Changes of Adolescence Discussion

Assessment Description

How can the many socioemotional changes of adolescence impact family systems? Respond to the question theoretically and then provide a minimum of two examples, without sharing names if they are personally known to you.

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Kail, R. V., & Cavanaugh, J. C. (2016). Human development: A life-span view (7th ed.). Belmont, CA: Thomson Wadsworth. ISBN-13: 9781305116641


Robyn Schiffer


Socioemotional development is a large part of the changes that adolescents go through.Parents are an important factor to almost all aspects of how the adolescent develops such as through finding self-esteem, understanding relationships, getting a good sense of values and beliefs, etc. (Kail & Cavanaugh,2016). Adolescents will often times start to find their independence from their parents, which may result in more conflict. During this time of developing independence, child and parent are trying to learn their new roles. While most of the arguments between parents and child are minimal, they still can be very distressing on the parents because they may feel a sense of rejection (Kail& Cavanaugh, 2016). Adolescents who also have a high self-esteem will be happy in their home environment, with fewer arguments, and feel more loved (Kail & Cavanaugh, 2016). According to research, parents who talk to their children openly about sexuality monitor their children’s behavior, and use authoritative parenting are associated with lower rates of sexual activity.When Megan was going through the changes of an adolescent, she often would pick fights with her mother or would challenge anything her mother asked. They were constantly in a state of unhappiness being around each other. She even would sneak out of the house, date guys that her mother did not approve of, and drink. This caused a lot of tension in the house especially on the youngest daughter, Emily, because she was always in the middle of their arguments or was expected to tell their mother what Megan was involved in.Kaylee was sexually active at a very young age, she was not doing it to rebel against her parents, but she also did not have a healthy relationship with them either. They often had an authoritarian approach to parenting, and did not discuss sex to her. When they did, they would point to all negative things about sex instead of having a real conversation about it. Kaylee ended up getting pregnant at sixteen. This caused a lot of additional stress on the family, she left schooling order to avoid embarrassment because her parents insisted, and had to find a job. Her and her parents continued to have a strained relationship over her decisions.


Nikolina WoodruffThere are many socioemotional changes in adolescents that impact family systems. Socioemotional describes individuals’ abilities to regulate their emotions as they interact with others. Some socioemotional changes in adolescents that are common are children becoming self-absorbed, searching for their identity, and creating illusions of invulnerability. Many children as they search for an identity wrongly believe that they are the focus of others’ thinking (Kail and Cavanaugh, 2016). This type of thinking can impact the dynamics of a family where parents may have a difficult time trying to reason with their children about their experiences or setting rules. This can also affect the dynamics between younger siblings where younger siblings see that it is okay to act or say certain things because their older sibling is doing it. This can create more problems in the house where parents may have difficulty controlling more than one child. Similarly, adolescents’ self-esteem or self-worth can affect family relationships. Parent’s opinions matter and children are more likely to view themselves more positively if their parents are affectionate and involved with them (Kail and Cavanaugh, 2016). Being interactive with children, showing you care, and having acceptable expectations help them to improve how they view themselves and most importantly how those that matter to them view them. An example of an adolescent going through socioemotional change is a girl trying to discover what social group to hang out with at school. She may decide to hang out with the “stoner” group. This may seem unusual to her parents; however, the girl is experimenting to see where she fits. Another example of socioemotional change would be a boy who has never sagged his pants before deciding to sag his pants to fit in with his new group of friends. The boy is creating more friends this way as he is seen as cool, and girls are starting to like him. This, therefore, increases his self-esteem and gives him a sense of identity.Emily YostPosted DateJan 14, 2022, 8:40 PMUnreadSocioemotional changes of adolescence can greatly impact a family system. One of the ways is through the increased independence individuals develop at this age. While in this age group, individuals begin to develop and seek out their own identity apart from their family. Since teens are becoming more independent and developing their own identities, it can cause them to want to spend less time with their family, to be less affectionate towards them, and cause them to disagree more often with family members about issues related to one’s style and freedom (Kail & Cavanaugh, 2016). Additionally, during this age, adolescents’ lives are becoming more social, and they typically begin to spend a significant amount of time with their peers. Individuals during these years not only develop more deep and meaningful relationships with their friends, but they also develop more meaningful romantic relationships (Kail & Cavanaugh, 2016). Having these types of relationships can impact a family system, in the way that adolescents may be more inclined to seek advice, emotional support, and approval from these relationships instead of relying on their family for these things. Furthermore, these relationships may also influence an adolescent to want to experiment with different behaviors that their parents may not agree with, such as smoking and drinking, which could create tension and stress within one’s family system. Lastly, during this age, adolescents may also experience intense emotions and feelings towards certain situations in their lives. This may also influence how they respond and interact with their family members as well.  An example of how socioemotional changes may impact a family system is if the adolescent begins to identify with a different culture than that of their parents. For instance, if the parents identify with values and principles from an Eastern culture, whereas the adolescent identifies more with principles of the Western culture, it may cause tension and stress within the home, since the parents may not want their child to participate in Western ways. An additional example being, if an adolescent begins dating or hanging out with a group of friends their parents do not approve of. The parents decide to no longer allow their child to hang with these friends, however, the child continues to rebel against the parents’ wishes and begins to engage in risky behavior. Due to this, it can cause tension and frustration in the home.  

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