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Friendships During Adolescence: 

Friendships During Adolescence Friendship and self-esteem Friends are a significant source of who the adolescent is and what s/he is all about. Friends become mirrors of who the adolescent is and provide feedback regarding what is acceptable and what is not. Same sex friends affirm an adolescents sense of self by “being real” with one another.

Friendships During Adolescence: 

Friendships During Adolescence Adolescents can imagine themselves as other than they are with friends, rehearse new roles, set goals, and plan how to attain these ideal-self images. Adolescents with high ideal-self images are better adjusted, more reflective, do better in school, tolerate frustration better, and are more resilient to stress.

Friendships During Adolescence: 

Friendships During Adolescence How positive adolescents feel about themselves affects their relationships with others. The quality of the relationships improve, and this creates more positive feelings about self. Adolescents who feel inadequate about themselves find it difficult that others could like them.

Friendships During Adolescence: 

Friendships During Adolescence Knowing about an adolescents level of self-esteem tells us about the quality of the person’s relationships (friendships that are intimate and satisfying) with others. Social competency contributes to intimacy, promotes personal well-being, and affects the quality of friendships.

Friendships During Adolescence: 

Friendships During Adolescence Adolescents who remain close to their parents report being satisfied with themselves and have closer relationships to friends. What contributes to good relationships with parents is also relevant to relationships with friends: good social skills, sharing power, cooperating, and negotiating differences. Adolescents are happiest and the most relaxed with friends.

Changes in Friendship with Age: 

Changes in Friendship with Age Preadolescents spend time comparing themselves to others. Being accepted is a central concern so peer reactions are important sources of self-esteem and self-definition. Fear of rejection, ridicule, and jockeying for position in friendships, characterizes this age group.

Changes in Friendships with Age: 

Changes in Friendships with Age Most preadolescents mention trust as the most important issue in friendship. The characteristic mode of interaction during this age is gossiping. Gossiping discloses the attitudes and beliefs that are central to the peer group and reflect the basis for acceptance or rejection by the group.

Changes in Friendship with Age: 

Changes in Friendship with Age Gossiping affirms the norms of the group and communicates the message that they must adhere to these norms. Mutual disclosure and affirmation of group norms through gossip allows preadolescents to reaffirm their membership in the group helping to solidify their position and protecting against rejection.

Changes in Friendships with Age: 

Changes in Friendships with Age Gossip also serves another function, to allow exploration of peer attitudes (in a low risk way) in areas where they are unclear or lack norms, without actually committing to a position. Gossip often involves well known older adolescents, or popular figures such as movie stars or rock stars.

Changes in Friendships with Age: 

Changes in Friendships with Age Preadolescents are learning which emotions are appropriate for them and what rules exist for displaying these. They monitor feedback to gain information about social competence. The best guideline for expression is to avoid sentimentality, especially with friends. Be rational, cool, and in control.

Changes in Friendships with Age: 

Changes in Friendships with Age Adolescents friendships reflect different concerns which relate to who they are and what they will be in life. Friends get together to discuss what has happened each day, such as remarks of classmates, teachers, and parents. The successes and failures of the day talked about, taken apart, analyzed, and reanalyzed.

Changes in Friendships with Age: 

Changes in Friendships with Age Rather than seeing themselves to present circumstances, adolescents can think abstractly and see beyond today’s reality to tomorrow’s possibilities. Adolescents are qualified to help each other through these indecisions with genuine concern and see this as an obligation of friendship.

Changes in Friendships with Age: 

Changes in Friendships with Age When adolescents are with friends they are most likely to talk about themselves rather than gossip as preadolescents do. Self-disclosure is the primary way by which they discover themselves. Self- disclosure is the intimate sharing or exchange of thoughts, feelings, and undisclosed aspects of the self with another person. Self-disclosure takes a different form in adolescence than in preadolescence.

Changes in Friendships with Age: 

Changes in Friendships with Age Adolescents respond to self-disclosure with an honest examination of the issues. Among adolescents, disclosures are problems to be addressed and solved. Adolescents begin to master the rules of emotional display and are comfortable expressing a range of emotions but still need to refine the impact of emotions on their relationships. Many conversations are about losing control of an emotion.

Friendship Patterns: 

Friendship Patterns The major activity of girl’s friendship is talking. Boys development emotional closeness through sharing experiences, such as sports. Same-sex friendships become more intimate and affectionate with and become sources of emotional support in middle and late adolescence. The number of friends increases in adolescence and the number of friends that mothers do not know increases dramatically.

Friendship Patterns: 

Friendship Patterns Early adolescence- during this time friendships focus on activities that bring friends together. When asked what is important in a friend, early adolescent girls talk about the things they do together and focus less on personality or emotional relevance.

Friendship Patterns: 

Friendship Patterns Early adolescent boys are almost exclusively with friends of the same sex. Boys spend less time talking about feelings and more time sharing activities that will cement the friendship. Boys consistently rate their friendships as lower in intimacy than girls at this age.

Friendship Patterns: 

Friendship Patterns Middle adolescence- friendships at this time focus on security. Girls want to trust their friends. Superficial qualities disappear and emotional sharing and mutuality evolve. Personal qualities of friends become very important, with being able to confide and trust in friends not to talk behind your back or disclose secrets as most common concerns for girls. Most girls begin to date in mid-adolescence which can be a source of tension with friends.

Friendship Patterns: 

Friendship Patterns Girls experience more conflict with their friends than boys when moving to opposite sex relationships. Conflict centers around fears of disloyalty and competition. Very few girls establish close friendships with boys at this age, friendships with other girls are still more important for the majority.

Friendship Patterns: 

Friendship Patterns Anxieties about friendships peak in mid-adolescence. The most common anxieties reflect more general changes adolescents are experiencing. Midway through puberty, they are renegotiating relationships with parents, facing a larger, more impersonal school setting, and beginning to date. The emotional support of friends is important and anything that threatens that support causes anxiety.

Friendship Patterns : 

Friendship Patterns In mid-adolescence, boys are looking for friends with whom they can do something enjoyable together such as an activity. Boys want someone who is easy to get along with and who enjoys the same things that they enjoy. Boys do not disclose as much or as early as girls but they still expect a friend not to squeal on them regarding things they have done together.

Friendship Patterns: 

Friendship Patterns Late adolescence- Girls focus on personalities and intimacy continues to grow. Girls at this time, have stable identities and better social skills. They tolerate individuality in friends better than previously and accept friends for who they are.

Friendship Patterns: 

Friendship Patterns In late adolescence, boys same sex friends continue to be more important to them than friendship with girls. Differences between generations is only one of timing. The sequence happens earlier for adolescents today perhaps because of the secular trend.

Friendship Patterns: 

Friendship Patterns Peer interactions are quite similar for both sexes during adolescence. When adolescents get together, they are most likely to be with one or two of their friends. One sex difference is that boys tend to remain friends longer than girls, 4 ½ years versus 3 years. The intensity and intimacy of girls friendships may be more difficult to maintain over longer periods of time.

Friendship Patterns: 

Friendship Patterns Interethnic friendships- most friendships among adolescents are with peers of the same ethnic and cultural backgrounds. Adolescents are likely to have friends who live in the same neighborhood, go to the same school, and share other commonalities. In ethnically mixed neighborhoods, friendships are close but time spent together is not as frequent among friends who are from different ethnic groups as among friends from the same group.

Friendship Patterns: 

Friendship Patterns Several conditions are possible for friendships to form between adolescents from mixed ethnic groups, in classes where students work together in small groups, in classes where academic competition is de-emphasized, in classes where learning is the focus. The more positive adolescents feel about their own ethnic group, the more positive their attitudes toward other ethnic groups.

Friendship Patterns: 

Friendship Patterns Enculturation is the acquisition of norms of one’s ethnic group. Where acculturation is the acquisition of norms of the larger society. The norms of their group shape adolescent’s expectations and reactions to others. Mexican American adolescents stress group affiliation, interdependence, cooperation, and have a clear hierarchy in the family. The African American culture places greater emphasis on individualism and independence and allows for more egalitarian relationships within the home .

Friendship Patterns: 

Friendship Patterns Because of differing enculturation experiences, these adolescents from different ethnic backgrounds react differently to social situations. Discuss the examples on pp. 338-339 of misunderstandings that are possible between ethnic groups because of their background.

Friendship Patterns: 

Friendship Patterns Peer groups assume importance in adolescence for several reasons: peers provide needed emotional and social support while adolescents are gaining independence and autonomy; adolescents learn social skills from peers that they would not learn from parents or teachers; peers reinforce and reward each other with acceptance, popularity, and status.

The Peer Group: 

The Peer Group Types of social groups: a number of close friends in a small group is called cliques. These friendship groups are usually made up of the same sex and age friends, who are usually in the same class in school,share the same ethnic background, and live relatively close to each other. One’s best friend is usually in the same clique.

Peer Groups: 

Peer Groups Cliques are the most common type of social group. Liaisons are adolescents who are socially active and have friends in a number of cliques but so not themselves belong to the clique. These students serve to bring the groups together and create common channels of communication.

Peer Groups: 

Peer Groups Isolates are adolescents who have few friends and have few links to other adolescents in the social network. A crowd is a larger group and is more impersonal and usually numbers around 20. Not all members of a crowd are close friends but they feel relatively comfortable with each other. Several cliques can make up a crowd.

Peer Groups: 

Peer Groups The functions of cliques and crowds differ. Crowd events provide settings to try out new social skills while clique activities provide feedback about the success of those social skills. The crowd activities are events on the weekends, while clique activities are coaching sessions during the week where more skilled members use reflection and teaching to help less skilled members gain ideas about social maneuvers.

Peer Groups: 

Peer Groups An important purpose of crowds is to help adolescents move from same-sex to mixed- sex relationships.

Peer Groups: 

Peer Groups Developmental changes occur with peer groups. Belonging to groups is most important during early and middle adolescence. Late adolescents are comfortable with the opposite sex and crowds disintegrate into loosely grouped cliques and couples.

Peer Group: 

Peer Group Popularity –all crowds are not equal, some are in high regard and are prestigious. All students know what it takes to be a part of the leading crowd, for boys its being good at sports, for girls its being a social leader. Adolescents receive constant reminders at school of their status, who sits together in the cafeteria, who is allowed to cut in front of the line, who belongs to which clubs and activities. Pecking order is constantly confirmed.

Peer Group: 

Peer Group Popularity- research on popularity indicates that for boys, being good at sports and for girls being a social leader and a leader of school activities are important factors. In addition both physical attractiveness (but only at the extremes), personality characteristics such as enthusiasm, friendliness, and being comfortable with oneself relate to being popular. Academic achievement plays some part although it is hard to interpret.

Peer Group: 

Peer Group Social Competence is important for popularity. 1st component is assessing the situation to see what’s going on and adapting one’s behavior accordingly. 2nd component is responding appropriately to other’s behavior. 3rd is adopting a process approach to relationships, recognizing that relationships take time.

Peer Group: 

Peer Group Dating

Adolescents, Parents, and Peers: 

Adolescents, Parents, and Peers Conformity Values and peer pressure Deviant behavior and peer pressure The generation gap: is it widening?

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