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Understanding Youth Violence: Developmental Perspectives and Influences

May 15, 2023 | 0 comments

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May 15, 2023 | Essays | 0 comments

Research has indicated that violent behaviors are likely to begin in children above ten. The changes in youth violence can be explained through developmental perspectives, which recognize the patterns of behavior change in human life. Preschoolers and toddlers express their personality traits on how active they are, their response to change, and their anger; others cry, while others are oddly quiet. Some developmental markers that may indicate problem behavior include how loud the child is, adaptability, persistence, and the tendency to react to the environment, to mention a few ( Wright, Tibbets &Daigle, 2008).


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. Young persons in the adolescent stage experience changes and vulnerability, which increases the frequency and means of expression and other associated dangerous behavior. To help these children improve, it is important to understand the traits and development markers associated with problem behavior. Most problem behaviors associated with adolescents include crimes that symbolize adult privilege or freedom from parental control, such as drug abuse, eloping, vandalism, and theft. Youths in the early trajectory commit more serious offenses than the youths in the late trajectory. The main reason is that violence is usually transferred from childhood to adolescence and sometimes into adulthood. During the transition from adolescence to adulthood, research has shown disruption of serious violence ( Wright, Tibbets &Daigle, 2008).

The environment influences the lifespan or personality of a child. A real-life example would be cultural effects, some cultures such as in the Northern European Countries and parts of the United States place emphasis on individual needs and achievements; on the other hand, in Africa and Asia, emphasis is placed on belonging to a larger group, community achievements such as family. In the latter cultural cooperation is more important than competitiveness which is considered necessary for personal development. Personality traits in the same environment do not usually turn out the same. Others may be abiding by society’s rules, while others may not. Boys are also more likely to be involved in criminal activities than girls ( Wright, Tibbets &Daigle, 2008).

It is important to address youth violence early on to prevent it from continuing into adulthood. This can be done through various means, such as providing children with positive role models, teaching them social skills and emotional regulation, and intervening in situations where they may be at risk for engaging in violent behavior. Parents, teachers, and other adults in a child’s life can all play a role in helping children develop pro-social behaviors and coping skills.

Another approach to preventing youth violence is addressing the larger societal and community factors contributing to it. This can include addressing poverty, inequality, and lack of access to resources and opportunities. We can create a more supportive and positive environment for children and young people to grow and thrive by addressing these underlying issues.

It is also important to recognize that not all children and young people are at equal risk for engaging in violent behavior. Some may be more vulnerable due to various factors, such as their family and social environment, exposure to violence, and personal experiences. By understanding these risk and protective factors, we can better target our efforts to prevent youth violence and support the development of healthy and positive behaviors in children and young people.


Wright, J., Tibbetts, S., & Daigle, L. (2008). Criminals in the making: Criminality across the life course. Los Angeles: Sage.

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