Professor Marilyn Rye
Honors Thesis Draft 2
If a young person could glimpse into the future, what would they see? Perhaps, an illustrious life, full of riches - and happy as can be… Or possibly a life of fame and grandiosity, a revered existence… Or maybe, a modest, ordinary life with not much to celebrate. Or perchance even a more humble future potentially is in store, who knows? So many uncertainties - that is what in reality the future holds. No one can say for sure what improbabilities lie ahead. A panorama of the future can be a scary thought for any youngster.
Adolescence is a challenging time in one’s life. This period is particularly complex, as they lack that particular enlightenment needed to know their true identity. Historically, this has been a difficult phase, still today’s youth are afflicted with new challenges. While youngsters have always dealt with issues such as sexuality, drug abuse, violence and crime, today they are confronted with matters of identity crisis to a greater extent than ever before and for a longer period of time. They are lacking in self-confidence, are perplexed about moral issues and seem to have a sense of hopelessness about the future. Their minds are filled with many uncertainties; concerns regarding their self-concept, acceptance of self as well as acceptance by their peers and their outlook on their future during this critical stage. They are dealing with a series of changes and this can potentially be disturbing to a youth’s self-image.
Questions such as “Who am I” baffle their minds on a daily basis. “Am I simply that reflection I see in the mirror or is there an inner me?” “Where is this self-thing?” “Am I my thoughts, my soul, my brain?” The question of “what does it mean to be me” has perplexed the minds of many adolescents. They are expected to decide upon their life story which includes finding a job or going to college, their romantic pursuits, political