Adolescence: A Time of Contradictions
Guest post from Bennett Zielinski, LMCH-T
YESS Mental Health Clinician
Do you live with a teen who is moody all the time? Do you never know which version of your child is going to walk through the door after school? Have you ever asked a teen “what were you thinking?” to be met with an “I don’t know!”?
The good news is, this is normal. The bad news is, this is normal. As caregivers, you play a huge role in helping teenagers develop into a fully functioning adult. And, it can help to know why teenagers' moods can be all over the place.
Experts say that adolescence starts once a child hits puberty and ends once the prefrontal cortex, or rational thinking part of the brain, develops, which might not be until a person is age 25! However, the part of the brain that deals with emotions has already developed by the age of two. This is why teenagers are fueled by their emotions and their actions may not have any reasoning behind them.
Since teens do not have a rational thinking part of their brain yet, caregivers and other adults become that part of their brain through structure and boundaries. This process can be difficult, but there are plenty of supports that can help you (and them) navigate this important time of a child’s development.
One of the hardest things to do as a caregiver is ask for help, but it can be one of the most important as well.
If a family is struggling, it is okay to reach out.
YESS' Mental Health Clinicians work with teens and children of all ages while using knowledge of brain and child development to help families understand where behaviors stem from.
While mood swings and pushing boundaries may be normal, families do not have to figure it out by themselves. If you are interested in therapy services or would like more information, please
visit our website
or call 515-557-2256.