Teenage rebellion and defiance is not a new concept for us, especially for parents. Most of us correlate this with constant yelling, shoplifting, slamming doors, and coming home beyond curfew hours. Most teenagers undergo this phase. Hence, it is crucial to understand why your teen is acting this way to be able to address this issue properly fully.
Why Do Teenagers Rebel?
All teenagers go through similar phases more or less. It’s part of growing up. This similar phase usually starts with the need for independence and freedom, understanding their own identity, and testing their authority. Some of this defiance is also linked to brain developmental changes and social pressures. Here are some of the reasons why teenagers rebel:
- Brain Developmental Changes
As a person enters teenage years, a part of his or her brain called prefrontal cortex is developing. This part of the brain is a person’s judgment center and thinking cap. The prefrontal cortex is where each teenager develops his or her ideas and ideals. As the prefrontal cortex develops, it is more capable of synthesizing information into ideas – leading to more arguments and discussions.
- Identity Crisis
When children enter their adolescent years, they usually question their own identity. They typically retort to questioning themselves with their purpose in life, what they are supposed to be doing, who they really are, and more. They usually try new things in this phase to be able to find answers in the said questions. They even retort to unwanted actions as a way to establish their own identity.
Struggling for their freedom and independence may be one of the underlying reasons for teenage rebellion. As they move into their adolescence stages, they expect more space from their family, especially with their parents. This demand is normal for every teenager.
However, the rebellion starts when some parents unconsciously confuse rebellion with independence. For example, many parents do now allow their kids to hang out in malls since they are scared that their children might get into trouble. This move might eventually force your teenagers to sneak out without permission.
How Does Writing Therapy Help Rebellious Teenagers?
Writing therapy, also called journal therapy, is an approach utilized by various therapists to guide teenagers into verbalizing their feelings and emotions in written words. This exercise is usually used to open a conversation between therapists and their respective patients. Writing therapy includes creating the following:
- Humorous stories
- Short stories
- Free space journals
This kind of treatment approach usually determines the teen’s recurring problems and work through these painful feelings. By knowing what the roots of their rebellious actions are, it would be easier for the therapist to come up with strategies that can help them overcome these challenges. In addition, writing therapy also helps relieve stress and make connections between their behaviors and their feelings.
Examples Of Writing Therapy
Any teenager facing life challenges can do try writing therapy. In this therapy, they are free to express whatever they are feeling or whatever comes into their minds. Listed below are some of the examples of writing therapy:
- Write a story about your own life. It can be fictional but make sure that the character mirrors some part of you.
- Create a letter to an individual that you feel angry at. It can help you to sort out your feelings towards them.
- Write a poem that can help you express your negative emotions.
- Start a daily diary where you can confide in your feelings. This practice can help you understand yourself more by reading your past entries.
There are several other ways to address a teenagers’ rebellion. Writing therapy can be a start. Take note, however, that journaling is not enough. It may help them express their emotions privately, but some teenagers may require extra help in interpreting and taking action on their journal entries through trained therapists. Hopefully, undergoing this process may help them deviate from their rebellious acts.