Psychological health

4 Successive Freedoms That Drive Adolescent Growth

Source: Carl Pickhardt Ph.D.

freedom of choice It is the same as life for adolescents because it allows for more independent functions and the development of individual expression.

there freedom for new experience and liberation from Old self-control creates more youthful adventures and more youthful resistance that parents have to deal with.

A healthy teen continues to push for more freedom to grow, while healthy parents curb that pressure for safety and responsibility.

This fundamental conflict of interest unfolds over the course of adolescence, and parents continue to hold on faithfully while daring to let go. As growing freedom often becomes a teenage issue worth striving for and competing for, disagreements with parents tend to increase.

Freedom is expensive

What teens continue to discover, often out of their dissatisfaction, is that this increase is increasing Freedom is not free. Not only are there new costs of responsibility to be incurred, but the additional freedom also leads to more risks to manage, thus further complicating life. For example, while driving a car increases independence, doing it safely requires a lot of attention and requires following traffic rules.

Then we miss how much easier life was. This is a painful part of precocious teenager the awakening: One cannot return home to the simpler, protected, and safer world of childhood again. Thus, adolescence partially begins to lose.

While parents often miss that comfortable period, teens may also sometimes miss them. Growth requires surrender to everyone. Life becomes more and more unpredictable as limits are tested, experience is experienced, risk taken, challenges are met, resistance escalates, the unexpected happens, mistakes are made and, at times, hard lessons have to be learned. The increase in freedom makes life more difficult for the teenager, and thus for the parents as well.

Focal liberties change

Over the course of adolescence, while the need for growing freedom is constant, I believe the focus of this freedom tends to change as the developmental priorities of young people change. In short, these changing freedom priorities appear to be as follows:

  • Often the focus is on early adolescence (around age 9-13) Freedom from rejection Childhood, rebelling against the younger definition: “I want to act older now.”
  • Mostly the focus is on mid-adolescence (around 13-15 years) Freedom of Association With peers, forming a second family of friends: “I want to hang out with others my age.”
  • Late adolescence (around 15-18 years) is often focused on. Freedom with experimentation and Acting is older, trying to act more than adults: “I want to see what adult experiences look like.”
  • Emphasis is often placed on the independence of the trial (aged 18-23) freedom of liberationto become the governing authority of the individual: “I want to run my own life and be my own boss.”

Now consider each freedom in more detail.

The Four Freedoms

there Freedom from childhood rejection In the late elementary years, when a young man decides he no longer wants to be defined and treated as just a little kid: “Stop sucking me!” There is now an abandonment of youthful interests and a rejection of childish treatment by parents who may find a novice teen less welcome with affectionate hugs. In addition, he or she may become less easily compliant, more critical of less-than-ideal parents, often bored and dissatisfied, and may abandon old pastimes with parents, while the attraction to the world outside the home is increasingly expressed: “I want more of Life away from family!”

there Freedom to associate with peers Around the middle school years, when a young man decides that making a core group of buddies to join and hang out with is now a social priority: “Peer is the most important!” Now it shifts from having playmates for fun fun to joining a peer group for membership and identity. When the urgent need to belong becomes a priority, relationships can become increasingly difficult. The pressures of getting along, getting along, competing for space, and dealing with more personal meanness make relationships even more difficult to maintain: “Now being with friends is the way I want to spend my time!”

there Freedom and older acting experience Around the high school years, when a young man decides that growing up requires starting to act like this in more dangerous ways to see what it’s like to do something older, whether one enjoys doing it, whether one can safely get away with it, and to be able to say that one has Do it and to decide if it’s worth doing it again: “I want to try it!” Daring, dating, driving, sex, drug use, partying, and part-time work come to mind. Accompanied by adventurous friends for support, one in a group one would not dare to try alone: ​​“Everyone was doing it!”

there freedom of autonomy About the college years when the young man decides that from now on they should be their own governing authority: “Now I’m in charge!” And now begins to feel fully responsible for functional independence, sometimes empowering and exciting, sometimes daunting and overwhelming. Leading a solitary and independent life from parents, free from their supervision and support, it can be difficult to identify and follow the direction of the future, take care of all one’s obligations, sometimes slip and fall, struggle to keep one’s feet and find their way: “It’s hard to be my own boss!”

parental adjustment

Here, a reasonable question could be “How might the pursuit of the four freedoms affect the relationship with parents after adolescence?” Hard to say, but one can probably look for the following effects with their adult child:

  • Who rejects the old terms of childhood, Dads can be less perfect now.
  • of treating peers as a favourite, Parents could be less popular now.
  • than to risk acting more than an adult, Parents can be more vulnerable now.
  • From emancipation to autonomy, Parents can be more marginal now.

Of course, none of these transformations mean that there has been any loss of love. Just that teenage changes have some lasting power. When they change the child, they change the parent in response, thus changing the relationship between them.

And the changes never stop. Thus, most parents and adult children must redefine and adjust their relationship to keep in touch with the family as they begin to manage their adult lives separately.

Freedom: one cannot grow without it.

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