Understanding children's mental health & emotional wellbeing

What is Normal (Key Stage 4)

Years 10 – 11 (Age 14-17)

As adolescence continues, group friendships become replaced by individual friendships and identity becomes more established.   Young people start to feel more at ease with their developing sense of self and a greater co-operation may again be possible as role confusion lessens.  Newly found responsibility and individual freedoms can influence this development and the young person may again start to recognize themselves as part of the family but peer relationships continue to be the predominant concern.

Growing confidence in themselves as individuals and interacting with the outside world as young adults, rather than children, brings with it a sense of self-confidence and self-image that can be empowering. Young people often feel that they alone have the right answers and can see things for what they truly are.  With this comes a deep sense of responsibility at times, not only within the immediate world of the young person but more globally.  Young people may feel the need to become involved in causes that they perceive are struggling to put things right in the world.  Conflicts can often arise over religious and political beliefs.

The need to re-establish their own boundaries can be daunting and does require a strong sense of identity and being comfortable with oneself.  This is crucial to maintaining good mental health.