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How To Teach A Teenager To Be Friends With A Bad Mood? - Society
How To Teach A Teenager To Be Friends With A Bad Mood? - Society

Video: How To Teach A Teenager To Be Friends With A Bad Mood? - Society

Video: How To Teach A Teenager To Be Friends With A Bad Mood? - Society
Video: Every teenager NEEDS to hear this! (2020) 2023, April

A 12-year-old boy who was caught by his parents drunk at the consultation. Previously, he was not seen drinking alcohol. To the question "Why did you do this?" replies: "The teacher yelled at me in the class, I was in a bad mood."

Both boring and sad

For the next consultation, a 13-year-old girl is brought in, who, according to her parents, “cuts her hands”. He takes scissors from a manicure set and inflicts numerous scratches on himself, severe and bloody. Parents accidentally noticed "scratches" on the arm near the elbow, but then it turned out that the girl's entire inner thighs were literally stripped. The traditional question "Why did you do this?" we get the answer: "It was boring …"

At the next consultation, two 15-year-old boobies who beat their classmate and filmed their "exploits" on the phone. In response to the question "Why did you do this?" I heard the answer: “There was nothing to do. The weather is bad, nowhere to go. Parents and school got it. So they decided to joke a little over Vitka (a beaten classmate). We didn't want anything bad! Just having fun …"

You can, of course, react to such cases by saying something profound like: “This is all from idleness! Nowadays, young people did not wander around the doorways, did not indulge in alcohol and did not commit any nonsense out of boredom! " It remains only to add that all as one were enrolled in some circles and dreamed of becoming astronauts …

Unfortunately, such parental-moralizing maxims do not help in any way. The problem is that each of us has a need to change our emotional state. Few people like to be bored, depressed and "sour", we all want to be happy and cheerful.

On the one hand, the social standard - to smile and demonstrate to others that “everything is fine with me” - is approved and encouraged. On the other hand, it is a matter of internal psychological and bodily well-being. It is obvious that experiencing positive emotions is much more pleasant than experiencing negative ones.

Can and not

You can purposefully change your emotional state using the skills of emotional self-regulation, which we learn as we grow up and socialize. But how does this training take place? Socialization is the "packing" of a person's natural abilities (such as emotions) into the framework of social norms. And all these rules can be conditionally divided into permissive and prohibitive.

For example, a boy may be faced with the prohibitive rule “men don't cry” from childhood. Absolutely any child can face a prohibition to openly express their emotions in public places (just recently I watched a mother on a bus literally gag a five-year-old baby who was laughing “too loudly”).

Permissive norms usually indicate in what situations, what kind of feelings and how it is permissible to express. Culture offers rituals that tell us how best to express a particular emotion (and not shock others).

How to teach a teenager to be friends with a bad mood 1
How to teach a teenager to be friends with a bad mood 1

If you come to a rock concert in strange clothes and are the most cheeky way to express your excitement, that will be fine. But it is unlikely that in such clothes and with a similar mood it would be appropriate to appear, say, at a church funeral service for a deceased relative.

It would seem that everything is clear with permissive and prohibitive norms, but there are two "pitfalls" here:

  1. It is far from complete coincidence of the diversity of human emotions and social norms in relation to them. Simply put, there are many more emotions than socially approved rituals and ways to express them. This means that a person can always face such experiences for which there are no "correct" (tested and approved by society) ways to respond.
  2. The school subject "self-regulation of emotions", alas, does not exist. We learn the skills of self-regulation of emotions in childhood not through purposeful learning, but through unconscious learning. We usually just imitate our parents by copying their ways of behaving in various emotional situations / states.

Imagine a teenager who has a "hormonal explosion", mood swings, a significant expansion of the social circle (and emotional relationships), the active formation of self-concept and self-esteem (also based on emotions).

Violent changes are taking place in all directions, including the significantly expanding range of emotional experiences. There may be first (often unrequited) love, and betrayal by friends, and disappointment in parents / teachers, and attacks of teenage depression, and much more new and unexpected

The methods of changing one's emotional state learned in childhood no longer work. Previously, if it was sad and scary, it was enough to go up to mom, hug her tightly and hear a few kind and comforting words from her. “But now I'm an adult! Am I some kind of mama's boy to complain? Yes, they, adults, will not understand anything. Or even worse - they will swear and only make it worse,”- this is how the teenagers reason.

Adult imitation and children's subculture

The adolescents are forced to solve the problem of changing their emotional state from “minus” to “plus” on their own, alone. And usually only two strategies are available to them:

  • repeat what their parents do;
  • use the methods of emotional self-regulation accepted (permitted by social norms) in the children's subculture.

For example, alcoholism is a systemic family disease. This means that if a parent uses alcohol as a "stress medicine" (even if it is moderate use), then the teenager will copy this very way of improving his emotional state.

He will not necessarily drink alcohol. It can also be other psychoactive substances. The main thing is that the general principle is preserved: “I myself cannot change my emotional state, chemical preparations do it for me”.

Or such an example: I had a teenager who was prone to vagrancy for a consultation. He had a kind of “bouts of melancholy and sadness,” during which he “walked wherever they looked” and was detained by the police several days later, hundreds of kilometers from home. It turned out that he was copying the behavior of his father in a hypertrophied manner, who, faced with some life troubles, “ran away” from home for several days.

His father's escapes were limited to two or three days of solitude in the garage, in the country, or in an abandoned country house. However, he did not warn anyone about his disappearance and turned off the phone. After returning, he said that he "felt better." His wife was used to this behavior, but such behavior on the part of her son became a real problem for her.

Children's subculture here is also not happy … For example, during the consultations it turned out that the girl who was scratching her hands was in a closed group in one of the social networks, where like-minded people exchanged experiences. We posted photos; gave advice on where it is better to scratch / cut yourself (so that the parents would not notice); how to get more buzz from self-harm.

For the goonies who beat up their classmate and posted the videos online, a significant part of the fun consisted of getting likes and comments from peers. Everyone admired how "cool" they were, and no one wrote a word of sympathy for their victim or a word of condemnation to the "heroes."

Anthropologists talk about the "maturation" of the children's subculture. Earlier (up to the middle of the 20th century), children's subcultures had their own ways of socializing emotions - through street / yard games, through special children's folklore. Now children are simply trying to copy (of course, in a grotesque, distorted form) adult ways of regulating emotions, alas, are not the best

What to do?

How can you help your teenager learn and start using constructive ways of emotional self-regulation? How to teach him to change his emotional state from "minus" to "plus"? Here are three basic guidelines for parents:

  1. Start with yourself.

    Are your ways to "cheer yourself up" - constructive or not? What do you do when you feel bad? Take a closer look at your child: what are your habitual actions / reactions in negative emotional situations he copies? If you have non-constructive ways to improve mood (and your child copies them), how can you change them?

  2. Know the child subculture (s) to which your child belongs, and, if possible, take part in its formation.

    For example, there are parents who regularly arrange family holidays for their child's friends, where the main thing is not food, but an exciting cultural program.

    Other parents started a club, where they initially played various kinds of games (based on Harry Potter and other books) for their children. But over time, positive reviews about their activities spread throughout the city, and the club began to exist already on a commercial basis.

    Such foci of children's subculture (even if they were originally created by adults) are usually a kind of nursery for good mood. There, children learn to change their emotional state by participating in fun activities, constructive communication with friends and like-minded people.

    To create and maintain such a hearth is a lot of work, which, nevertheless, will fully pay off in the future by the formation of emotionally mature and strong personalities.

  3. Teach your child specific psychotechnics that change the emotional state.

    There are special terms in psychology: coping strategies / skills or coping skills. They will be discussed in more detail in the next article.

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