It looks like you're using an Ad Blocker.

Please white-list or disable AboveTopSecret.com in your ad-blocking tool.

Thank you.

 

Some features of ATS will be disabled while you continue to use an ad-blocker.

 

Why Teenagers Do Stupid and Dangerous Things

page: 1
0

log in

join
share:

posted on Nov, 28 2006 @ 10:47 AM
link   
People - and scientists - have always assumed that kids do stupid things cuz they can't predict the consequences. This study shows that they can and do predict consequences - and they decide the benefits - of getting laid or taking Ecstasy - outweigh the risks. So they do it anyway.



Why Teenagers Do Stupid Things

...here’s the counterintuitive rub. It has long been assumed (and taught) that teenagers do stupid things because they can’t think very far into the future and therefore can’t fathom harm or death. But according to Reyna and Farley’s review of the scientific literature, there is no evidence for the “myth of immortality.” Indeed, they demonstrate that if anything teenagers overestimate the risks of such things as drunk driving and unprotected sex. They just do them anyway. Why? Because they have weighed the risks and weighed the benefits and made a cold calculation that the benefits outweigh the risks. That benefit may be immediate pleasure, as with drugs and sugary foods, or the emotional connectedness that comes with fitting in.

So much for teenage capriciousness. In fact, Reyna and Farley argue, as teenagers develop into adults they become more, not less, intuitive and automatic and “irrational.” In the jargon of psychology, they become “fuzzier” in their thinking, and more apt to be guided by the “gist of the matter” rather than get bogged down in a mess of details. Here is another example from Reyna and Farley: Adults don’t spend a millisecond when asked if they want to play Russian roulette: The essential gist is “possibility of catastrophe” and however remote that possibility it’s enough to make a quick and final decision. Less mature minds might calculate the number of bullets, number of chambers, probabilities, etc. Guess who makes the wiser life choice.

So what does this mean for keeping our kids alive through this perilous transition? There are some concrete public health lessons here, Reyna and Farley conclude: Supplying teenagers with yet more information or more precise information about risk is unlikely to lead to any significant change in behavior. Indeed, such interventions could backfire, since most adolescents already overestimate perils of risky behavior. So, for example, trying to teach teenagers to “drink responsibly” is probably an unwise strategy, since it plays right into their immature habit of overthinking everything. It would make more sense, in light of the new research, to enforce drinking ages and restrict teenage driving and otherwise eliminate opportunities for risk.




Ihaven't checked this guys credentials or information - but based on the kids I know - it seems right.

Comments? More info?


.

[edit on 28-11-2006 by soficrow]




posted on Nov, 28 2006 @ 10:48 AM
link   
No wisdom, which comes with age and axperience



posted on Nov, 28 2006 @ 11:06 AM
link   

Originally posted by AMANNAMEDQUEST
No wisdom, which comes with age and axperience



What is wisdom? Is it another word for intuition?

This study's findings shows that kids use reason to make their decisions, not 'intuition' as adults do. AND they consider more factors in their decision-making, plus overestimate the risks involved - but still make a reasoned decision to proceed.

Interesting, dontcha think?

.



posted on Nov, 28 2006 @ 11:59 AM
link   

Originally posted by soficrow
This study's findings shows that kids use reason to make their decisions, not 'intuition' as adults do. AND they consider more factors in their decision-making, plus overestimate the risks involved - but still make a reasoned decision to proceed.


While kids might overestimate the risks, they also overestimate their own abilities, immunity, intelligence, etc., thus convincing themselves that while there are risks, they are not as vulnerable as others.

Just ask a kid who smokes about nicotine addiction.

In my experience, they always deny their own addiction and insist that they can quit anytime. Addiction is something that happens to lesser folks than themselves.

So, while they know that bad things happen to others, it just won't happen to them.

What else would explain these behaviors:

Car Surfing

17-year-old Ashleigh E. Leezer died Saturday night while “surfing” on the hood of a car driven by a teenage friend, police said. Leezer was catapulted from the vehicle when it hit a parked vehicle about 9:30 p.m. in the 800 block of Rockwell Lane.




[edit on 2006/11/28 by GradyPhilpott]



posted on Nov, 28 2006 @ 12:04 PM
link   
"We cannot advance without new experiments in living, but no wise man tries every day what he has proved wrong the day before." - James Truslow Adams

I'd add to that in saying not only should you learn from your mistakes, but you should learn from the mistakes of those around you. Unfortunately kids like to hang out with other kids, most of whom have experienced very little in life.



posted on Nov, 28 2006 @ 12:22 PM
link   
I think, to some extent, that popular culture is to blame in some ways where acting like an idiot is somehow equated with being cool. Tv programmes such as JackAss spring to mind.

How many spotty juveniles have ended up needing hospital treatment whilst trying to emulate something they have seen on the gogglebox?



posted on Nov, 29 2006 @ 05:51 PM
link   
I believe it's because younger people more likely to get addicted, (weak will) than older persons.

Doing stupid things raises your adrenaline (a drug)....
the more adrenaline the better it makes you feel ....
but too much of a good thing is always questionable.



posted on Nov, 29 2006 @ 11:04 PM
link   

Originally posted by a1ex
I believe it's because younger people more likely to get addicted, (weak will) than older persons.


I know of no data that support this claim.



posted on Nov, 30 2006 @ 01:36 AM
link   
Well, if I had 10 dollars for all of my college buddies who insist that they aren't drunks or potheads, and yet just happen to partake in their poison of choice on a daily basis...

I think teenagers consider the consequences of their actions...and yea, they conclude that they will be unaffected, that it won't happen to them, or that they don't care.

I think most of it has to do with the social group. Yes, "peer pressure". The desire to fit in with the crowd, do what's cool, and most likely have fun while doing it. Most adults don't go around bragging about how drunk they were last night, or how much sex they had, or how they got arrested, etc...lots of teenagers do. It's because of what's socially accepted and/or encouraged within their group.

Also, I think "wisdom" does have something to do with it as well. Part of what distinguishes a mature person from an immature person, other than just biology, are their life experiences. Most teens just haven't been around long enough, or tried enough dumb things in their life, to realize what the consequences really amount to. Most don't yet have a "mature" set of values motivating what they should or shouldn't do. And some people are just plain stupid, and no matter how many times they overdose on drugs, they keep doing it.



posted on Dec, 9 2006 @ 04:21 PM
link   
When I was a teenager, I always thought far ahead into the future of choices I make even before it's ever the time to make the decision. I refrained from parties because I didn't want to be hit by a drunk driver. I always thought those were too much of a risk to go to. So basically I taught myself how to be an adult. My friends even would say that I am acting like one. I never drank alcohol and even to this day when it's legal for me to do so. Thus from these two examples, my social life was very limited. So the tests are wrong, it is possible for a teenager to make good decisions. But that doesn't apply to all of them.



posted on Dec, 9 2006 @ 05:33 PM
link   
It's because we (yeah, I'm an evil, vile teenager...boo!) feel the need to fit into certain 'groups', this causes irrational acting and plain stupidness.

Then again, I like to think I'm pretty mature, I don't get involved in much of it.



posted on Dec, 18 2006 @ 04:29 AM
link   
I have never done anything that's completely dangerous (I'm talking, life threatening - apart from smoking), but the things I have done and have suffered the consequences for, I have learnt from. It's just a part of growing up.



new topics

top topics



 
0

log in

join