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- Teenage Stereotypes
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So the teens rebel, which just proves to everyone else that their ideas of teens are right; it is a vicious cycle. These stereotypes are so common that, now teens think that they, in general, are bad. Teenager Stereotypes.
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Only available on Essays Instead, the review suggests that much of what looks like adolescent impulsivity is behavior that is often guided by the desire to learn about the world. Neuroscientists were quick to interpret what appeared to be a characteristic of the developing brain as evidence of stereotypes about adolescent risk taking. But these behaviors are not symptoms of a brain deficit. In their article, now posted online, the authors note that the brain development theory fails to take into account the implications of different kinds of risk taking.
Teens have a heightened attraction to novel and exciting experiences, known as sensation seeking, which peaks during adolescence.
But teens who exhibit that tendency alone are not necessarily more likely to suffer from health issues like substance use or gambling addiction. In fact, the authors noted that the rise in adolescent levels of the neurotransmitter dopamine, which may underlie the increased drive for sensation seeking, also supports the brain's ability to exert greater control and to learn from experience. They're also trying drugs, deciding what to wear and who to hang out with. For some youth, this leads to problems. But when you're trying things for the first time, you sometimes make mistakes.
Researchers have interpreted this as a lack of control when for most youth, it's just exploration. In other words, they don't rebel across the board, just when they think something is out of bounds--a distinction we surely want them to be able to make as adults.
One clever study showed how criticism can literally shut teens down. Researchers scanned teenagers' brains while they listened to recordings of their mothers making different types of statements, including both loaded statements criticisms and neutral statements about the weather. When the mothers criticized the teens, saying things like, "One thing that really bothers me about you is [blank]," regions of the teens' brains that process emotions specifically social and physical pain became more active.
Simultaneously, areas of the brain associated with emotion regulation and social cognition became less active.
Scientists interpret this to mean that not only do teens react with negative feelings to their mother's criticism but that their ability to regulate those feelings also deteriorates and they become less able to take the parent's perspective into account. So how do we talk with teens about difficult subjects without activating their autonomy threat? One recent study demonstrated that avoiding autonomy threat, along with appealing to teens growing sense of social justice, could inspire them to make healthy food choices--something traditional public health campaigns have been unsuccessful at.
Researchers Christopher Bryan at the University of Chicago Booth School of Business and David Yeager at the University of Texas at Austin, along with other colleagues, randomly assigned over eighth graders to one of three learning conditions:. The first group learned about the importance of healthy eating through traditional, information-based health education lessons. The second group read an article about how food companies unfairly influence people's food choices in a number of ways, e.
The following day, when students had the opportunity to select their own snacks for an ostensibly unrelated event, the group that had read about corporate manipulation chose healthier snacks than either of the other two groups. A reasonable conclusion is that in the case of the first group, teens' autonomy threat was triggered by the didactic style of teaching information. But in the second group, their desires both for autonomy and for social justice were appealed to--teens don't want to be controlled by anyone, including corporations, and they have a strong sense of fairness and justice.
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Interventions are more effective, science suggests, when they work in concert with teens' strong values. Indeed, studies show that teens collaborate more under certain conditions: where they feel their intelligence is valued, where their potential fro growth is taken into account, when they are allowed to make choices and discoveries, when they feel safe. Teens who have a secure attachment with their parents or primary caregivers also collaborate and engage more with adults and make healthier decisions.
Scientists define a secure attachment in adolescence much the same as in earlier childhood --where parents are a "secure base" for children to explore the world and master their environment. And a secure attachment in adolescence continues to confer benefits like better mental health, better social skills, fewer risky behaviors, and better coping in teens. But attachment looks different in adolescence that it does in childhood, especially in the dimension of autonomy. Teens don't need to be as physically close to their parents, but they do still need the psychological closeness and assurances of support and protection when needed.
They spend more time with their peers, away from parents, than younger children do. And they have more conflicts with their parents--though conflict itself is not a sign of a problem. Rather, some conflict is a healthy byproduct of negotiating their growing autonomy. However, how the conflict is handled matters very much: Teens do better when they are allowed to express their opinions freely respectfully, still validating and showing empathy for the other person's point of view , without being made to feel that their relationship with their parent is threatened.
Autonomy-supportive parenting is part of a secure attachment and is an approach where parents motivate teens to be collaborative. For example, the parents of a friend of mine were getting a divorce and they felt it was important for their son to go to therapy. He wasn't sure he wanted to go, though, and his parents listened to his opinion.
Then they explained why they thought therapy might be helpful Both parties had some control in the situation, and to this day, their son talks about therapy as one of the most important contributors to his mental health.
Stereotypes of Hispanic and Latino Americans in the United States - Wikipedia
But what about when making a choice isn't appropriate or isn't allowed? Marbell-Pierre wondered if allowing teens choices would fly in her home country of Ghana, where families are hierarchical and where obedience to, and respect for, elders is paramount. So she surveyed both American and Ghanaian six graders about how they and their parents handled decisions together.