The budding life of a teenager is like a paint box full of colors. These colors raw, untouched and urgently needing to be experimented with. Though *he may want to play along with them according to his own tunes, the canvas often reminds him that there are people looking at it. As a child he could have done things much easily but now there is a sense of an outer shadow hovering overhead. He may find himself battling with "if i were to be completely free, i would have...." and "if others don't like it, i would feel....". Adding to this he knows that all the attention is on him. He knows that he is the central object of everyone's view, they are looking at him, commenting on him, judging him or talking about him. So he has to cautiously weigh all his moves. Friends circle become increasingly important and it becomes a way to show people that he is independent, he can go on his own, he is mature enough. The chit-chatting with friends helps him relieve his own curiosities, new feelings with respect to the opposite sex, ideas, thoughts about what's right and wrong. He also gets a sneak peak into his friends lives and sees what they are doing with their paint boxes. He along with his group would most likely identify with a popular idol, a band or movie stars. Endless discussions about what's cool, whose body is better leads him trying to groom himself, experiment with his clothing style and feel accepted. He may secretly feel the need to talk to another adult about anything of concern because parents don't seem like the best option. The more he is away from parents, the less he is treated like a child, the less is the control on him and feels far independent when outside.
Going through he may experiment with his own paint box and sometimes along with friends. He doesn't care if there is any danger in these experiments. Even if he realizes it, he chooses to ignore them by saying "i think it will be fine.. why become scared..stay cool" or "everyone else is doing it...why not me?" thus convincing himself to do what he wants. Only when there is a risk will there be fun and then the feeling of finally have done something he wanted to. When parents try to control him, he expresses his rebellion by doing what he wants! While he sometimes craves for that love and attention from his parents he may attempt to hide these feelings to appear adult-like and mature.
As he moves through his teen years he learns that he is slowly beginning to understand what picture he was painting. Earlier as raw as it looked, it begins to take a shape, he sees the edges and boundaries. He knows what he likes more now, he begins to focus on those things. He learns to control his impulses. He thinks about his future more seriously. As the clarity in his head increases, conflict with parents decreases, decisions are made together rather than me versus you. He understands though friends are important he has his own way. Though he needs approval, its simply not like it was before. He thinks before he makes decisions. He is better at being able to sense how others may be feeling. He realizes he has a long way to go before he finishes what he intended to paint on his canvas...with hope, challenges, curiosity, enthusiasm and zest he moves towards a blooming future ahead...
*he is used in the article as a neutral pronoun for both genders.
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