Events that happen in an adolescent’s life can affect one of three domains; these three domains are known as ‘psychosocial’ ‘cognitive’ and ‘biophysical’. This essay will focus on the area of the cognition domain now this domain will be discussed in relation to an event that has affected my perception of the world around me, the way I feel in relation to blame and judgment and lastly the ability to learn how to be more reflective.
My perception on life changed rapidly when I was informed of a tragic accident concerning the suicide of a family friend. This caused a rapid change in the way I thought about death, grief and sadness. “David Elkind proposed that formal operational thought also leads to adolescent egocentrism (difficulty differentiating one’s own thoughts and feelings)” (Sigelman, Rider, De George-Walker, Pg 173, 2013) This has impacted the way that I look at the world having gone through this experience I now see that people’s perception can change no matter what. I guess what’s trying to be said is that everyone’s perception is different and it is changing due to the experiences that we all encountering in our everyday lives.
The judgment that came after the tragedy was phenomenal. Greg Newham will always be loved and greatly missed but never will he be forgotten. Was it my fault that he died? Greg Newham was a teacher. If I had visited him when the bell rang after school would he still be here today? I did not understand his wife’s decision to not let me go to the funeral. And because of this, because I never got to say my final goodbye it is hard to let go. Hard to move on. A book written by Temple University in the USA about seeking closure states “closure typically implies that something is finished, ended, closed. Finally you can move on” (2014). Without closure I feel that I am always judging myself. Always questioning my motives, wondering if I could have done more.
The last aspect of cognitive development that was affected by this experience was learning. It is hard to live with the knowledge that someone’s death was your fault, even if rationally you know it wasn’t. Those left behind never usually learn the reasons as to why they harm themselves and those around them. Bronfenbrenner’s view of a developing person, with his or her biological and psychological characteristics are embedded in a series of environmental systems which interact with each other and with the individual over time to influenced development. (Sigelman, Et.al, 2013), with all the developmental events that we all go through it is fair to say that the learning side of our cognitive development is always changing.
This essay was written to explain the affects of our everyday lives and how it affects our cognitive domain. With what was said from Bronfenbrenner and David Elkind it is clear to say that the choices we make today do mostly change our lives in some way/s. I never completely understood the affects from my life could change the way I see and think about everything that I do today.
Sigelman, Rider and De George-Walker, 2013, Life Span Human Development. Temple University, USA, 2014, http://www.temple.edu/tempress/chapters_1800/2136_ch1.pdf