If you are a teenager, chances are you constantly question yourself. You are growing up, and your life is changing. One extremely impacting thing that you may be questioning is the topic of love. For teens, friends and family are the two major recipients of love. They make up so much of your life, and without them you wouldn’t be you. A question I would pose is: does the love for family or the love for friends have more of an impact on your decisions? I have found through my personal experience and recent research that for most teenagers the love for friends has more of an impact on your decisions.
I first began thinking about this question by relating it to my life as a teenager. On a typical weekday, I will get up, go to school, and not be home again for at least 8 hours. Added to my goal of getting 7 to 8 hours of sleep, that’s about 16 hours of the day away from family. I also have evening commitments and spend most of my night in my room doing homework. The only time I am really with my whole family is dinnertime, if possible. This is pretty typical for a teenager, and I think it is because teenagers are at the point in their lives where they are becoming less dependent on their parents and other family members. They are in the transition to adulthood. In the article, “Dealing With Your Parents”, from the Shaker High School databases, Marisa H. states, “We should acknowledge that as we develop and change, so do the relationships we have with the people in or lives. This includes the relationship that we have with our parents.” When this relationship changes and we become more independent, our decisions in every day life alter. You very well may love your parents no less than you ever have, but just the changes every teenager experiences can alter your relationship with them, therefore affecting your decisions.
Of course, there are other scenarios that explain the idea that for most teenagers the love for friends has more of an impact on decisions than the love for family. I think a highly important one is that teenagers are surrounded by their friends every day at school and are with them more than family members, therefore sharing the experience of growing up together. If you think about it, I’m sure there are friends in your life whom you have been friends with ever since you started school. You have seen these friends grow and change, and they have seen the same of you. Being with these people who are going through the same things as you at the same time automatically makes you able to relate to them, essentially strengthening your relationship. The article “Friendship for Girls”, from the Shaker High School databases, states, “Everybody needs friends, but in high school, they are extremely necessary. This is a time for learning independence, and it is very helpful to be surrounded by people who understand what you are going through.” The people you are surrounded by shape you as a person; therefore, they also impact your decisions. The idea of shared experience plays a role in my personal life as well. I think that the people I am around most often and the people who have common interests are the people who impact my decisions the greatest.
Though your family has an impact on your decisions, there is evidence including my personal experience to show that for most teenagers, the love for friends has more of an impact. Teenagers are at the point in their lives where they are becoming less dependent on parents and other family members. Also, teenagers are surrounded by their friends every day at school, and are with them more than family members, therefore sharing the experience of growing up together. Just remember that every child transitions into adulthood and deals with similar issues, so you are not alone.