Juvenile Delinquency: Effects on Teens and their Parents
Juvenile delinquency is a subject that has been researched by countless universities, government bodies, and social organizations. The outcome of this research has been as varied as the number of studies conducted. While some of these studies have similar results as to the cause of delinquency, the only real answer is that there are many causes for minors who turn to crime.
Instead of focusing on the various reasons that delinquency occurs, it is time to address what happens afterward to the teen and their families. The outcome of misconduct is often forgotten when addressing the problem.
The Guilt of the Crime
For the teenager that has been arrested for committing a crime, there is guilt attached to their actions. They feel ashamed by the fact that they have done something against the law and now have to face their parents and later, a judge. The guilt can cause the teen to become very quiet and withdrawn or may cause them to lash out and be angry. These are normal reactions to a stressful situation.
For parents, the guilt is genuine. Parents experience a type of guilt that is exclusive to parents. Knowing that their child has been accused of participating in a criminal act is a direct reflection of their parenting skills. Parents become very ashamed for allowing this crime to happen. They feel responsible for letting their children down and for letting society down. Many parents become withdrawn from family and friends when their child is accused of delinquency because they don’t want to face their loved ones and explain the situation.
The Fear of the Unknown
Once an arrest has been made, fear sets in for both the teen and the parents. No one knows what is going to happen next, and the thought of being convicted is scary for all parties involved. Parents do not know what to tell their child that has been arrested. At the same time, the teen is realizing that there will be consequences for their actions.
It is at this point that the parents should secure quality legal representation for their child. There are law firms in Waukesha that are dedicated to representing juvenile delinquency cases. The right legal representation will have a significant impact on the outcome of the case.
Addressing the Problems
Juvenile delinquency is not something that happens without reason. Delinquency is generally a result of a problem in the life of the minor. Addressing that problem can be a stressful situation for both the minor and the parents.
For minors, expressing a problem may be difficult. Teens are not always adept at expressing their feelings or problems, thus the term “moody teen.” If a problem in their life is significant, acting up and getting into trouble may be their way of venting their frustration. However, getting them to admit the problem can be a challenge.
For parents, addressing issues within their family, parenting style, choice of acquaintances, or the choice of friends of their children may also be challenging. It is only natural to want to ignore a problem and hope it goes away. These issues, however, must be addressed to help prevent any future delinquent activity.
Once the issue has been addressed, and problems have been dealt with, it is time to move on from the issue. Moving on and allowing mistakes to remain in the past can also be difficult. While it is important not to forget things that have happened in the past so that they are not repeated, it is also essential to move on and do better with your life.
For minors, the ability to move forward and be forgiven for their transgression is crucial. Teens cannot feel as if they have done something terrible, so now everything they are going to do is going to be wrong. They must be made to understand that things can change, and they can move forward and create a good life for themselves as adults. If a teen is going to feel as if they can do nothing but break the law, that is precisely what will happen.
Forgiveness is also essential for parents. Parents must be willing to forgive their teen for making a mistake and help them make the right choices in the future. Everyone slips up; it is how you move forward that matters. Parents must also be willing to forgive themselves.
Parents will always feel the guilt from the actions of their child. Knowing that you handled the situation correctly and that you have made progress in correcting any problems is a reason to give yourself forgiveness. By forgiving yourself, you are setting an excellent example for your child.
Legal Representation For Juvenile Delinquency Cases
Minors facing criminal charges need quality legal representation. However, it should be understood that not all criminal defense law firms in Waukesha are the same. When it comes to minors being charged with crimes, you need a law firm that has dedicated attorneys that handle cases for children.
Criminal cases against minors are not handled the same way in the court system as adult cases. There are different procedures, different laws, and an entirely different court system. The outcome of these cases is often different, as well. It is imperative to your child’s case that you have an attorney that understands all of these differences.
It is also vital that you work with a law firm that has attorneys and staff members that are compassionate and understanding and do not intimidate the child or teen. You are not going to have quality legal representation if the child feels intimidated or shamed by the attorney or their staff. Working with an attorney who works with children is beneficial to your case.
Your child may be facing severe penalties for the crime for which they were accused. You want to make sure that you are working with an attorney that has the best interest of your child at hand, not just an attorney that wishes to plea bargain a punishment and move on to the next case in their stack.
The outcome of criminal charges is never guaranteed. However, with the right legal representation, your child will get the best possible outcome for their criminal case.