When do teenagers start to mature?

Puberty: Different stages of puberty

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The development stage of puberty can be divided into different phases. One speaks of the Pre-puberty, which usually begins towards the end of elementary school, the The high phase of puberty, in which the physical, sexual and mental development is in full swing, and from the late adolescent phasewhich occurs from around the age of 16.

Sexuality is an important issue during all stages of puberty. Sexuality doesn't just include sexual intercourse. People are sexual beings from birth and begin to be interested in sexuality long before puberty itself. As early as preschool age, children begin to specifically touch their external genital organs. This reflects the desire for sexual experiences. There is also an initial interest in the opposite sex at elementary school age.

From around the age of nine in girls and around the age of eleven in boys, hormonal changes cause them to become sexually mature and the external and internal genital organs to change. First falling in love and erotic fantasies. Sexual impulses become stronger and self-gratification (masturbation) becomes an issue.


Puberty does not start immediately - this gives parents and children time to adjust to this exciting phase with many changes. For most children, signs of puberty first become noticeable towards the end of elementary school; Pre-puberty sets in around this time.

Girls and boys are beginning to question the rules set by their parents and increasingly want to make their own decisions. They strive for independence and refuse to be treated like a "toddler" in their eyes. At the same time, children increasingly need their parents in this phase as discussion partners and contact persons for questions of knowledge.

Children are now disappearing into their room more and more often and do not want to be disturbed by their parents. One's own sexuality is hidden from others and also from parents. This "Withdraw" is a first sign that children are becoming independent. In other moments, however, they still have the need for closeness and family security and still want them "Be a child". A good opportunity for parents to maintain the close parent-child relationship. This prepubescent phase usually lasts one to two years.

In pre-puberty, boys often overflow with energy and strength; they are constantly on the move and measure their strength against their peers in wrangling and playing sports. Sitting still for hours at school is almost impossible for many boys of this age.

Pre-puberty is also an exciting phase for girls, with a greater urge to move and talk, and physical restlessness. Girls at this age are often silly, like giggling, and whispering.

Mood swings are more common before the first menstruation. Many girls get moody - sometimes they are sociable, sometimes they prefer to be alone. They often spend hours chatting with their friends. The topic is often crushes, which girls often encounter during this phase. Here, attention can be directed to a boy or, for example, to a pop star.

The transition phase between childhood and adulthood is reflected particularly well in many children's rooms: they are often home to cuddly toys next to posters by stars.

The high phase

About between the ages of 12 and 16 most young people are in the The high phase of puberty. During this time, physical, emotional and sexual development is in full swing. When girls and boys become sexually mature, they find many things embarrassing, especially when it comes to changes in their own bodies. You avoid showing yourself naked in front of parents and siblings. It is not uncommon to see embarrassed glances wandering at this age, comparing the level of development of your own body with that of other young people.

Emotional outbursts such as loud giggles or loud conversations in public show that emotional development is also in full swing: teenagers are looking for their place in society and trying to assert themselves among themselves. People of the same age are becoming more and more important as caregivers. The young people seek understanding from them and share common experiences.

During puberty, the opposite sex also becomes an increasingly important issue. Many young people are now getting to know the first time they are in love. They discover kissing and exchanges of tenderness, many are having sexual intercourse for the first time. Now it is time for the parents to address the issue prevention to address.

Other questions relating to staying away in the evening and the overnight visit of the first friend are also discussed - and often lead to differences of opinion between parents and young people. The amount of pocket money and the achievements in school can develop into a point of contention during this time.

Many parents complain that their children become increasingly withdrawn during puberty. On the other hand, pubescent children do not want their parents to interfere in everything - they often feel that their parents do not understand them and prefer to discuss their problems with friends.

Late adolescent phase

Of the late adolescent phase one speaks about from the age of 16. When this age is reached, the waves have usually smoothed out a bit. The adolescents have got used to the change processes of puberty and are able to cope better with their progressive adult life - and at this point the parents have usually also found their new role. They have accepted that their children will become independent and experience sexuality.

However, discussions can still arise in this phase. However, young people are increasingly expressing their own opinions and are less and less influenced by their parents. Now is the time for children and parents to understand how to break away from each other and allow each other freedom. Conversely, this does not have to mean that they have to lose contact with one another.