Adolescence is the transition from childhood into adulthood. It mostly occurs between the ages of 12 to 19 and can take various forms. It’s also denoted to as the period of puberty where elementary physical and emotional changes take place in preparation for adulthood. Such changes include physical maturation mostly in the form of dramatic increase in height, changes in reproductive organs like growth of breasts for women and growth of beards for men, and also brain growth since the adolescent mind is considered to be 95% of the adult size and weight. During this time synaptic pruning and myelination are almost through thus the brain is in a good path to full growth.
This is a very important stage in growth since one is defined by how well he passes through it and the values he picks up to define who they are and of what purpose they serve setting a proper foundation for adulthood. One can’t fail to recognize that with such humongous change in stature then a great deal of emotional and psychological issues are involved which further complicates teenage life making it a difficult process to go through. Case in point is the teenage life of Alhakem. He is a teenager who leaves with his mother and three siblings. Apparently he has no responsibilities at home and thus has loads of time available. He is tall and not proportional in body size. He virtually lies about everything to necessitate him indulge in parties and drinking with his peers. He also avoids conversation with parents often limiting his answers to one word. He finds solace in drug abuse by gaining access to their consumption from superstores or even movie theaters. He is fond of leaving home early and getting back late and would do anything to get high including skip class or even escape “from household in the wee times of the” night. His confidence is greatly affected thus he develops a low self-esteem. The difficulties he faces during this crucial time brings to aspect what teenagers go through as they develop into early adulthood. Several philosophies have been advanced in order to explain such radical changes and how well they can be dealt with.
Alhakem suffers from identity crisis during the process of growth to early adulthood. Marcia explains different identity statuses ranging from diffusion, foreclosure and moratorium. Adolescents are egocentric feeling that they are constantly being watched. There is a need to basically want to make oneself happy but not be ridiculed by the imaginary audience therefore they shut them out by limiting conversation and lying to them. This is depicted by how he constantly lied to his parents. He thinks his experiences are unique to himself and that nobody else has ever gone through the same process. This is a great fallacy especially when he thinks bad things only happens to others and by doing bad no harm will come to him. Mercia believes that if such a stage is handled well then it can lead to early self-actualization rather than going through a long process of learning from accidents as Alhakem did.
There is also Kohlberg’s theory which identifies the different stages children pass through as they develop to adulthood. Their reasoning is based on external forces often being predisposed by what is unfolding round them. They incline to do as they contemplate is just and fair to all. They look for society’s norm mostly for moral guidance, and when such norms are not sufficient then the adolescent is at risk of developing negative traits that are detrimental to them. Alhakem engages in drugs mostly because he is influenced by peers to do so as a way of relieving stress. He feels that it’s fair to do so since he’s trying to discover oneself and get away from the glaring eyes of parents and friends. If properly guided and a stable environment is provided with good morals and virtues then such an environment can encourage better growth in teenagers and warrant a proper foundation into adulthood because teenagers will feel it’s only just to practice that.
There is also the Gilligan approach who argues that Kohlberg’s approach on justice is applicable to men but not women. Women tend to vie things on a more caring basis as a principle to alleviate global and social problems. I tend to differ with her and can use Alhakem to prove that men also tend to make such decisions their basis being care. Alhakem changes the way he lives since he cares more about his life after the accident. He interacts more with his father since he understands that being his parent then he only looks out for his own good. Furthermore, he stops abusing drugs since he feels it’s a bad way of dealing with problems rather focuses more on relationship with parents and friends as a source of good values and a better relief of problems. These changes allow him to recognize his shortcomings and therefore strive to be a better person. Therefore, Gilligan gives adolescents a simple and effective process of how to become better adults. If properly practiced then such a view can be effectively practiced to help eradicate issues that adolescents face as they mature into adulthood.