Adolescence is a developmental transition period between childhood and adulthood.
G.Satenley Hall – who is known for his extraordinary knowledge of shaping adolescent themes in psychology, education, and popular culture – covers adolescence; It defines it as a process that starts with puberty at the age of 12-13 and can last until the age of 22-25 at the latest.
In the early stages of adolescence, adolescents focus on changes and development in their bodies. Their rapid physical development is dominated by efforts to adapt and cope with these changes. In the ongoing process; They experience many emotional ups and downs, such as falling in love with the opposite sex, embarrassment, shyness, excessive daydreaming, uneasiness, restlessness, desire to be alone, unwillingness to work, quick excitement, euphoria, discontent, sad state, melancholy. The severity of these emotional fluctuations varies according to age groups, whether they attend school or not, the attitudes developed by their families, their social and cultural environments, the individual intelligence of adolescents and the degree of acceptance by their environment.
Adolescence is a process of liberation from childhood dependent on parents, questioning and abandonment of parents’ value systems, and a transition to adulthood. Adolescents make a few close friends during this period and often want to spend time with them. Time spent with parents decreases. In this period, the family should be understanding and change the house rules, behavior and approach towards the child according to the developmental level of the adolescent child.
In this period, the adolescent enters the process of searching for the identity he will carry throughout his life. Selected models; like athlete, singer, friend, sibling, he tries to unite on a single self and often falls into identity confusion. Because this effort is in line with the expectations of the social world rather than his own internal expectation. There is both envy and rejection towards idols and authorities. Along with the changes in her hormones, she experiences ebb and flow in many issues.
Especially children, whose basic needs in infancy are met with love, who are allowed to satisfy their curiosity in childhood, and whose foundations of self-confidence and love have been laid, spend this period more comfortably.
So, how should families approach this period?
First of all, it can be ensured that the child acquires a hobby in line with his interest. For example, it can be a sports activity that he enjoys, learning to play an instrument he is interested in, painting, sculpting and similar hobbies. In these matters, the family should support the adolescents and show interest in their hobbies and activities.
Regarding their friends and opinions, families should listen to their adolescent children and respect their different opinions. They should acknowledge that their children are growing and developing, should be calm and constructive in communication and discussion, and should not speak in a preachy manner. It should emphasize the positive and strong aspects of the individual, and the deficiencies should not be clearly underlined.
It should never be forgotten that in this period, the adolescent tries to form his individual identity and needs the acceptance and appreciation of his family. During this period, the adolescent not only needs the approval of his friends, but also wants to feel the love and trust of his family behind him.
The greatest help that can be done to the adolescent in the journey of adolescence; it means making them feel loved, noticed, important, trusted and given responsibilities.
It should not be forgotten that the healthier our approach and the stronger our communication, the easier it is to overcome the crises experienced during the transition from infancy to childhood, from adolescence to adulthood.