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Teen Rebellion

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Living for the now

It’s 2am on Sunday morning. You stumble into your sleeping house, trying not to wake your parents. You kick off your heels, wipe off your make-up and slide into bed. Wasn’t that just the best night of your life? Rebelling against your parents, breaking the rules, running wild with your friends. It’s all part of being a teenager, everyone would agree, right? There are some, however, that believe that mucking around and making mistakes as a teenager is wrong, that they should make the most of their youth by preparing themselves for adulthood. Getting a part time job and doing well at school is what people consider to be preparing yourself for adulthood. But where are the lessons learnt in that? Where is the room to make and learn from mistakes? By rebelling against the rules and making mistakes, teenagers are living for the now and learning for the future.

It is very common for teenagers to experience a period of rebellion. Normal rebellious behaviour develops over time, beginning with a teen wanting to hang out with friends more and disagreeing with parents more frequently. Society stamps a "bad teen" label on rebellious teens. However these teenagers are not always bad people. To understand why teenagers rebel, you have to look past society's label and into the backgrounds and mental thoughts of teenagers. Different experiences in life can cause individual teens to react differently and possibly result in rebellion.

Parents that are extremely strict are one of the main causes of rebellion. All teenagers, sometime in their life, feel like their parents have them on a leash and won’t give the freedom for them to do the things they want to do. Parents are only being strict to shield their child from bad situations and influences, but without experience from these situations, teenagers will never learn the lessons for themselves. It’s like a physics teacher trying to teach a class about gravity. Majority of the class will not learn the concepts by just listening to the teacher talk, weather they’re paying attention or not. The students would need to experience it for themselves to fully understand the concept, through a hands-on activity or investigation. By experiencing things first-hand, teenagers can fully learn the consequences of their actions.

Every teen wants to find identity and freedom. Parents are trying to keep their teenager from growing up too quickly. Teens can’t understand why their parents will not let them go to parties and hang out with the more popular teenagers. This causes teens to rebel because of the anger they feel emotionally towards their parents for not letting them do what they want to do or being too strict. Teenage rebellion can stem from nosey parents invading their teens' privacy and personal life. Everyone deserves and has to have privacy to a certain extent. When teens discover their parents invading their privacy, the teen might develop an intense aggression towards their parents. The majority of teenagers believe that parents should never read their personal diary or journal, where they have written their most personal secrets, feelings, and thoughts.

Rebellion is seen quite often in teens that have been through an emotional ordeal like rape, verbal or sexual abuse. This kind of emotional trauma can cause teens to blame themselves for what happened and cause deep-seated feelings of anger and shame. Rebellion can occur when a teen feels there is no one they can trust or talk to.

Teenage rebellion can be the result of psychological injury from a parent's divorce. So often, teens feel like their parent's divorce was their fault. While dealing with a divorce, teens not only sometimes blame themselves, but they become psychologically confused and full of anger. The anger teens feel toward their parents causes them to rebel and despise one of both of their parents for tearing the family apart. In severe cases, the teen's once love-bonded relationship with a parent is destroyed.

Just like divorce, remarriage can sometimes be difficult for a teen to accept. A teen can develop anger towards one or both of their parents if the teen is not already enraged from the divorce early on. Teens sometimes find it very difficult to accept the members of their stepfamily as their own family. In this situation, rebellion makes it harder for the new family members to develop a close bond.

Rebellion of teenagers caused by the parent's divorce and/or remarriage is very similar to teenage rebellion caused by living in an unstable household. Most teens can not deal with the emotional turmoil from their parents' unfaithful relationship. It can also be extremely difficult for to live in a household where verbal or physical fighting occur. This kind of household environment can cause depression, as well as rebellion. Parents need to spend time with their teen and help them through the hard times during adolescence.

Death of a loved one is difficult for anyone to deal with, especially teenagers. Rebellion from friends, family members, and society is common for teens after experiencing the loss of someone they care about. The common question that repeatedly runs through a young teenager's mind is "why." Teens are not able to understand why something so tragic happened to them. Rebellion ends up being the remedy for teens to deal with emotional heartache and search for the answers they need.

The effects of rebellion can range from no effects at all to severe devastation for the teen and/or the teen's parents. Rebellion can destroy a teen's self worth. This can affect them for their entire life. Teens begin with downgrading themselves. They can end up depressed and possibly attempt suicide to solve their problems.

Most teens go through a stage of rebellion and get into different kinds of trouble as the result. Trouble can be something severe as breaking the law to minor things like disobeying their parents. Many parents are concerned and worried about their teen when they rebel from them. They do not want their child to end up in jail or six feet under.

Rebellion is common among today's teenagers. Parents need to take action when they see signs of rebellion. Normal rebellion is sporadic. There can be moments of sweetness, calmness, and cooperation between outbursts. Parents need to be understanding and let their teen know they are willing to just listen to their teen's ideas without making judgements. Talking is a good way to help teens think things out. On the other hand, if the rebellion is constant and intense, parents need to be willing to accept that this can be a sign of underlying emotional problems and be willing to help their teen.

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