“Teens today have an easy life” is a very common phrase. I tend to think that grownups say it because they have forgotten what it means to be a teenager. They say that teens need more discipline, more structure, more rules, more determination and more motivation. I say they need to be more resilient, because teens today have it tough and need to be able to bounce back quickly and very often. They need to bend, so they do not break.
It is easy to look at your own teenage years in retrospect, with the “creative dementia” that comes with age, and say that they were fun. People forget. We are programmed to forget the tough things in order to survive, but expecting our kids to perform where we have failed ourselves is a double standard. The reason I have not forgotten my teenage experiences was that I have been working with so many teens since then. Even if I would have forgotten naturally, they have reminded me that this period brings with it many challenges. The physical-hormonal part of adolescence is a myth that grownups have created to help them forget that the social-emotional side is where they failed.