Teens don’t have a bad default setting

LAST week, Barnardo’s published the results of a poll that revealed that the British public agree with the statement that children are beginning to behave like animals, and the article then goes on to give evidence of why the youth of Britain is unruly and disruptive.

Of course, there are episodes that demonstrate this, the riots being one example. But this is just one act of disrespect to the country, whereas there are many more examples of good behaviour from many other teenagers, and just because the bad behaviour gets the publicity, the general public assume that that’s a teenager’s ‘default setting’.

How many teenagers do you know who fit this description? I reckon, in the whole of the Alnwick area, you could pinpoint a handful, and even then, they would be the same handful over and over.

One of the statistics that caught my eye is that 25 per cent of people consider anti-social or badly behaved children are beyond help by the age of 10. While this statistic stood out to me, that’s all it is, a statistic.

Shouldn’t children in need of help get this help, as a standard? Surely, if these services become unavailable, children will act in the way that they are expected to, and without the help, won’t be able to make these decisions, due to lack of options.

At the age of 10, do you honestly believe that children can be mature enough to learn from mistakes they haven’t yet made?

As they grow older, they will be able to make their own decisions and will be able to make themselves better people by choice, rather than by force, always a more effective way to get people to change.

If the older generation thinks that we’re not worth helping, then that’s what we will become, a reflection of their lack of confidence and respect.

Anastazja Barlow