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Teen Talk

September 22, 1996

I would like to retitle the article "Teens Are People Too--Even on Family Trips" (Sept. 1) as "Teens and Parents Are People--Even on Family Trips." The author and the "experts" she quotes seem to approach life from the idea that children and teens are the center of the universe. Don't do anything that might displease them. Make sure you only go where they will be happy. What a bunch of. . . .

I'm not advocating that parents ignore kids' needs and desires.

But Eileen Ogintz and her experts need to find a better balance. Teens can and should be expected to see the value of different experiences and should learn to value and enjoy their parents. It's part of growing up and the socialization process.

E. EISENBERGER

Lakewood

*

Regarding "Teens Are People Too," I'd like to respectfully disagree with almost the entire article! We have just returned from a 12-day Alaskan cruise with our 8- and 12-year-old daughters. Prior to the cruise, we traveled two days (by car) to get to the pier and drove two days home after we docked. The vacation was utterly splendid, and our children did not:

1. Join or participate in any children's group activities on the cruise.

2. Eat hot dogs, hamburgers, chicken fingers or ask for them once on the entire 16-day trip.

3. Complain that they did not want to be with us, wished to be with other children, missed their friends back home or were bored.

We, on the other hand, always:

1. Delighted in their company.

2. Had even more fun when they were with us, as experiences through a child's eyes are even more wonderful.

3. Plan to take another extended family vacation as soon as time and money permit!

JULIE SPIGELMAN

Agoura Hills

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