Teenage Wonder
Woman's Era|February 2021
The Agony and Ecstasy of a Teenager.
Sujatha Rao

According to an article by UNICEF, India has the largest population of adolescents in the world, being home to 243 million individuals aged 10-19 years.

While the promise and potential of the nation lie in these youthful human resources, this situation also comes with an onerous responsibility on the part of the state and parents/guardians to collectively nurture and harness this potential towards fruition.

This task seems to be easier said than done as adolescence is a very vulnerable period in anyone’s life. In this connection, it’s apt to quote the following lines from the movie “Chemical Hearts,” released in 2020:

“You are never more alive than when you’re a teenager. Your brain is flushed with chemicals that can turn your life into a story of epic proportions. A-minus feels like the Pulitzer, a lonely Saturday night is an eternity of solitude, and your lab partner becomes the great love of your life.”

INDEED, THE INTENSITY OF PLEASURE AND PAIN WITH WHICH LIFE IS LIVED DURING THIS PHASE IS UNPARALLELED IN ONE’S LIFE, SINCE IT HAPPENS TO BE A PHASE OF MANY FIRSTS THE FIRST TIME ONE WAKES UP TO THE ECSTASY OF THE FIRST LOVE, THE AGONY OF THE FIRST HEARTACHE, THE CONFUSION OF PUBERTY.

Indeed, the intensity of pleasure and pain with which life is lived during this phase is unparalleled in one’s life, since it happens to be a phase of many firsts - the first time one wakes up to the ecstasy of the first love, the agony of the first heartache, the confusion of puberty and maybe for some of the teenagers the mixed feelings of the first intercourse experience.

With all the chemicals firing off in the brain, it’s also a phase when one is trying to figure out who one really is while transitioning from a girl into a woman or from a boy into a man.

As one navigates through so many uncharted territories for the very first time, along with the unbridled joy one experience, its small wonder then that one also goes through the highest level of anxiety, nervousness, and even depression at times during this phase, since one is not yet mature enough to handle all this emotional turmoil.

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