Monday, August 15, 2011

Dr. Marianne Legato, MD, on the unique challenges adolescent boys face

At the Male Studies conference 2011, Dr. Marianne Legato, MD, spoke on adolescent boys. She is the founder and director of Columbia College of Medicine’s Partnership for Gender-Specific Medicine, editor of the first text on gender medicine, and founder of the journal, Gender Medicine. Her most recent book is Why Men Die First.

The problem with the adolescent male navigating that difficult transition from puberty to young adulthood is a disconnect in the timing of an abrupt increase in gonadal hormones that occurs in both sexes at the time of puberty, but which for boys produces intense emotional lability, and high intensity feelings, while the part of the brain that develops risk assessment and emotional control and stability, lags well behind. Girls do not have a similar retardation of that center of the brain and therefore are much less likely to incur the kinds of disasters that face adolescent boys until they are 20.

Remember that the next time an adolescent boy is charged with a crime for dating an adolescent girl who is likely at least as physically developed as he is, and more emotionally developed.

Links to part 1 & 2 of the conference where Dr. Legato spoke (she speaks in part 2):

Part 1:

Part 2:

Discussion at Reddit.

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