Youve probably known a parent of a middle-schooler who has lamented that aliens abducted their sweet child and returned a dierent, not so sweet preteen being. Early adolescence is a time of change in the relationship between parent and adolescent, and both have to adjust. Although most families weather these changes without serious diculties, some families do have problems. Some research shows that when parents are critical and angry with their young teens, theyre more likely to misbehave at school and exhibit other bad behaviors. But youth also may act in hostile ways toward their parents. Recent research studied more than 400 youth ages 11 to 14 and their parents to better understand youth problem behavior, hostility between parents and young teens, and the inuence of peers. e research conrmed that when parents and adolescents were hostile with each other, even at low levels of hostility, young teens behaved in problematic ways, such as misbehaving at school, or lying and cheating. Hostility between parents and teens seemed to take a toll on parents energy and patience, too, and they found it more dicult to set and follow consistent and eective rules (Buehler, 2006). ere are ways for familiesparents and youthto make a smoother transition to the teen years, such as to learn strategies for communicating respectfully with each other, managing conict, and setting reasonable rules and limits. ese patterns are best begun earlier in childhood, before families cross the sometimes-rocky terrain to adolescence. Early Adolescent Problem Behavior1Suzanna Smith2 1. This document is FAR1217, one of a series of the Family Youth and Community Sciences Department, Florida Cooperative Extension Service, Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences, University of Florida. Broadcast as program 515. Published on EDIS March 2012. In the interest of time and/or clarity, the broadcast version of this script may have been modied. Visit the EDIS website at http://edis.ifas.u.edu 2. Suzanna Smith, associa te professor, Department of Family, Youth and Community Sciences, Cooperative Extension Service, Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences, University of Florida, Gainesville, FL 32611.The Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (IFAS) is an Equal Opportunity Institution authorized to provide research, educational information and other services only to individuals and institutions that function with non-discrimination with respect to race, creed, color, religion, age, disability, sex, sexual orientation, marital status, national origin, political opinions or aliations. U.S. Department of Agriculture, Cooperative Extension Service, University of Florida, IFAS, Florida A. & M. University Cooperative Extension Program, and Boards of County Commissioners Cooperating. Millie Ferrer-Chancy, Interim Dean Credits: Stockbyte
2 Listening, learning, and living together: its the science of life. Family Album is a co-production of University of Florida IFAS Extension, the Department of Family, Youth and Community Sciences, and of WUFT-FM. If youd like to learn more, please visit our website at http://www.familyalbumradio.org To listen to the radio broadcast: http://www.radiosource.net/radio_stories/515.mp3 http://www.radiosource.net/radio_stories/515.wavReferencesBuehler, C. (2006). Parents and peers in relation to early adolescent problem behavior. Journal of Marriage and Family 68, 109-124.