Erickson felt that at this age we enter into a crisis between identity and role confusion. This crisis involves balancing the desire to try out many possible selves and the need to select a single self
Erickson believed the primary task of the adolescent is to develope an ego identity: a sense of who you are and what you stand for.
- Must consider:
- -Future occupation
- -Political beliefs
- -Relgious beliefs
- -Sexual orientation
- -Gender role behaviors
The ability to engage in formal operational thinking helps adolescents make these decisions.
Erickson believed adolescence is the a process of psychological Moratorium: a time out period where adolescents experiment with different roles, values, beliefs and relationships.
During this time adolescents often have an identity crisis: an examination of one's values and investigation into one's role in life.