“Adolescence now ends at 25 to prevent young people getting an inferiority complex.”
Really? The BBC report claims that during adolescence, the way everyday situations and data is processed changes significantly from when a person is a child, to when they reach middle age.
Why does an author of Young Adult and New Adult fiction bring this up? Simple. The elements of a New Adult novel fit certain criteria in the research and article by child psychologist Laverne Antrobus from London’s Tavistock Clinic who told the BBC “We are becoming much more aware and appreciating development beyond [the age of 18] and I think it’s a really good initiative.”
Adolescence no longer ends when people hit 18, according to updated guidelines being given to child psychologists. The new directive is designed to extend the age range that child psychologists can work with from 18 years old up to 25.
It is hoped the initiative will stop children being ‘rushed’ through their childhood and feeling pressured to achieve key milestones quickly, reports the BBC.
There are now three stages of adolescence, according to the BBC report: early adolescence that ranges from 12 to 14 years, middle adolescence from 15 to 17 years and 18 and over is classed as late adolescence.
Authors have long held that give or take couple of years to allow for differences in upbringing mid-grade usually ends around 14 years old, young adult is in the 14 to 18 years and the new adult genre is in the 18 to 25 year old group.
It has been introduced because research now suggests the brain continues developing through and passed teenage years, well into a person’s mid-twenties and thirties.
The new guidance is also to ensure that over 18s don’t miss out on opportunities, or are forgotten about, in terms of health and education. New scanning technology has made it possible for psychologists and other doctors to track how the brain changes and processes information. It adds that as the brain ‘reorganises itself’, people start to see and think about things differently and the brain becomes more like an adult brain. Could this be one reason why in a well written new adult story the character arcs tend to be more pronounced?
In our first New Adult Romance, Life’s What Happens the characters are forced to take bigger arc than you would see in people in their late twenties for example. This background about being a passive adult will be built into our upcoming New Adult series Scandals, book #1, Baby Daddy.
Passive Adult? Nice term.