How to Communicate Effectively with Teenagers
What Is Adolescence?
“Adolescence is unlike any other period in life. Above all, it is a time of transformation. It is not a single event, but a number of major changes coming within a relatively short period. These changes turn nice little children into intimidating adolescents.” “Get out of my life, but first could you drive me and Cheryl to the Mall?” By: Anthony E. Wolf, Ph.D.
The two main factors that shape teenagers are:
- The onset of sexuality
- Turning away from childhood and parents
The difference between teenage boys and teenage girls…
Characteristics are the following…
- spending a lot of time away from home
- at home, spending a lot of time locked in their room with the radio on
- very private- they do not like to talk to their parents (they especially avoid their mothers)- a lot of this has to do with their newly discovered sexual feelings which they wish to keep separate from their parents
- typically (though not with everyone) boys do not engage in yelling matches with their parents- when they do, it’s usually very emotional and at times physical
- boys become very good at doing nothing when they are home…it is not uncommon for them to spend all of their time either sleeping, listening to music, lying on the couch, watching TV, etc…
- teenage boys tend to deal with their problems on their own
- socially, boys are fairly accepting of their peers
- like boys, girls also like to separate themselves from their parents; but, they do it differently. Girls fight and oppose everything (usually in a loud, shrieking voice)
- girls sneak around and can be prone to lying
- teenage girls can have a better relationship with their father than with their mother
- teenage girls are better at talking about their feelings
- they tend to be disagreeing and criticizing
- even though they fight, girls still use their parents for support and maintain more contact with their parents than teenage boys do
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