Where do we find identity? How is our identity shaped? In whom is our identity formed?
These are pertinent questions for your middle school and high school student. And they are always asking the big identity question:
Does anyone like me?
The question for us as parents and small group leaders is: Do we have an answer for them? My friend and neighbor, Mr. Eckstrom, shared this article with me. It is powerful. Here is a blurb:
Think back to when you were in junior high. How did you know you were “cool”? A popular girl probably wrote you a note and put it in your locker or asked you to sit with her at lunch, right? There were a few eyewitnesses and it was pure joy. Do you remember back-to-school shopping? You bought the trendiest new shirts and shoes. But how did you know if your new shirt was cute? Someone told you, probably. How did you know if your new shirt was hideous? Again, someone probably told you. Or made fun of you, but luckily it was just between you and that person. Or – worst case scenario – between you and that person and their posse. Still, not life altering. That was then. This is now: Your middle schooler buys a new shirt and what’s the first thing she does? Takes a selfie (self-portrait, for those out of the loop) and posts it on Instagram. Think I’m joking?
According to Sarah Brooks, the author of this article, the teenagers she spends time with are looking for a self-worth online through “likes,” “comments,” and “shares.” And you are well like if your post or picture is liked, commented on or shared, several times. You are not liked if it is only a couple of times. It’s the quantification of identity.
This is important to think about!
source Life As of Late