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Technology: A Wedge or Bridge between Baby Boomer Parents and their Gen Y Children - Essay Example

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As children, they watched the horror series Chucky in Betamax format, but now, these series can be viewed online through the Internet, or bought in CD or DVD format. Technology should not be a detriment to quality family bonding. Gen Y children must teach their parents to use it, so that they can interact more with one another. …
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Technology: A Wedge or Bridge between Baby Boomer Parents and their Gen Y Children
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Technology: A Wedge or Bridge between Baby Boomer Parents and their Gen Y Children

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Baby Boomers are more open to technology than older generations, but they tend to remain traditional in how they interact with others, especially their families (Kumar & Lim, 2008, p.570). Technology has formed a generation gap, or symbolically, a technological wedge, between Baby Boomers and their Gen Y children. This problem has not been fully addressed yet because some people are taking for granted how technology negatively affects their families. These generations must find ways to bridge this gap without necessarily contradicting their interests and preferences in life. Without resolving this gap, generation clashes can result to family conflicts and unhappiness. Gen Y children and Baby Boomer parents can use technology as a bridge that can strengthen family ties through using it to develop better learning and communication strategies. Gen Y children use technology to do multitasking, while Baby Boomer parents employ technology to supplement their activities, but most of the latter prefer doing things the traditional way, and this difference in how technology is used can lead to a strong communication gap between them. Gen Y children depend on technology to do several tasks at the same time, which makes them great multitaskers (Cekada, 2012, p.41), while Baby Boomers do not like doing many things altogether (Cekada, 2012, p.43). Baby Boomers clash with their children who prefer finishing tasks their way, while the former want them to do things the way they used to. Because of these differences in how they see their responsibilities, Gen Y children may overlook that their parents do tasks in a different way, thereby making them impatient in dealing with the latter. Gen Y people tend to expect “immediate responses,” while their parents may want to talk things through, or to demand their own responses in their own time and terms (Cekada, 2012, p.42). Instead of achieving clear communication, the result is miscommunication because of conflicting communication expectations. Because of these problems, Gen Y children should not expect their parents to speak and act the way they do and the same goes for the latter, and instead, they should set aside time doing family activities that they can both enjoy to strengthen their ties. If Baby Boomers see cellular phones for calling than data services, for instance, Gen Y children can help them use smartphones, where they can maximize their data services for their communication needs (Kumar & Lim, 2008, p.570). Some might say that old dogs cannot learn new tricks, but this is not true, and one proof is that many Baby Boomers use the Internet and cellular phones more enthusiastically compared to older generations (Kumar & Lim, 2008, p.570). The main proposal is using technology to improve family relationships, in the midst of rapid technological changes and changing economic and social values. Gen Y children easily learn and interact through technology, while Baby Boomers often learn through traditional educational settings, and these differences make the latter resistant to using technology as a main part of their interactions. For Baby Boomers, experience and face-to-face interactions are sources of learning, while Gen Y tends to see technology as a dependable source of knowledge and interaction (Cekada, 2012, p.42). Gen Y children should ease on expecting their parents to see technology as a reliable source of information, when in reality, it contains false knowledge too, and it presents risks for financial ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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