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Friendship Times Are Changing

by Sujith

It is an interesting and though provoking article. I believe that it is no longer true that when we are small kids we don’t care about the social setup of our friends and families. It maybe true for the kids in the kindergarten or maybe lower primary classes. But it’s fast becoming difficult for poor people to hide their inadequacies from the eyes of children and that is mainly because we are into the gadget-age.

Gadgets are the new signs of wealth. They have added to the earlier ones like Car and Designer Outfits and Shoes. Nowadays it’s easy to flaunt one’s wealth whether on purpose or not. Consider the iPod, the mobile handsets, the notebook computers, the blue-tooth earphones, the gaming devices and so on and on.

Earlier, the kids took time to understand the basic equations of wealth and parents were able to stretch this period with not much of effort and expense. Today, the kids start asking the questions all too soon because it is so very easy for them to compare. Questions like "He has iPod, I don’t", "She has the 12 Mega Pixel Camera on her cell phone, I don’t even have a camera on mine" and so on.

So what do you do as a parent? You can go for replicas and so called made-in-china gadgets with limited success. My point is, it’s likely that a poor kid will start having inferiority complexes and may feel left out of the "cooler" groups. So, will this not affect their friendships among the schoolmates and the neighborhood boys? Won’t they try to search for friends who use their kind of gadgets?. I think so, yes. Of course, some kids will stop being troubled by this differentiation and go ahead with all kinds but surely not all.

As we grow older, some of the not-so-privileged ones grow wiser and tend to accept their situation and try not to notice this too much. The rest of them, like the article says, try to avoid making friends with the wealthier kind.

And there is another dimension to this problem. I think, I know a lot strong friendships between the two extremes. One filthy rich, while the other, at the other end of the spectrum. I think, the advantage with these kinds is that there is simply no comparison to make.

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