Adolescent stage is a crucial turning point in a person’s life characterized by biological, psychological, and social adjustments, which give a personal identity of an adult. This stage has become wreckage to some adolescents even as others go through it successfully. The client is concerned and this is a good indication of her commitment to helping her child.
Biological, Psychological, and Social Developments during Adolescence
As children enter teenage hood, they experience some developments in their body features such as voice changes, the growth of pubic hair, development of mammary glands in ladies and muscles in boys as the growth becomes rapid (Pickhardt, 2013). Moreover, they undergo psychological adjustments as they try to understand themselves and deal with the changes they are experiencing which may be difficult like menstruation in women. During the psychological developments, children align themselves with social groups that tend to influence some of their thinking (Pickhardt, 2013). Parental involvement at this stage is significant as it may help the child navigate this stage successfully or break the child.
How to Handle an Adolescent
Several approaches can be adopted in handling an adolescent some of which may break the adolescent. Some of the helpful measures are discussed here include joint decision making between the child and the mother, the mother involved in the child’s education, discipline, and support
Joint Decision Making
Involvement of adolescents in the decision-making process enables them to develop the right personality as it shows that the parents recognize their status as maturing individuals (Lally & Valentine-French, 2017). This connection will boost the adolescent to family connection and eventually be modified after the correct pattern in decision making. When adolescents learn the critical decision-making process at the family level, they will be able to decide correctly while they are alone (Pickhardt, 2013). Families have various approaches to decision making. Some families may have the parents make the decision for the entire family, others the parents and the children will each make their own decisions while in other families decisions will be made jointly (Lally & Valentine-French, 2017). Active involvement of the adolescent in family activities will be productive of good results: the child will understand why some of the decisions are wrong, why her mother decides otherwise and this will bring harmony between them.
Parental involvement in school follow-ups of their adolescent children has been found to boost the performance and devotion of their children. During the stage, adolescents are most likely to lose their bearing on academic matters. The parent should get involved with her child’s school activities as soon as possible in lines that will encourage her child to focus instead of getting involved later when called to attend a hearing of her child’s misbehavior, disciplinary action or blame games (Lally & Valentine-French, 2017). As indicated, peer pressure plays a critical part in the adolescent’s life but the timely entry of the parent will motivate them to focus on studies and avoid negative influence.
Consistency in Discipline
Sticking to the rule from the beginning of administering discipline is very vital in discouraging the possibility of recurring disobedience. As a mother, she should take keen notice of her child’s conducts and enforce authority where necessary. Research has found that authoritative parenting helps in the improvement of academics and avoidance of delinquent behaviors among adolescents whose parents are strict (Lally & Valentine-French, 2017).
Others measures that she may be adopted include giving of praise where necessary and offer close parental support such as acceptance, warm attitude, and verbal cues (Lally & Valentine-French, 2017). During this time, she should understand that her child needs her more to get direction in life. Finally, the mother should monitor the child closely to decide or consult on which approach can be effective in her child’s situation.
Pickhardt, C. (2013). Surviving Your Child’s Adolescence: How to Understand, and Even Enjoy, the Rocky Road to Independence. New York, NY: John Wiley & Sons
Lally, M. & Valentine-French, S. (2017). Lifespan Development: A Psychological Perspective. Open Education Resource. From http://dept.clcillinois.edu/psy/LifespanDevelopment.pdf