The transition from childhood to adolescence is accompanied by an intensification of several internal developmental processes such as physical, sexual, psychosexual, and psychosocial. The book “Exploring Lifespan Development” provides a detailed analysis of the psychological and physical conditions of adolescence. During puberty, there is the rapid growth of the body and limbs, followed by the development of secondary sexual characteristics, accompanied by changes in the body’s structure and internal organs.
By the age of 15-16, adolescents have an almost adult body. This coincides with the completion of physical and sexual maturation, as well as the development of sexuality. Maturation of the body is an essential prerequisite for mental and psychosexual development. During the rapid maturation stage of puberty, specific features of the brain’s functional organization are revealed (Berk, 2018). In turn, all of these processes ensure the socialization and formation of the young person’s identity. However, the level of psychosocial maturity at this age is still far from perfect. Figuratively, an adolescent can be thought of as having the body of an adult but the head of a child. These characteristics help to understand the specifics of adolescent behavior, including various health risk behaviors.
The book also thoroughly describes the teenager’s acceptance of their sexual orientation, which becomes an additional stressor at a time of already significant physical change. Considering maximalism and non-conformism, the display of sexual orientation to others can be a severe problem, although this depends on the social environment of each adolescent individually. Based on all the factors outlined in the book, it is clear that the transition process can be difficult for adolescents, as they face many physiological and psychological changes.
Berk, L. E. (2018). Exploring Lifespan Development (4th ed.). Illinois State University Press.