Being a teenager in this world is no easy task!
At this developmental stage, not only do teens have to experience hormonal changes, mood swings and changes in their physical appearance as they enter into puberty, they are also faced with the challenges of peer pressure. On top of that, the brain of a teen thinks differently to the brain of an adult. This can often lead to conflict in the parent-teen relationship as both parties struggle to understand the other.
This stage of development is also the time when teens begin to question their place in this world. They seek to answer questions like:
WHO AM I?
WHAT DO I WANT TO DO WITH MY LIFE?
WHAT DO I LIKE?
WHAT DO I NOT LIKE?
WHAT ARE MY STRENGTHS AND WEAKNESSES?
DO PEOPLE LIKE ME?
DO I LIKE MYSELF?
The teenage years represent the bridge in life from childhood to adulthood. It is a time where teens work at developing their sense of self/identity.
Teens can really benefit from a confidential space in which they feel safe. A space where they are able to share some of the challenges they are facing. A space where they can explore their sense of self. Depression is a growing concern amongst our teens. Self mutilating behaviour (e.g. cutting) and suicidal ideation (thoughts of suicide) are common amongst this age group.
If you are worried about a teen that you know, please don't ignore your senses/intuition. Get them the professional help that they need and that they may be too scared/ashamed to ask for.
"Let's put our BIG feet in their LITTLE shoes."