But in terms of quality of life, over the last 2-3 decades, we did see a huge improvement. From a Premier Padmini to an Ikon to an Endeavour, I saw the love of my life, cars, get progressively more exciting. We got mobile phones, and the Nokia 3310s soon gave way to the iPhones and the Notes. We eat in fine dining restaurants now, very, very frequently. And every year, every decade, we had more choices, more abilities, more growth. For my daughter, shopping at Marks & Spencer or Guess doesn't sound special at all. An iPad or a Mac is just another device. A trip to Switzerland would not be a life-changing event; it would be just another holiday.

So what will be "growth" for today's kids?

By giving our kids a safe, comfortable and to some extent, a spoilt life today, are we setting them up for disappointment and disaster later in life?

1 comment:

Aafreen said...

It's a dilemma I too have reflected upon. I was born in the 'intermediate period' you see; at a time when lot of new things were coming up. I saw the emergence of mobile phones, internet, cars and many home appliances.. But all that came very early into my life and I sort of naturally accepted it. I neither had the experience nor the brains to appreciate all that techonological advancement. But I got some hint of it when my dad used to tell me tales about how he struggled so hard as a student in severe financial crises with six other siblings, the time when transactions happened in 'paisas', when he got his first salary of 200 rupees! :-)

I got a much better start in life but I have noticed my parents have always tried to keep me from this 'moha-maya'.. For eg, check out this irony of my life that has become the subject of utmost ridicule: using an old iphone with intermittent 2G internet connection :P I don't have whatsapp , or hyke.. but I still have lots of friends. I have never played on a PlayStation.. (Who cares? :D) But, I often buy books online, go for shopping where there are discounts, try and bargain wherever possible, watch movies during morning shows, earn enough to eat in decent restaurants, don't shy away from giving treats when I have to :-) My folks have provided me with everything that was really necessary, even when it means I may not be able to show-off before most of my friends.. But I am happy. And I will most definitely pass this on to my kids :-)

There's really no point in letting your kids start from your 'level'..Coz there's really no level. Else we might have to teach them how to rub two stones to start a fire coz allowing them to use a match stick might spoil them! They are of course going to build their lives upon the resources you have earned, but responsible parents can always find ways to ensure the kids 'value' the silver spoons in their mouths :-)