Age, in many ways, is arbitrary. On strictly an anecdotal basis, it’s clear that some people “age” slower or faster than others, in the sense of things like maturity, responsibility, intelligence, and even physically. We know age and experience can affect psychological development in a variety of ways, and yet in many ways psychology has lumped people together based on age in ways that could be detrimental to their emotional maturity.
That’s why, in the field of psychotherapy, there is a push for the acknowledgment of challenges faced by different age ranges all throughout a person’s lifespan, and one of the newest accepted age ranges is that of “emerging adulthood.”
Emerging Adults and Psychological Health
Emerging Adulthood is the period of time roughly between 18 and 25 where a child is starting to grow into what will eventually be referred to as an “Adult.” In the past, 18 tended to be the cutoff, but we know now that few students leave their Long Island high school and immediately jump into adulthood. Most go through an extensive period of self growth and learning, facing a variety of challenges that include:
- Personal Exploration – This time period is the first period of freedom for many young adults. Many will experiment and explore this freedom, pushing boundaries and figuring out who they are and how they fit into the world.
- Development of Responsibility – During this time period, emerging adults struggle with the clash between freedom and responsibility, not necessarily knowing how to enjoy their freedom while they have to take care of themselves, money, and more.
- Future Thinking – Emerging adults often struggle with understanding how the present can affect the future, and the consequences of their actions. They don’t always know how important it is to focus on college and work, save money, etc.
They’re also starting new relationships, experiencing changes in their body, energy, and sexuality, and so much more. The emerging adult time period is one of tremendous struggle for many youth, which is why it’s important to remember that, if you find your child is struggling, a Long Island psychologist is there to help.
Learn more about my emerging adult psychotherapy services by checking out my Emerging Adult page, here, and if you’d like to learn more about my Long Island psychotherapy services for youth and adults, call me today to schedule your first appointment.