• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

Discuss research into relationships in adolescence

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

Discuss research into relationships in adolescence Some would argue that adolescence is a period of stress, such as Smith and Crawford (1960) who found that over 60% of high school students had had suicidal thoughts. Assuming that this is the case, then adolescents need emotional support, particularly from their peers and parents. However, since conflict between children and their parents is more likely to occur during adolescence (Santrock, 2001), peers may be a better alternative, since they offer social support without the commitment that comes with parents (Blos, 1967). In fact, it could be that such relationships with peers are necessary for healthy development. Supporting this view, Kirschler et al. (1991) found that those who had good peer relationships during adolescence also had good relationships in adulthood, and Steinberg and Silverberg (1986) found that the formation of peer relationships is a necessary step in breaking away from one's parents and gaining autonomy. However, this may not be entirely accurate, as it may be that parents still play an important role throughout adolescence: although adolescence may be a time of finding an identity and gaining independence, parents may still be there to offer support in times of stress (Steinberg, 1990). ...read more.

Middle

As a result, we think about ourselves and our future identities more, and as this is a new way of thinking, it may appear quite daunting at first. Research evidence supports this, for example, Coleman (1961) found that cliques in adolescence provide a sense of identity separate from one's parents, and simply being in the clique and around other similar people gives a higher sense of self-esteem. This is especially significant, as as many as 90% of adolescents identify as belonging to a peer group, as found in a study of Italian 16-18 year olds. However, in contrast with this explanation, it has been found by Dasen (1994) that only a third of adults obtain formal operational thought, so it may not be a sufficient explanation of why adolescents feel the need to gain a sense of identity. It has even been argued that adolescence is a 'creation of the 20th century' and is, in reality, not stressful at all, indicating that the reasons for developing different types of relationships are different. ...read more.

Conclusion

Conversely, conflict with parents and refuge in peers may be overexaggerated ideas. Durkin (1997) suggest that it is important to bear in mind that conflicts occur between and individuals who share a house, and that conflict is a part of social life. Discord may lead to negotiation over rights and not necessarily relationship breakdown, and this may be the phenomenon seen in adolescent relationship behaviour. In support of this, a study of adolescent girls found that most of them said that the person they felt closest to was their mother, and minor quarrels often occurred but as an attempt to change the power balance between the two rather than a separation (Apter, 1990). But, this study was carried out with a relatively small sample size of 130 people, all of whom were from the USA and Britain, so the results may not be easily generalised to other populations; but it is nevertheless a demonstration of the principle mentioned above. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our AS and A Level Developmental Psychology section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related AS and A Level Developmental Psychology essays

  1. Psychology - Stress

    The final strategy is known as self-improvement, this is where the individual is encouraged to take on and carry out challenges that they'll be able to cope with. Successful coping is a form of assertiveness training and it also helps to deal with other stressors and avoids the development of helpless-like tendencies.

  2. Task1 Counselling 1aPhysical signs and symptoms of stress

    Our emotional response to the experience - transforming experience - (preferring to think or feel) In other words we choose our approach to the task or experience by opting for 1 or 2. 1. Through experiencing the concrete, tangible, felt qualities of the world (concrete experience)

  1. Discuss research into the formation of identity in adolescence

    who found that more than 60% of secondary school students reported at least one instance of suicidal thinking, and Csikszentmihalyi* & Larson (1981), whose experiment involving 'bleeping' through pagers found mood swings of adolescents to be much more rapid than those of adults.

  2. Job stress

    Women and men reported similar amounts of conflicts. Women heading one-parent families reported conflict somewhat less often than women or men in two-parent families, parents reported more conflict than childless couples, and parents of preschoolers reported more conflicts than parents with school-age children. Secondly her age was associated with higher vulnerability to stressors. At stated by Mclean (1979)

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work