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Identity Achievement Status

Paper type: Essay
Pages: 3 (746 words)
Categories: Achievement, Identity
Downloads: 28
Views: 13

Hall (1916) stated that a period of turmoil, “storm and stress” is due to biology, i.e. hormonal changes. This means that adolescents go through this period, not due to differences/changes in their lives, but because their bodies are changing rapidly and hormones are being released constantly and therefore mood swings and such are inevitable. However, Erikson (1963) believed that it is human nature to pass through a sequence of psychosocial stages.

He believed that the purpose of adolescence was to develop a strong sense of identity and finding their own person place in the adult society.

In Western societies adolescence is moratorium (negative personality outcomes) with a delay of adulthood. Although this is meant to make the transition easier, it can have the opposite effect. Without a clearly defined procedure to follow, this process can be difficult for both adolescents and their parents and can bring about a ‘generation gap’.

Erikson stated that failure to achieve identity may remain in a state of ‘identity diffusion’.

This has 4 stages:Identity Achievement Status: The adolescent has worked through their identity crisis and firm commitments have been made. They achieve a stable sense of themselves and are set up for future life as productive adults. However, research has shown the belief that Erikson made (the generation gap) to be incorrect (e.g. Lerner, Karson, Meisels, & Knapp, 1975). For example, Kandel and Lesser (1972) found that parents and their children had more similar values and attitudes than did adolescents and their friends.

Many psychologists have found that for most adolescents the views of their parents are open to discussion and negotiation. Studies conducted in several countries have found that young people get on with their parents and perceive them as the most important people in their lives. Also, adolescents who have conflicts with parents were shown to have already had poor relationships before puberty arose. These studies have a lot of validity because they have taken place in lots of countries and not just one and therefore this research can be generalised to many teenagers all over the world. This is unlike some of the other studies conducted, as they were carried out in just western countries and so only applies to adolescents that live in that region.

In non-Western cultures such as Samoa, adolescence is described as ‘the age of maximum ease’, with little or no conflict with parents. In this country the people have ‘the sunniest and easiest attitudes towards sex’. This viewpoint is also supported by research from Shostak (1981), showed that in southern Africa, young people are economically self-sufficient by mid-childhood and can marry and reproduce as soon as they have reached sexual maturity. Similary amongst the Canadian Inuit, young people were seen to be adult when they reached puberty. Girls married and became mothers in their teenage years.

Conclusion: Looking at the research I have studied, it is suggested that many different teenagers over the world are subjected to many different problems and deal with these in different ways. Some of the research did not look at non-Western countries and so an overall conclusion could not have been drawn for adolescents all over the world. In Western countries teenagers seem to have to face more problems and debates with family and themselves than in non-Western countries. This is due to the fact that in non-Western countries, as soon as sexual maturity has taken place you automatically become an adult. This is good on one hand as you are not faced with all the stress and turmoil of adolescence, but on the other hand you are not able to experiment with personalities to find out who you want to be in the future.

Therefore in conclusion to the question asked, depending on where you live in the world depends on the amount of stress and turmoil encountered as an adolescent. Adolescents in Western countries experience a lot more stress and turmoil due to changing societies and norms and the prolonged experience of being an adolescent. However, overall this is not a bad thing. As, in answer to the question ‘Must I be a Teenager at all?’, during adolescence, although it is a very stressful time, in Western countries, it is a very important time in life where you can experiment with different personalities and future options so that when you have finally found the right lifestyle for you, you will be able to concentrate on making the best out of your future, career and relationships.


Websites: http://ianr.unl.edu

Cite this essay

Identity Achievement Status. (2020, Jun 02). Retrieved from https://studymoose.com/identity-achievement-status-5203-new-essay

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