Enduring Legacies Native Case Studies

Case Study

Back to the Cradle: Love and Other Relationships

Author:Mary Big Bow, MSW

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Theme(s)

Do you remember the first time you fell in love? Not those silly seven minutes in heaven games in childhood, but the “tingle in your toes, can't stop smiling, can't eat, can't sleep” kind of falling in love? What an utterly pleasant feeling that makes people smile even decades after the fact. Adolescence is a time of firsts; first hand holding, first kiss, first job, first car, indeed a time of crisis and identity formation. Coupled with the fact that adolescents are at the peak OF(in) their physical fitness, they can eat endlessly, or go without eating for days, can stand extreme heat and cold, and most believe they are immortal contributing to risky behavior. An exciting time in any case.

Adults close to these youths' lives are often perplexed, frustrated, and angry by some of the behaviors exhibited during this transition into adulthood. Parents and caregivers can and do have a positive impact in helping their teen regulate emotions, enter healthy relationships, learn work ethics, experience trust, and develop respect.

Updated: August 25, 2012