the pandemic has “produced” more approved adolescents (and girls more determined to change) –

by time news
from Maurizio Tucci

Surveys on the lifestyles of young people living in Italy have always been an accurate thermometer of their “differences”. In the last survey, however, a notable leveling of behavior was observed

From the Alps to the “pyramids”, metropolis or mountain village, teenagers they all seem to have become the same. The novelty is this year and emerges from the survey «Adolescents a year later», carried out by the Adolescent Laboratory Association and by the Iard research institute, recently published. Surveys on the lifestyles of adolescents living in Italy have always been an accurate thermometer of “differences”, particularly sensitive in this age group. Differences based on geographical area, living in a big city rather than in a small town, attending schools of different types. Differences, of course, for better and for worse: greater cultural consumption for teenagers in big cities, compared to those of small towns, but at the same time greater exposure to phenomena such as the abuse of alcoholic substances. It’s still, healthier eating habits and less dependence on partnersl for girls from the South, compared to their peers from the North who responded with greater attention to issues of sustainability and the environment and with a greater habit of practicing sports.

Course change

Instead, the latest research showed a sudden change of course: the small percentage differences found almost all of them fall within the so-called “range” of the statistical error present in each survey. Certainly we must take into account the very particular year, hopefully unique, that adolescents have lived. Closed at home, with reduced social relationships and remote schooling it is understandable that life, in Milan as in Battipaglia, has been much more similar than it normally could be, but is it just that? There is a risk of some sort of “one-time behavior” that although in some respects it could also be positive and reassuring, on the other it is an impoverishment? «The homologation risk exists – he reflects Loredana Petrone, psychotherapist and sexologist of the University of Chieti -. Having moved so drastically your life, often even sexual, on social media, also has a “reassuring” component that could make it less easy to return to normality and, with it, to diversity. A hyper-cautious and homely adolescence, certainly selfishly appreciated by families, it would probably avoid some risk, but it would be distorted with negative consequences for the transition to adulthood. If you add to this that now, through the vision of the same numerous television series that flood the dedicated portals, even the reference models are the same for everyone, more than they ever were in the past, the risk of cultural leveling becomes even higher “.

Cultural leveling

Leveling that unfortunately appears to be downward, precisely with regard to cultural consumption. Some inevitable in a pandemic year (cinema, theater, exhibitions), others certainly not. Comparing the 2020 data with those of 2021, it rises from 24% to about 30% the national percentage of high school students who did not read even a non-school book during the year. For its part Fulvio Scaparro, psychologist and psychotherapist of childhood and adolescence and referent of the psychological area of ​​Laboratorio Adolescenza, is optimistic and believes it is an absolutely contingent phenomenon: “I am careful not to believe that we are in the presence of some sort of mutation that would have transformed an age group that, since adolescence was “invented”, has always been the most changeable, iridescent, elusive period of our life. We rightly photograph what is happening, but we should always avoid fixating on a photograph. The teenager who today experiences the consequences of the pandemic and the lockdown, only at the end of 2019 solicited other thoughts, comments, concerns and hopes “.

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Males and females

Contingent photography or genetic mutation, the only difference that remains, indeed it radicalizes, is that of gender. Males and females appear increasingly distant in their behavior and habits of life. Girls, at that age, have always demonstrated a higher level of maturity compared to males and therefore behaviors more associated with those of an adult type, but Covid seems to have widened the gap to the advantage of girls. On the one hand they appear more responsible (more concerned about Covid, more prompt and favorable to vaccination), and on the other more open to the future and more willing to get involved – for example by leaving for a year of study abroad – to regain possession of their life parked by the pandemic.

October 24, 2021 (change October 24, 2021 | 18:38)

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