Building Good Men
Educating Boys May 06, 2019

Dealing with risk taking and the consequences for boys

Young adults are more likely to make quick decisions and engage in risky behaviour that may harm them because the part of their brain that controls impulse and planning doesn’t fully mature until 25 years old.

They are exploring limits and boundaries, and are seeking new experiences as Nina S. Mounts explores. Many external factors affect why their actions and decisions may develop into risky behaviour.

Peer pressure from friends is the largest contributor to risk taking, whether direct or indirect. How adolescents are viewed by their peers guides much of their behaviour in a desire to fit in. This can be compounded by adolescents with low self esteem or mental health issues. They are less likely to say no and can use risky behaviour as a way to relieve stress.

Boredom, rebellion and an illusion of invincibility also ignite risky behaviour. Adolescents seek excitement, independence and escape, making risky behaviours such as unsafe sexual activity, drugs, alcohol or illegal activities seem more appealing.

As suggested by Kids Helpline, here are some ways you can deal with risk taking and the consequences for boys:

  • Good communication is key to knowing what your son is upto away from home.
  • Encouraging sports or other hobbies such as The Arts, gives safer alternatives to reduce boredom.
  • Be a good role model and set positive examples as a parent.
  • Inform your son with balanced information about risky behavious and talk about peer pressure and coping methods like asserting themselves.
  • Set boundaries for your son and have set rules so your son knows what is and isn’t acceptable.
  • Seek support such as a counsellor so your son can discuss issues and receive help.

Boys at Christ Church are able to seek help and advice from The Wynne Centre for Boys’ Health and Wellbeing on ways they can apply strategies in their daily lives to encourage healthy living and reduce the attraction of risky behaviour.

Author

Christ Church Grammar School

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