Friday, December 08, 2006

Human Psychology: Part3 -- Teenage

Teenage - the period of life with hard feelings. This is the stage at which most of the human won’t get care and support from their family and relatives. This is prevalent at least in rural India. And I see most of the teenagers has to fight with the surroundings and relatives, just because of the age difference and the people in 20’s will consider teenagers as “don’t touchable” creatures – I mean they don’t like to interact freely. There is a psychological reason behind all of these. A person of 16 years old sometimes considered as child and in some other situations, people expect an adult’s behavior from the same person. So this generates a deep confusion in that person, he don’t really know how to manage situations.

I understand the difference in behavior and manner among boy and girl differ drastically during teenage. I mean, after teenage people set different bench marks to measure boy’s and girl’s behavior. During childhood they are evaluated from the same platform – simple criteria – that is they are child and developing. And it is a fact that, usually girls are accepted to the community fast compared to boys. There are many reasons for that, important one is; they are matured earlier than boys.

I think, in the case of girls, family and relatives are ready to accept, understand and care her, but she thinks that is not fare. And it takes some time to settle this procedure. She is needs a lot of care and support from others since she is suffering from physical changes and the accompanied mental problems.

As a boy, I personally had lot of thoughts in my teenage. Most of the time people won’t try to understand us and our feelings. And because of the age, we don’t know why they are behaving like that. I would call it a fantastic process, in which a teenager learn the situation around as a watcher, he perceives things and realize how should I interact with the person, tries some practical methods, some times they fail and finally he/she develops the skill of behavior- how to handle situations. This is the process of personality development too.

Remember that mental peace is bigger than any thing. And for a teenager a thought or feeling lasts for more time than a child. In many cases it takes much time to correct or reshape one emotion. He/she spends 40% of his/her time in thinking about this sensitive issue. I have spent time in my teenage to device how should I react tomorrow to handle some meetings- I thought of what all things I should ask, to whom etc.

It is a reality that, more of the parents don’t give mental support to a teenager. They will just set boundaries and bench marks around them, which they are not supposed to cross. I understand a great thing here: you can set boundaries, but that boundaries have to be set with the support. It has to be clear to them that, those are for their good and there is no fight among a teenager and their parents – actually parents have to make it vivid. If you could do this, sure they will behave according to your expectations. If you give support and care, they will be with you and among you. Otherwise, they will go and search for a person or team which gives this support. This support includes not only material support; most important part is mental support.

First thing that parents have to do is detecting their crossing to their teenage from childhood. This will be possible if you had a good relationship with your child in their childhood. Many things are there, that you have to be aware of and apply at this stage,

1. Interaction with your child is the first thing. Remember, even though they have entered their teenage, still you are considering them as your child. It will be like that if you are a true parent.

2. Involve them in all activities. May be in taking a common family decision, ask their open opinions, reasons for that, acknowledge them with compliments if they presented a good idea before you etc. Ask them about their future plans in their studies, their opinion about younger sister’s/brother’s future studies; ask them about your own behavior in various situations etc. Through all these you are developing a good mutual relationship your child.

3. If teenager is eldest of your children, find time to spend alone with him/her without your other children and speak and discuss serious things like, how can you mange the behaviors of other children. Ask them the approach to follow, they can tell a lot, since they really feel a lot of things like that. This will also help to feel him/her that he/she is responsible in your family like their parents. The most suitable time is at night when all other went to bed.

4. Spouses can also speak personally with the teenager about their partner. This will help them to understand he various problems in practical life, how to tackle them, how man and woman differ in their behavior and dealings etc.

5. If teenager is not the eldest, try to understand him, how the hierarchy works in a family, how their elders care them and what they are supposed to give back.

6. Allow them to correct you if they spot any misbehavior in you. There are a lot of changes that happen in each individual with age and in many cases an individual won’t monitor how ones behavior changes with time. There are many reasons for this change in behavior… with age our mind sets change a little, change in body, diseases etc matters.

7. Most of the mothers will be selfish and proud about their children and family. This is a natural feeling deriving out of maternal mind. But you have to control and understand that in many situations, these feelings prevail over your personality. We can’t blame them; they are not doing it intentionally. But a good mother should be able to realize that I have to manage her maternal feelings suitably. A teenager watches you closely.

8. Give them chances to interact and mingle among the relatives and if possible it is better if they have a close friend from your relatives itself. Teach them the behavior in relations and the boundaries that we have to keep to maintain a peaceful society. You have to restrict their mood over girl or boy friend, and teach them the setup of a family and how a sound society is build on moral values. This doesn’t mean that they should be restricted from talking to opposite sex. But give them tips on how to behave.

9. I personally feel that, teenager should spend most of the time in their family and problems related to their relatives. Teach them to comprehend how others behave, why they behaved like that etc. It will be a great loss, if they spend this time in thinking about a practical marriage life now and their partner, which they see through a girl or boy friend. There they are really selfish; they will do any thing for their friend without looking in to truth or false. Else, they have to learn how relations work, how to behave to their partners, how to tackle problems among relatives that mainly happen due to ego clashes etc. They will surely learn things from all these and try to apply them, it s natural. But for that they don’t need a intimate gf or bf. And later, when time comes, they can marry. You can even explain this strategy to them.

10. Find some time for a trip or journey to some where with your family alone. Enjoy the time, interact and understand how each one is bounded to others in your family. And in occasions where all of your relatives attend, they will realize that in these situations, time should be spent to interact with others than involving in your own family interactions. This teaches that “we have to consider others and others feelings than ours”. And later you can discuss what all things happened in that meeting, once you are back at home.

11. While eating food, try to do it in group, create situations here to discuss open topics. Parents can discuss about things they like most, future plans for the trip, parents childhood life etc. In all these you can ask their opinion and conclusion. And remember to discuss various topics, diversity keeps them interested.

There are lots more things parents can do and test at this stage. You have to find them out and apply tactically. Sure, sure, sure; that will be reflected in your child’s life, and that will be fruitful for you too. They will support and understand you in your hardships.

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