IDENTITY FORMATION M5A1NOTES2.doc. - 1 Identity Formation...

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Identity Formation NOTES 1
CHILDHOOD TO ADULTHOOD The transition from childhood to adulthood is something most adolescents anticipate and look forward to in the United States. Independence and emotional autonomy seems to be that last transition before a young adult launches into a more independent role. In the United States, one of the first obvious rites of passages include understanding puberty and sexuality. For girls, one first step involves the start of their menstrual period, growing breasts and their bodies becoming more womanly in shape. In boys, it may start with erections, masturbation, wet dreams and fantasies involving sex. These developments are normal and mark an obvious step toward autonomy. More common U.S. rites of passages include obtaining a driver’s license, high school graduation and leaving home to attend college. “While less rooted in tradition, the 16 th birthday is nonetheless an important one for American youth, as it marks the time when they are legally permitted to drive a car (and with driving comes big-time freedom) (Pfeffer & Nunez, 2016). Often, young boys will rely on someone older such as an uncle, cousin or even a coach to teach him about life’s expectations. At various stages in during this change, young men and women will begin to solidify stronger romantic relationships. From dating to becoming engaged and eventually marriage would be the expected norm. Once married, it is common for couples to begin thinking of having children of their own. Society places an expectation on children to either attend college and enter the workforce or both. There’s a wide spectrum of individual differences with these traditions that may depict when they occur. Different cultures, religions, individual preferences, and social classes can influence these transitions. USA RITES OF PASSAGES As parents, we are typically proud of these continuous milestones; however, it can also bring about a mild sadness that the end of our responsibility as a parent is winding down. Traditionally, this change occurs around the age of eighteen. This is the age a minor in our country become a a legal adult and parents can no longer be held responsible for their actions. Young adults are now at liberty to demonstrate their independence, enjoy freedom, possibly experience different living quarters, separate from their parents, and start supporting themselves financially. CONTRAST Though the level of independence society expects from adolescents in the United States, this might differ from other cultures, as they are more apt to keep family members together. Multigenerational households can be found in countries such as Taiwan, China, Mexico, Korea, South Africa and Philippines to name a few. It would not be uncommon for people from these countries, who have come to reside in the United States to still maintain these traditions. These cultures tend to provide a continuous support to their children (Argosy University Classroom, 2016). In these cultures, unlike the U.S. traditions, family generations play an active role in

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