Life is about making decisions, some can lead to positive outcomes or negative consequences. A decision is a choice one makes to reach a final conclusion, one that can change outcomes like the path of life. On a daily basis one makes different kind of decisions, careless ones or more important ones; some can even be able to define life and its future. These decisions are always up to you but can be easily influenced by many factors. The level of pressure towards one choice has to do with the age as well, the younger the person, the less amount of “life” knowledge that the person has. Adults can defend themselves better than younger people, that is why teenagers can be easily influenced by society’s ethics and family’s beliefs versus what they think for themselves. Teenagers have a harder time at making decision since they are highly influenced by different factors.
Society’s ethics are the beliefs that state the difference between right and wrong. They are the differences between what society approves and disapproves; this can be tested in several ways. As stated in the Allphilosophy website,” Right or wrong is relative. It is defined by the principles we share in common. The principles we share in common are the principles we subscribe to and are the principles that bind us.” These principals are taught to us in the different stages of life, but apart from that can be corrupted in a way by the diverse pressure surrounding us. One’s decision is life is influenced by ethics, for example, ethics declare that drugs are illegal. An EL PAIS article talks about a family with a teenage daughter, she is put into a “society’s ethics” situation. Her parents have been growing marijuana in the basement of her house and she is awake of it; she is between the right and wrong concept. In her situation she knows and has learned that her parent’s actions are illegal and for this reason she decides to turn them in. Her parents had important job positions in the United States, but their insensible decision combined with the daughter’s right move was the reason why they were sued. In this example, the daughter was clearly influenced by society’s rules and perfectly knew the differentiation between what is right and what is wrong in society. A conclusion by an adolescent can depend on various aspects; society can be one and normally leads the person to do the right thing.
Family is the group of people that will always be there for you, even if the situation is harsh no one can eliminate that love that goes around, they will help you out and be by your side if everyone else leaves you aside. Among the different stages of life, the family teaches you vales and basically the way of living life. When one reaches the teenage part of life, family and parents have had a huge amount of influence and normally your actions and decisions you make are reflected on the way they have done it. Since they are the examples you follow and even make choices for you, the most common would be having the teenager turn out like them. In some cases, the family values contradict those of society; an example of this is clear in the story “The Barn Burning”, where the father is corrupted but it doesn’t influence the rest of the family’s decision. The fact that the father goes from town to town burning barns teaches the son a lesson. He does realize that it is against the law and ethics but decides to stick to his father, not because he is right but because he is all he has. This is demonstrated when the son says: “I could run away on and on and never look back, never need to see his face again. Only I can’t.” the son could just run away but as he, himself thinks about later on, they are blood and blood should stick together at all time. In this case he son knows that he doesn’t want to turn out like his father but also values family, which complicates his decisions in life.
As shown above, society and family are normally the two most influential factors, but the most dangerous one is the evolving mind of a teenager. Once a kid enters the teenager stage of life they become self center and think that they have some sort of “personal magic”. An adolescent normally only thinks about themselves and wants to experiment new things, this highly influences a decision in life; they tend to loose trust towards others and feel that nobody has felt their pain or love. Those symptoms and emotions can persuade some teens to react in a negative way. Another factor that can have a large amount of pressure on decision making is the “personal magic” that teens tend to think they own. By this, it would mean that in their point of view, no harm in any way can occur to them. A perfect example for it would be that many teenage girls have the possibility of being pregnant but not the one that thinks so, since she has that personal magic in her. The teenager brain is not fully evolved at that age, and that is why the thoughts and false believes can also affect a decision made by an adolescent.
In conclusion, there are many factors that affect the decision making of a teenager, the three main ones discussed are society’s ethics, family’s beliefs and the developing brain of a teenager as well. Decisions can be very important, specially since some are even life changing and that is why they have to be made carefully and in the right atmosphere, with no negative influence surrounding.
Del Pino, Javier. Hay un Monton de droga encase. EL PAIS. 1998.
Faulkner, William. Barn Burning. 1939.
University of New Hampshire. Family Developing Fact Sheet.