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December 10, 1960

On Managing Adolescents

Author Affiliations

Kansas City, Mo.

From the Department of Psychiatry, University of Kansas School of Medicine.

JAMA. 1960;174(15):1954-1957. doi:10.1001/jama.1960.03030150042011

During adolescence the individual must move from a position of dependence on the family home toward emotional, social, and economic independence. It is also the period of sexual maturation, with the need for sound, acceptable channeling of sexual urges. The physician is often consulted about the problems and adjustments of adolescents and their parents, and for this he needs some simple rules and valid advice to offer these patients. A set of rules is outlined, emphasizing that the adjustments of adolescence require flexibility by both parents and adolescents as the parents gradually relinquish authority and control to the adolescent who progressively assumes them. Seven guide rules to facilitate this transition are given and the major pitfalls of adolescence are discussed.