Rite Of Passage Essay

1387 words - 6 pages

The transitional stage of development in humans where a juvenile grows into an adult is commonly referred to as adolescence. There are social, biological, and psychological changes during this transition. There are many dramatic changes in the human body during adolescence. At the beginning of adolescence there is a change also between primary and secondary education status and this also can create problems with peer relations in a teenager's life. In the United States, adolescence starts around 13 and ends around 19. During this stage of life, puberty sets in and there are changes in sex characteristics which take place. These are secondary sex characteristics which are a deeper voice for boys and girls develop breast and commonly have their first menstrual period. In many cultures the arrival of menstruation is seen as a rite of passage for girls, however, in the United States this is rare as girls are taught to keep their sexual development private.In the adolescent stage there is a higher chance of drug and alcohol abuse as well as disorders with mental health. Schizophrenia, anorexia, bulimia, and depression become some mental health issues that some adolescence may face. Adolescence also are known to have a lack of emotion intelligence and be unstable which can lead to crime for some youths. Adolescents are also searching for their own identities and some may challenge authority or rules given by parents and teachers in a way to establish their own individual identity. Teenagers commonly crave adulthood and search to find their own place in society. Granville Hall, a psychologist, focused his interest on childhood development. He labeled adolescence years as a phase of "Storm and Stress". The 3 aspects of the "Storm and Stress" phase are: parental conflict, disruptions in mood, and behavior that is risky. Jean Piaget, another developmental psychologist thought that this stage of development was due to an increase in cognitive abilities which can create conflict as the teenager now had the ability to reason, dispute, and theorize at the level of an adult.Physical maturation during adolescent years leads to interest in activities of the sexual nature. Many times this can lead to teenage pregnancy. Today's teens are entering puberty earlier than other generations but they are not emotionally capable of the consequences of sexual activity. In this manner early sexual activity in teens does more damage than good. Over the years, the dominant form of sex (sexual intercourse) has changed. Oral sex has taken over as the preferred method of sexual relation among the younger generation. Many teens seem to think that this is more acceptable behavior. Teens that are sexually active at a young age are also more likely to drink alcohol, smoke cigarettes and experiment with drugs.The media has had profound effects on teenage boys and girls. Girls are increasingly portrayed as thinner, and more physically fir, and the male is also thin, but muscular as...

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