Today’s kids reflect bad values, parents to blame


Children in the Netherlands

Last year around this time, we wrote about Dutch kids being happy because they’re egocentric and in 2007 some Dutch mothers I know justified giving up work and career by pointing out that Dutch children are the happiest in Europe. If you read these two articles, you’ll see that parents teach them to be hedonistic and not take others into consideration and that children almost rule the family. I’m not saying this is true, but where there’s smoke, there’s fire.

However, it’s terribly easy to pick on young people because they’re growing up with more choices, technology and social pressure that previous generations. Hell, the pornography and sex they are exposed to considered normal in advertising and videos (hypersexualisation) scares me as an adult. Having more choices is bad because it makes choosing more difficult. And then mom gave up working just to take care of you and dad is burning out to keep it all together for you as well. That’s a lot of guilt to handle. I’d run out and put my iPod on loud too to drown that out.

Since the 1970s in the Western world, youth have always been called greedy, selfish and whatever, so that’s nothing new. Lack of respect for authority, well, even the authority here has a lack of respect for others and themselves, saying they don’t have the power to do whatever needs to be done and police letting people go because they can’t be bothered. And why would kids obey their parents or even their teachers if their parents and the schools let them walk all over them? Why should they try any harder if there are no consequences to their actions? And we’re back to turning up the iPod really loud.

(Link:, Photo: Dutch Ministry of Foreign Affairs)


  1. dersk says:

    The ‘these kids today’ meme goes back at LEAST a millennium. That said, for ten years I’ve been looking for the right Nederlands word for ‘considerate’ – as in the adjective meaning someone who acts based on thinking about other folks – and still haven’t found one.

  2. Julian says:

    I also connected the two facts: kids happiest, youth most rotten. It would be nice to see how rotten are youngsters in other european countries as well. Just food for thought.

  3. Darth Paul says:

    Kids are stupid. That’s why they’re still kids- because they’re stupid. And that’s fine.

  4. Rogt Gaganbad says:

    Back in my day, kids would eat their rusty toe-nail borscht and not cry when they got some stuck in their throat!

    Perpetually pussy-fying or progressing? Let me reword an old article about the last generation and then I’ll let you decide!

  5. Branko Collin says:

    Damn kids sitting on your stoop again, Orangemaster? And you cannot crank up your iPod, because it is broken.

  6. Eric says:

    @dersk My “prisma handwoordenboek Engels-Nederlands” says: considerate * attent, voorkomend, vriendelijk
    But it’s noteworthy that I indeed had to look it up…

  7. Astrid says:

    @dersk well, I guess you didn’t look hard enough or maybe didn’t care enough, it’s always easier to hang on to your own beliefs ;-)

    @Eric that says more ’bout your English knowledge I guess :p

    and than for something completely different, not all kids are bad, not all parents suck, I know plenty of good kids, considerate even. when somebody starts a fire, surely there will be smoke *duh*

    all babies start as selfish, self centered little beings, that’s called survival instinct, but I agree that at some point during the process of these kids turning into adults, they must be able to think and act for themselves, and consequently assume their own responsibility therein. This is a job parents, school and the world around them also must attend to, so stop the whining and start caring ’bout (all) kids again, even the nasty ones, they weren’t born that way you know.

    Excusez my English, I’m a native Dutch. Greetz, Astrid.
    (my 2 eurocents)

  8. […] don’t get depressed, the Netherlands regularly tops the world’s happiest nations and Dutch kids are happy because they’re egocentric, major depression is on the rise: the Netherlands at the top of most depressed countries in the […]

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