Teenagers' tantrums: it's all in the brain

Discussion in 'Diamond Lil's' started by Always_a_Civvy, Sep 8, 2006.

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  1. Well this put's a different complexion on things! :lol: No more complaining about youngsters fellow RumRationers please - they've got a good excuse - I always thought they had - Admiral LeFanu's assertion was that there were no bad boys only bad parents! It looks like it comes down to a bit of developmental neurology as well. 8)

    Perhaps we should raise the minimum joining age to 18 after all...

    Teenagers' tantrums: it's all in the brain
    James Randerson, science correspondent
    Guardian: September 8, 2006

    Sulky teenagers cannot help being rude or having tantrums because their brains have not yet fully developed, a leading neuroscientist said yesterday.

    Sarah-Jayne Blakemore, a cognitive neuroscientist at University College London, said that they could not help being sullen because they were still developing social skills and did not yet have the full mental hardware to see the world from someone else's point of view or predict the consequences of their actions.

    Dr Blakemore, who presented the work at the British Association festival of science yesterday, said it was questionable whether teenagers were mentally ready to be held responsible for their actions - in court, for example. "If making decisions about how you treat teenagers ... you need to take this new research into account," she said. "The brain is pre-programmed to undergo huge changes during adolescence."

    Her research shows adolescents use their brains differently for tasks which involve putting themselves in someone else's shoes. "It's not just hormones causing teenagers to be difficult. It is also the fact that their brain is developing," she said. "It does give them a bit of an excuse."

    In one study, she compared the responses of 112 adolescents and adults to questions that involved taking someone else's perspective on an event. She found that participants got quicker with age.

    Next, her team looked at what is going on in the brain by putting 11 adults and 19 adolescents under a brain scanner. They asked questions that involved the subjects working out how they would solve a problem in the future - something that demands the ability to take the perspective of their future state of mind.

    The brain activity was subtly different in the teenagers compared with the adults. The teenagers used a region at the front of the brain less and one at the back more. The latter region is involved in simply representing physical actions rather than social consequences or intentions, suggesting that the teenagers were thinking about the problem in a less sophisticated way.

  2. More excuses for bad behaviour, ADHD, etc...I'm just old fashioned i guess, a mixture of unconditional love and mutual respectful discipline, seems to work on my teenager, and a more kind and thought person you couldn't wish to meet!
  3. Couldn't agree more imom - good old fashioned values, structure and discipline and a bit less of the selfish parenting that is so common these days. Having said that we did go through a period where assuming any brain activity at all was dangerous!
  4. Always some excuse for not behaving themselves. Pity they cannot stand up and be counted sometimes!
  5. As me old mammy used to say "Take the skin off their arses"
  6. Recipe.
    take one child (or more)

    Feed it properly
    Pay it attention
    help it with homework
    read to it regularly
    spend time with it
    teach it right and wrong
    listen to it

    Leave to mature.....
  7. According to the article teenagers cannot be held fully responsible for their actions... like psychopaths! 8O

    This is actually rather interesting. Neither punishment nor treatment is an appropriate response to psychopathy. Containment is. So perhaps when teenagers misbehave, we should simply lock them in padded bedrooms, or in the case of sailors, tie them up in their duvets and secure them to their bunks! :lol:
  8. Diminished responsibilities....where have i heard that before.....
  9. They are only Psychopaths because their parents do not equip them with the ability to make moral judgements about right and wrong, if it were the case that teenagers brains are messed up, what happened for the last 10,000 years...or is this just Darwinian evolution.....Homo Chav. (rather than Sapien)
  10. Imom, I'm half joking, but only half. It's a good thing I've abandoned my criminological study of the G-Place or this study would have been excellent material to use... I might have argued that all the recruits needed was TLC, not ruff-tuff discipline, and a gentle talking to when they strayed off course... :twisted: :lol:
  11. I read with interest many of the comments above. As a parent with one child who suffers from a severe combination of Autism and ADHD I can say that it, whilst it is all in the mind (chemical unbalance, etc) it is not a case of my son being naughty, nor a reflection on my parenting skills. Some kids are just unfortunate in being born this way, some are not. Some children are bad by choice and some by the training inflicted by their parents over a prolonged period of time.

    Yes it appears that there are many more problem children in today's world but then the medical types have just become better at identifying and diagnosing them. I don't want to get into the whole tripple jab theory.

    To those of you who have children who are not as unfortunate - lucky you; but don't make disparaging "old man like" remarks about something which the majority of you know little or nothing about and thank God daily that your families have never had to experience the effects on a daily basis.

  12. Silver please don't take my comments above as a slight, there are many "real" disabilities (for the want of a better word), and my heart and respect goes out to parents who have the challenge of dealing with this day in and day out. But along with better diagnosis, has come a certain level of lazyness in using "syndromes" of all sorts and labels to excuse otherwise healthy kids, i have seen this myself. Autism and ADHD are real but cover a wide spectrum.

    The comments above are not aimed at children who obviously have significant difficulties, but those who use such things as an excuse for their actions.

    Like all parents (i have 3 kids) i've had problems, and seen children at my kid's school with ADHD etc. and it is a real tragedy. But blanket diagnosis like "teenagers can't help it because of their brains" only serves to camouflage kids with real problems, sorry if i caused offence, i didnt intend to!
  13. I saw some research once that suggested a person's brain isn't properly mature until they reach eighteen or so.

    They showed teenagers pictures of people with various expressions on their face. One that the sixteen/seventeen year olds always got wrong was fear. They interpreted it as surprise.

    However, lacking a fully functioning brain is not a defence against bad behaviour IMHO.
  14. imon - Understood and my own apologies for the rant. Some of the comments (not just yours) struck a nerve.

    I get really chinned off when I listen to people who point at my boy and tut in places like the supermarket. This often happens when he is doing a complete whirling dervish and no one steps in to help out. Instead they all stop, stare and shake their heads. How I've managed to avoid clocking one of them before now I don't know.

    It's worse for the wife because she has him to herself for six months.

  15. Mine have done that in the past too, you sometimnes just have to let them burn it out....i think it's called emotional flooding....big emotions in a small boy!!

    As long as they can't hurt themselves, screw what onlookers think and say!
  16. Sorry if I caused any offence SF.

    In fact sometimes you can be labelled as having a learning difficulty and that label is used to try to deny you a normal life. Shakey seems to know a bit about the condition I have - all the medical textbooks label all of us as being mildly mentally handicapped, suffering from infantalism and incapable of achievement! Well some of us have been to University (at our own expense) and obtained Firsts; held down a full-time job and been in the Auxiliary forces. Having a developmental disorder does not necessarily preclude a person from being capable... or taking responsibility. It depends upon the severity.

  17. SF, just curious as to what you mean by this statement. If I witness somebody having difficulty with a child, unless there is obvious abuse or anything of that nature, I walk by and do not pay any attention. My reasoning being that the situation is already stressful enough for the adult and child that the last thing that is needed is a stranger butting in. There is also the fact that the adult being stressed may shift targets. What help can someone offer?
  18. I've a degree in Psychology mate. In fact I'm a closet intellectual.
  19. I echo the apologies too SF, my children share classes with ADHD sufferers and I know the condition is only too real. My comments re selfish parenting were aimed at the parents of children within the same class who choose to forget most of the time that they have children and therefore responsibilities. Going off on a slight tangent the parent of an ADHD child asked me about the recruitment process the other day. Her son has his heart set on the Navy and she was wondering if this was going to be achievable. She knew he had to be off medication for at least 2 years first but I was unable to offer much help except put her in touch with AFCO.
  20. Well, that's much harder to do than Criminology... :lol: ...and a lot more useful! Thank's for coming out Shakey! :)

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