1.1 Background to the Study
Delinquent behaviour is a serious problem that occurs in adolescence. Adolescents with this behaviour may display a pattern of disruptive and violent behaviour and have problems following rules (Hinshaw & Lee, 2003). It is not uncommon for adolescents to have delinquent-related problems at some time during their development. However, the behaviour is considered to be a delinquent when it is long-lasting and when it violates the rights of others, when it goes against accepted norms of behaviour and disrupts the child’s or family’s everyday life (Hinshaw & Lee, 2003; Goldberg, 2012)
It is also noted that an adolescent progresses through stages of biological development as well as changes in psychological and social functioning. Developing proper emotions and controlling them is very essential during adolescence. Meeting social demands as well as eliminating the damaging effects of the emotions on attitudes, habits, behaviour and physical well-being, as well as control of emotions, is essential. Control does not mean repression but learning to approach a social situation with a rational attitude and repression of those emotions which are socially unacceptable.
When an individual reaches adolescence, he/she knows what type of behaviour is expected of him or her and which behaviour are unacceptable. Adolescents however misbehave from time to time for a variety of reasons. Perhaps, they feel that they need to assert their own independence or they wish to test the limits imposed on them. Sometimes, adolescents misbehave because they are experiencing internal distress, anger, frustration, disappointment, anxiety, or hopelessness. There are also those whose
behaviour is consistently of concern to others. In such cases, the adolescents‗ behaviouris clearly outside the range of what is considered normal or acceptable. Perhaps, most alarming is that many of them show little remorse, guilt, or understanding of the damage and pain inflicted on people by their delinquent (Pruitt, 2000).
The future of any nation is largely determined by the well-being of adolescents. Dealing with adolescents has always been a challenge for both parents and helping professionals. Delinquent behaviours typically develop in childhood and adolescence. While some delinquent issues may be normal, those who have delinquent behaviours develop chronic patterns of aggression, defiance, open refusal to laws or regulations, disruption and hostility. Adolescents‗delinquents can cause problems at home or school and can interfere with relationships. Adolescents with behaviour problem may develop personality behaviours, depression, or bipolar behaviour as adults (Richard-Harrington, 2008).
Adolescents‗delinquent behaviour may include: lying, smoking, use of alcohol and or drugs, involvement in early sexual activity, skipping school and having higher than average risk of suicide. Adolescents may also have other mental, emotional or delinquent behaviours like attention-deficit hyperactivity behaviour (ADHD), oppositional defiant behaviour (ODD) among others (Hinshaw & Lee, 2003; American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, 2010).
Delinquent as one of the major constructs in this study is a problem characterised by a consistent pattern of harming others or their property, or breaking major accepted rules or standards of behaviour. Individuals must be developmentally able to understand and follow the standards of delinquent in order to be considered as having delinquent behaviour (Evans, 2012). According to APA (2000), delinquent behaviour is defined as a repetitive and persistent pattern of delinquent that violates the rights of others or in which
major age-appropriate societal norms or rules are violated. The symptoms of the behaviour fall into four main subscales or dimensions: aggression to people and animals, destruction of property, deceitfulness, and serious violation of rules (Frick & Nigg, 2012). Frick, Stickle, Dandreaux, Farrell & Kimonis (2005) are of the opinion that delinquent is an important psychiatric behaviour for a number of reasons which are closely related to criminal and violent delinquent that is associated with problems in adjustment across the lifespan.
EFFECT OF COGNITIVE RESTRUCTURING ON DELINQUENT BEHAVIOUR AMONG ADOLESCENTS IN BORSTAL TRAINING INSTITUTE