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  • Writer's picturedrschwank

What’s it about identity development in adolescence?

Identity development is a major topic in adolescence. Transitions are often inspired by disequilibrium in identity. This imbalance comes with lots of confusion, feelings of depression, low mood, anxiety, and lots of peer comparison, pressure, and identification challenges.

Social Media adds another layer of complexity to the crucial stage of development. During adolescence we all struggle with self-confidence to some degree. Social Media accelerates the constant comparison and identification with others. Some countries, such as Denmark released a law for mandatory disclosure if filters or modification are done run photos, in order to prevent the spread of false realities. These false realities can cause distress in young people‘s sense of self, body image, and identity development.

The four identity statuses according to Marcia are distinguished as: foreclosure, identity diffusion, moratorium, and identity achievement.

In adolescence to early adulthood, the identity status change is most often a progressive transition from diffusion to moratorium to identity achievement.

What teachers can do:

A) As teachers, being aware of the identity developmental changes is important, in order to interpret the adolescents‘ behaviors appropriately.

B) The states of identity development can be fundamentally important in understanding the youth and provide adequate support.

C) Undergoing identity exploration is exhausting and accompanied by feelings of inadequacy, lack of belonging, searching for meaning in life, and a sense of purpose.




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