Adolescents today are growing up in a totally different setting than the generation before them. New problems and choices are entering these young, and influential kids lives. There are a lot of different factors in children’s lives that weren’t as common one generation ago. Adolescents today are filled with stress due to everyday problems in their lives.
There are many factors that are playing into all of this stress put on children. One of these factors is divorce, one-parent families. Since 1960, the divorce rate has almost doubled. Almost one half of all marriages end in divorce. With this, about one quarter of all births are to unmarried women. Adolescents growing up in a single parent family are more likely to try health compromising activities, like drugs, alcohol, unprotected sex, and smoking. Also, with the separation of their parents comes a higher rate of mental illness, and dropping out of school. Worst of all is the increased suicide rate. (Losing Generations 43-49)
Children also have a lot of stress put on them at school. This is a place where children are supposed to have fun and learn basic fundamentals of life. Instead they are getting picked on and even beat up. They go through school scared, and this takes their minds off of schoolwork. Then when their grades fail, their parents punish them. The children need support and a sense of well-being. If all they know is getting made fun of and picked on, there is going to be hatred and aggression built up.
Growing Up In the Hood Is it a coincidence that highly urbanized areas are full of crime and always statistically higher than small towns and rural areas? A child that is being brought up in a metropolitan area that is full of violent crimes is flooded in a sense and has nothing to do but to breath in some of the negative influences that go on around him. Therefore, I believe that the most ...
While all these angers are building up inside of them, it lets their defenses down a little. It makes them vulnerable to peer pressure. They tend to be more daring and experimental, and they fail to think about the physical attributes that come into play. Like having unprotected sex, doing drugs, smoking, and drinking alcohol. These could have a major affect on their physical, and even mental state of being. The really sad thing is that the kids don’t even understand what they are doing to themselves. They are caught up in a world of separation, and aggression.
Adolescents with all of these problems and aggression have been known to bring on some of the most violent crimes in the country. This is a very scary scenario, as we are still in the wake of the Columbine shooting. Many children are taking out there stress by bringing guns to school; this is a major problem in our society. If kids aren’t feeling safe at school, there is something very wrong. According to our “Searching For Great Ideas” book, the homicide rate among adolescents with firearms doubled from 1985 to 1992. (23)
There is a very simple solution to these adolescent’s problems, and it’s parents. It is easy for everyone to point the finger at violent movies, video games, or television. These wouldn’t even be a factor if they had loving and caring parents to let them know what is right and what is wrong. By giving these kids attention, they begin to feel a sense of importance and reason in life. It suppresses the feeling of loneliness, and also lowers the aggression built up inside of them. This is a very simple process that really needs to be associated with parenting. Help the children with their homework, listen to their problems, and be there when they had a bad day.
“Childhood morality reflects the child’s first identifications, those that arose at a time when her sense of self and capacities to judge or decipher the world around her were still feeble” (Kaplan 123).
When you are a child, who takes care of you? Now, the cost of living is so high that many people under age twenty-five are moving back in with their parents. Young people are getting married later now than they used to. The average age for a woman to get married is about twenty-four, and for a man twenty-six. Newly married couples often postpone having children while they are establishing careers. ...
There is a problem in the way our adolescents our coming up in this generation. There are a lot more problems that weren’t even mentioned here. It is the parent’s responsibility to help through this very stressful and confusing stage in life. There is too much stress put on children, there are to many things happening in their lives. There is a major difference between the generations and many different situations that they are being put into. These children that we are putting all of this stress on are the next leaders of this country, they need to be treated well with that in mind.
Kaplan, J. Louise. Adolescence: The Farewell to Childhood. New York: Simon and
Schuster, 1984. 123.
Klein, Thomas ed., et al. Searching For Great Ideas: Readings Past and Present. United States of A: Holt, Rinehart, & Winston, 1998. 23
National Research Council. Losing Generations: Adolescents In High Risk Settings. Washington: National Academy Press, 1993. 43-49