The Great Recession could turn out to be the best thing that ever happened to teenagers.
“What we saw in the Depression was, while people who were in their twenties during the heart of the Depression really struggled throughout the rest of their lives, people in their teens experienced that period very differently and were shaped differently by it,” says Don Peck, author of “Pinched: How the Great Recession Has Narrowed Our Futures and What We Can Do About It.”
“They couldn’t be blamed for the financial struggles that their families were having; many of the biggest scars that recessions leave are psychological, so that didn’t affect teens.”
Instead, much like today, teens were called upon to pick up the slack at home and provide emotional support while both parents worked to support the family.
“They became what is now called the Greatest Generation. They were renowned for their ability to delay gratification, their civic-mindedness, their family commitment and generally for a very practical, can-do attitude,” Peck says.
“I wonder if the same thing may be happening with today’s teens,” he says.