Grandparents and Grandkids Article
HELPING BOOMERS UNDERSTAND GRANDKIDS
(50PlusPrime) WARREN, MICHIGAN --If you have ever stared in amazement at grandchild wondering what in the world they are so upset about, you are not alone.
Sometimes their behavior is odd or even strange. Other times it is simply crazy. Today I want to discuss the common concerns that most children between the ages of 12 and 18 go through. This list is by no means exclusive and grandchild may face any combination of these issues.
Problems with friends
Friendships can also have negative effects on teens if their friends enjoy causing trouble. If your grandchild is part of a group that often gets into trouble, ask why he or she wants to be a part of this group. Your grandchild may be trying to distance himself or herself from family problems or may be rebelling against the family. Perhaps the problem will be temporary, but if serious problem behaviors (such as lying, stealing, or sneaking out of the house) occur, do not take the situation lightly.
American girls feel pressure to be thin, and unfortunately, they are selecting diets that may be hazardous to their health as their bodies go through puberty. Because of this pressure, many girls begin dieting to lose weight even when it may be unhealthy and their weight is within a normal range.
Many people believe that acne is caused by the foods they eat. This is not true. The real cause of acne is an increase of an oily substance (sebum) from the skin cells, which causes whiteheads, blackheads, and pimples. It is a natural response to hormones that are produced during puberty.
For many teens, nothing is more frustrating than acne. Most cases of acne are mild. However, for some teens, even one pimple is emotionally upsetting. Most teens are very self-conscious about pimples, and parents need to take the teen's concerns seriously.
About 3 million people under the age of 18 smoke cigarettes. In one large study, about 10% of 12th graders reported that they had used smokeless tobacco over the previous 30 days.
Since 1992, marijuana use has increased from about 12% to about 24% of all 12th graders. Recently, cocaine use has increased in all grade levels. Binge drinking has increased from about 28% in 1993 to 31% in 1997.
Drugs commonly used during the teen years
Stages of teenage substance use
Researchers have identified 3 stages of teenage substance abuse. The stages can develop slowly or rapidly. Each stage causes greater and more long-term effects on the teen's life.
(1) Trying drugs and/or alcohol
You may also be concerned that your grandchild is selling drugs. The best course of action to prevent drug and alcohol abuse in your grandchild is to become involved in your grandchild's life before a drug problem develops.
The suicide rate for teens (15 to 19 years of age) in the United States nearly doubled (from 5.9 to 11.1 per 100,000 teens) between 1970 and 1990.
In 1995, 24% of 9th through 12th grade students reported that they had seriously considered suicide during the previous year.
In 1995, 9% of 9th through 12th grade students reported that they had attempted suicide during the previous year.
Some teens may consider suicide as a result of drug or alcohol problems or for some other reason. Take suicide hints seriously. Your grandchild's life is at stake.
In 1994 the rate of teens (12 to 17 years of age) who were victims of violent crimes was 118 per 1,000. Teens (10 through 17 years old) arrested for violent crimes (murder, assault, rape, or robbery) increased between 1980 and 1996 from 334 to 465 per 100,000.
Guns are involved in most teen murders (homicides). Death from firearm homicide is the most rapidly increasing cause of death for teens between the ages of 15 and 19. Teens often carry guns to help them feel secure. However, having a gun often turns simple fistfights or assaults into murders.
Grandparents are searching for ways to keep their grandchildren safe. You can help decrease the likelihood that your grandchild will be involved in violent crimes by showing them how to deal with conflict without resorting to violence. You can also decrease their exposure to violence. Exposure to violence as a young child has a strong influence on violence during the teen years. I suggest restricting your grandchild's exposure to violence on TV shows and movies.
When teens are either victims of or exposed to violence, it significantly affects them. All teens who have been affected by violence should be evaluated for their need for counseling as soon as possible after the event. Through counseling, the teen can deal with his or her feelings and cope with the trauma.
Copyright © 2013 Maria Madeline Project, Inc. All Rights Reserved.