The modernization develops a procrastination among the youth

Youth. A neglected generation

Table of Contents


1 Introduction

2. Emotional challenges of adolescence

3. Youth and Society
3.1 Youth in a social context
3.2 Social changes in their impact on youth welfare

4. Youth and environment
4.1 Emotional neglect in the family
4.2 Emotional neglect in peer groups

5. Youth in youth welfare
5.1 Youth as a neglected target group
5.2 Lack of suitable aids

6. Consequences of neglect

7. Explanation of the research design
7.1 Creation of the guideline
7.2 Selection of interview partners
7.3 Evaluation with the help of the qualitative content analysis according to Phillip Mayring

8. Evaluation of the interviews
Tina Mützer:
Hermann Thies:
8.2 Professional summary
8.3 Evaluation of the young people
8.4 Youth summary

9. Results of the research and its consequences for social workers

10. Conclusion



1. Lead questionnaire for professionals

2. Interviews professionals
2.1 Interview "Tina Mützer"
2.2 Interview "Hermann Thies"

3. Key questionnaire for young people

4. Interviews with teenagers
4.1 Interview "Chantal"
4.2 Interview "Dilara"
4.3 Interview "Emilia"
4.4 Interview "Emily"
4.5 Interview "Medina"
4.6 Interview "Nina"

5. Questionnaires for young people
5.1 "Elina" questionnaire
5.2 "Kevin" questionnaire

6. Expert interview questions in comparison
6.1 Expert interviews with professionals
6.2 Expert interviews with young people


For over four years I have been involved in open child and youth work every day and have been able to gain invaluable experience that inspired me to do this bachelor thesis.

Even if I sometimes felt like I was thrown into the cold water and had the feeling of standing in front of insurmountable obstacles and sinking into chaos, I have gained valuable learning experiences that a degree alone could never have given me. I am infinitely grateful for this and also for all the trust, all the encouragement and all the reflection that the CJD Göddenstedt and especially the CJD Youth Migration Service Uelzen have shown me with the HASKFF project. I was welcomed into family.

Special thanks go to all children, young people and families whom I got to know at work and who showed me creative survival strategies. People who master their lives despite the most adverse living conditions.

I would also like to thank my family and friends who have endured me and my work over the years. I apologize for the countless interruptions at dinner when youthful teenagers called me desperately and for all the appointments to which I came too late or not at all because I was looking for runaway teenagers or assisted them in taking care of them. Thank you for all of your understanding and all of your patience with me!

1 Introduction

A child is neglected and pityed for the resulting consequences. Society is dismayed, youth welfare offers help.

A young person is neglected and made personally responsible for the effects. Society rejects him or her and youth welfare services cannot offer any help.

A provocative escalation, but to what extent is it really reality? The following bachelor thesis with the title "Youth - a neglected generation" aims to clarify this question.

The aim of this work is to focus on the target group of neglected 13 to 18 year olds in order to draw attention to their needs. It is aimed at everyone who has to do with young people, both professionally and personally. In particular social workers in youth welfare use this work as an argumentation basis for help and as a working aid.

The central topic of this bachelor thesis is neglect. According to Reinhold Schone, neglect denotes "[...] the persistent or repeated failure to take care-taking action by those responsible for caring [...] which would be necessary to ensure the physical and psychological care of the child"1 How many children and young people are neglected in Germany is unclear, as there is a high number of unreported cases and hardly any studies on it. According to a research project by Münder, neglect is by far the most common reason for a child's well-being. In 65% of all cases at risk of child welfare, among other things, there is neglect, in 50% of all cases neglect is the main characteristic of the child’s welfare risk.2 This illustrates the importance and timeliness of neglect. For children under 3, it is the main cause in around 71% of child welfare risks. It is noticeable that their share decreases with increasing age. Among 15 to 18 year olds, neglect is cited as the main reason in only 15.4% of cases of child welfare. How do these numbers come about? Are there actually fewer teenage neglects or are they less recognized?

Neglected infants and toddlers can starve to death, adolescents can provide themselves with food. Small children need the care of their parents around the clock, adolescents break away from their parents and meet up with friends. Does that mean that the consequences of neglect in adolescence are less serious?

All of these questions should be clarified in this work.

Neglect is neglecting needs. In order to better understand this, Punk 2 first deals with the emotional challenges of adolescence, development tasks and needs.

Point 3 focuses on the field of youth and society. 3.1 deals with youth in a social context and thus with society's view of young people. The social changes and their effects on youth welfare is the topic in point 3.2. The next point looks at the youth environment and the neglect that takes place in it. 4.1 neglect in the family and 4.2 neglect in peer groups. Point 5 then examines how the affected young people can be helped by looking at the young people in youth welfare. In 5.1 it is shown to what extent young people are a neglected target group and in 5.2 it is explained why there is little suitable help. The consequences resulting from this lack of help and from neglect are shown in point 6. The empirical part starts with point 7. In order to supplement the theory established in points 3 to 6 with a picture of the practice and everyday life of social workers and neglected young people, the author conducted guided interviews. Two experts from youth welfare were interviewed. Since those affected are certainly the best experts themselves, eight young people were also interviewed with only slightly simplified questions. The young people come from an open child and youth welfare facility and were classified as neglected by the supervising social worker. The results of the interviews were summarized using the qualitative content analysis according to Philipp Mayring. Item 7 explains the research design, while Item 8 deals with the evaluation of the interviews. In point 9, the results of the research are summarized and their consequences for social work are shown.

All findings are brought together with a conclusion in point 10.

2. Emotional challenges of adolescence

To better understand teens and their needs, it is important to understand the emotional challenges they are facing.

It should be said in advance that, unlike in the law, adolescence is not a clearly defined phase of life.3 According to § 7 of the Child and Youth Welfare Act "[...] young people are people who are 14 but not yet 18 years old"4. In reality, due to the individualization and pluralization of society, such a limitation is not possible.5 While youth used to end with marriage and financial independence, the transition to adulthood has now become fluid due to long periods of training and the loss of importance of marriage. Just like the end of adolescence, the beginning cannot be precisely determined by age. The onset of puberty, and with it physical development, marks the beginning of adolescence.6 However, since this usually begins before the 14th birthday, all statements in this work also relate to younger people. This bachelor thesis roughly looks at the age from 13 years, since puberty is in full swing there7 and thus follows young professionals such as Dieter Baacke and Rolf Göppel, who also mainly describe the age group of young people aged 13 and over.

At this age, young people face important developmental tasks. As a phase of life between childhood and adulthood, adolescence is the phase of biological, psychological and social maturation.8 The term 'puberty' describes physical change and 'adolescence' describes psychological and social development.9

The physical changes present the young people with an emotional challenge: they first have to learn to love their 'new' body. The hormones cause pimples and uneven growth spurts, which lead to a "[...] feeling ugly [...]10 " to lead.11 The "[...] sexual maturations irritate and alienate [...]"12. Young people often have the feeling that everyone is looking at them and that no one is like them. This is due on the one hand to the changes in the body and on the other hand to the egocentrism of young people, which arises from the newly acquired ability to metacognition, i.e. reflect on one's own thinking.13 The fact that young people feel constantly observed makes them more insecure and self-conscious. The feeling of uniqueness can also become a problem. “This is the << nobody-is-like-me-feeling >>. From there it is only a small step to the << nobody-understands-me-feeling >>. "14

In psychological and social development, it is important to find an identity and a place in society. Prof. Dr. Achim Schröder speaks of the four coping fields of family, love, work and self.15

The psychoanalyst Erik H. Erikson developed a step model for psychosocial stages that an individual must successfully go through. At each stage there is a major crisis that needs to be addressed and is made up of an antithesis. In adolescence this is identity versus role diffusion. An appropriate solution to this crisis is to experience oneself in a pleasant way. This is how you manage to deal with different roles that are used in different contexts. If an individual does not succeed in this, role diffusion occurs and a stable self-image cannot arise.16

So young people should find themselves and be allowed to experiment for it. In order to find their way around in peace, it is important, according to Erikson, that young people can have experiences without having to bear the full responsibility of an adult. The youth phase should therefore be a psychosocial moratorium, a postponement of taking on responsibility.17

In order for conflicts to be successfully mastered in the later stages, crises in the preceding stages must have been resolved.18 Without autonomy from early childhood and without trust in one's own initiative from preschool age, it is not possible in elementary school to develop self-esteem-enhancing skills.

"In this respect, youth is the sum of previous development: You receive a first ."19

The American developmental psychologist Robert Havighurst orients himself on Erikson. He divides life into nine phases of life and assigns them developmental tasks that must be fulfilled in preparation for life in society.20 He assigns the sections youth and adolescence to finding one's own identity and gender role, developing a future perspective, developing autonomy and forming one's own values. He agrees with Rolf Göppel.

According to Rolf Göppel, one of the central developmental tasks in adolescence is the separation from parents21, developing mature friendship relationships22, mastering school learning23, the development of a self-determined and responsible sexuality24, developing independent points of view25 and building an identity26.

The detachment from parents is more of a developmental restructuring of the parent-child relationship27. This is a very paradoxical process, as it is about gaining autonomy on the one hand and maintaining affection and communication on the other. At this age, young people have to establish their own networks of relationships and find a position in cliques and groups. In this context, they practice autonomy, get closer to love relationships and examine their first drafts of identity.28 In addition, sexuality develops, whereby responsibility must be taken and self-respect and self-determination must be learned.29

Young people also face challenges in the school context. The schooling time has lengthened and with it the demand for good school qualifications has increased. Less than a third of 16-year-olds are employed.30 Without a good education there are no good jobs today. It is therefore important for students to learn independently and thus to take responsibility for their future.31 In general, young people have to find their own point of view on all important issues in life, such as religion, politics and morals, and thus to find their own identity.32 The most important decisions and foundations for later life as an adult are made and laid in adolescence.

According to the Dutch developmental psychologist Martine F. Delfos, during adolescence "[...] the weak points in the development of the preceding years come to light"33. If a child has not completed important developmental tasks, it is difficult as a teenager to master the developmental tasks. This becomes clear in the example of the bond. A secure bond occurs in the first few years of life. However, if this has not been established, the adolescent will find it difficult to develop relationships, which is an important task of adolescence. Since the adolescent is in the process of finding an identity and immersing himself in his own psyche, trauma that has not been dealt with play an important role in adolescence.34

This is also the reason why there is an increasing risk in adolescence of developing depression and dying as a result of suicide.35 Suicide has been the second leading cause of death during adolescence in Germany for years after death in a traffic accident. The hospital diagnosis statistics from the Federal Statistical Office show that 28.8% of all fatal injuries in 15 to 20-year-olds in 2010 were caused by suicide. The suicide rate is 2.5 times higher than the rate of home and leisure accidents. For 10 to 14 year olds, this rate is roughly the same as the suicide rate: out of 100,000 children of this age, 0.7 die of suicide.36 Self-harm cannot be statistically derived from hospital diagnoses. The only exception is deliberate drug intoxication. This shows that a particularly large number of girls between the ages of 15 and 19 poison themselves in this way, out of 100,000 girls there are around 130.37 The self-harm should also be understood as an attempt to deal with the trauma. First, they are to be understood as a relief from the internal pressure resulting from the trauma by functioning as a valve through which pressure is released.38 Second, they act as a strategy for coping with dissociation, which in turn is a strategy for coping with trauma.39 Dissociation is the splitting off of reality that cannot be tolerated by the inner soul state. This reality is split off from perception, for example by viewing violence, neglect and abuse as imagined, living in one's own fantasy world or actively leaving one's body. The ability to dissociate is innate and the process is subconscious in order to survive a threat and humiliation. In the long run, however, dissociation causes people to lose touch with their bodies and feel dead.

The youth phase is therefore not only a time in which the foundations for the future are laid, but also the time in which one draws a first summary and unresolved trauma comes up again. This shows the sensitivity and importance of this phase of life.

3. Youth and Society

As mentioned above, it is the developmental task of young people to find their place in society. It is therefore important to look at youth in a social context. This is done in point 3.1. Point 3.2 is about the influence of social changes on youth welfare.

3.1 Youth in a social context

Young people are a group neglected by society.

Social expectations of young people are high, and with increasing social upheaval and the pluralization of society, it has become even more difficult for young people to meet these expectations.

The experts in the field of youth welfare agree that young people are neglected by society. So writes Professor Dr. Dieter Baacke, former lecturer at Bielefeld University, in the foreword to his book “The 13 to 18 year olds. Introduction to the problems of adolescence ”:“ It is my conviction that it is one of adults - out of fear, out of insecurity? - neglected age group that is decidedly dependent on loyalty and love. "40

According to Achim Schröder and Ulrike Leonhardt, this neglect is shaped by the post-modern era, in which there has been increasing indifference.41 The problems of the younger generation are not seen, instead the demands on them are increasing.

Adults expect a lot from young people in terms of social demands and the relationship between young and old.42 Young people should educate themselves and work for a better world. They should show respect and helpfulness towards older people.43 Although this is often successful in individual contacts and there are both positive and personal contacts between young and old, young people as a group are viewed negatively. There are stereotypes and clichés about from adults, which lead to a negative perception of young people in public spaces.44 Older people sometimes move across the street to avoid a group of young people. The 2006 Shell study came to the conclusion that the confrontations in public are almost ritual in nature and that it is typically not about criminal acts or deliberately rude behavior on the part of young people, but rather about simple rules of conduct. The smallest, sometimes unintentional mistakes made by young people are viewed in public by older people as disrespect. For example, a group of young people is often not asked politely to make room, but rather is reprimanded by the elderly for not avoiding the way.45 According to the Shell study, the majority of young people have respect for the elderly and their achievements.46

The political disregard for youth interests illustrates the neglect of this group. The 2006 Shell study came to the conclusion that young people are not seen as an important political target group and that their wishes are hardly taken into account by politicians.47 At the federal level, there is a right to vote from the age of 18, which turns young people under this age limit into minors. Participation is thus prevented. The majority of voters are significantly older and therefore more interesting for parties for reasons of election tactics.48 Young people are rarely asked for their opinion. "Childhood and adolescence is the >> before << from the point of view of the citizen who is always an adult."49

Since young people are so rarely asked for their opinion, it is difficult for them to articulate their interests. There is a disenchantment with politics that is only broken by a few individuals.50 The superiority of the elderly is exacerbated by demographic change: The proportion of older people is increasing, while the proportion of younger people is falling and these are becoming an ever smaller minority.

In particular, young people from the lower classes are written off by society. Due to the unequal educational opportunities, they have poorer prospects of a good school leaving certificate and thus of an apprenticeship or a degree. Without good access to the labor market, they have no access to a regular income. In particular, the quarter of young people who attend secondary school is devalued by society, which attaches great importance to promoting high school students due to the lack of skilled workers.51 Working-class children have nine times less chance of attending grammar school than children from the upper classes.52 Children with a migration background and with a low socio-economic status usually stay at secondary school, sit more often and often leave school without a qualification.53 "This creates a group of structural educational losers who are materially, health-wise and socially disadvantaged and who have few chances of attaining a satisfactory position in society"54

The society in which young people have to find a place today is characterized by numerous upheavals and pluralization, so that it is difficult to find one's own identity. Young people have to find their own point of view and make their own decisions in a world that is constantly changing. The society is characterized by the economization with economic demands. Everyone should do something to be productive. We also live in a risk society.55 Risks are individualized and each individual is made responsible for his or her fate. Young people are also made responsible for their problems.

3.2 Social changes in their impact on youth welfare

Society is constantly changing and with it youth welfare.

The biggest changes are currently caused by the financial crisis with the resulting austerity policy and the general shift in focus to early intervention.

The national debt and the debt brake ensure an austerity policy that has a strong impact on the finances of the youth welfare office. As of December 31, 2010, the total public debt was € 2,012 billion. The federal debt amounted to 1,287 billion euros, that of the federal states to 600 billion euros, that of the municipalities to 124 billion euros and that of the social security system to half a billion euros.56

The federal government wanted to save 80 billion euros by 201457The savings should primarily relate to the social sector.58 “In the hierarchy of government spending, social spending is at the bottom. They are the first to be seen in government austerity programs [...] "59because they serve the least economic growth.60 In order to save money, there have been some restructuring measures in recent years, such as the relocation of open child and youth work to afternoon programs in schools in some federal states61 and the new, strengthened socio-spatial orientation.62 New software in the youth welfare office, such as LogoData software for youth welfare in some cities and Jus-It in Hamburg, should also promote cost awareness among social workers. The price of help is usually shown directly to the cent and the cheapest offer of help is listed at the top.63

From the perspective of social experts, all these restructuring measures have in common that they are sold as technically necessary improvements and not as cost-saving measures.64 Professors Heinz-Jürgen Damme and Norbert Wohlfahrt are of the opinion that “[…] one of the peculiarities of the social space-related modernization discussion is that objective reasons - here the will to save costs in the area of ​​social services - are presented and treated as technical innovations that are actually long overdue and now finally have to be brought to a breakthrough. "65 In order to save costs, it is now planned in some federal states to reallocate part of the budget for assistance with education to social-spatial offers. This was done in Hamburg at the beginning of 2012.66 10 million euros were added to the 2.4 billion budget67 taken for help in education. From 2013 an additional 10% will be cut in child and youth work in Hamburg.68

This makes it clear how much the municipalities are concerned to save money on aids for upbringing, but present this as an improvement. For young people, however, this results in a lack of help, which is discussed in more detail in point 5.

In social work there are always trends that are socially influenced, such as drug aid in the 1970s and housing aid during the housing shortage in the 1980s.69 At the moment, early intervention is the trend and there is a shift in focus to encouraging younger and younger children.70 It was recognized that early funding reduces or even prevents many development problems in advance. Funding programs as early as possible were expanded in line with this knowledge. The problem with this, however, is that there is a "[...] one-sided [n] concentration [...]"71 came to younger children, with the widespread assumption that after a certain age it is too late to do anything good. As a result, older children and especially young people are given up and marginalized.72 You will not receive the necessary help, but, as stated in point 3.1, will only be seen as the cause of problems.

4. Youth and environment

The social environment of young people is determined by their family and friends. These two factors influence each other. Depending on how you grow up in the family, you usually find friends with similar problems. Point 4.1 looks at the area of ​​the family, while point 4.2 deals with the area of ​​the peer group.

4.1 Emotional neglect in the family

Emotional neglect has only been known as a child welfare risk since the middle of the 20th century.73 Research by Spitz, Bowlby and Harlow at the time showed that the lack of emotional affection has a decisive influence on the psychological development of children. As a result, social and emotional care were recognized as the basic needs of children.74

There are different forms of neglect: physical neglect, emotional neglect, cognitive, educational neglect and insufficient supervision.75 In practice, however, these forms are so closely related that they can hardly be separated from one another. If parents do not care for their children emotionally by giving them no warmth or emotional feedback, then they usually do not advocate that their child goes to school regularly or are bothered if their teenage child is out for an inappropriately long time is. Hence, it can be said that emotional neglect usually includes cognitive, educational neglect and insufficient supervision. Since adolescents can dress themselves and take a shower, physical neglect plays a subordinate role at this age. In the following, therefore, we will mainly deal with emotional neglect with all its facets.

Even if detachment from parents is a developmental task of adolescence, adolescents still need the love and attention of their parents. An increasing degree of independence and the growing importance of peers do not lead to the loss of the special importance of parents.76 "The relationship with their parents is changing, but for most young people it is true that [!] They are and feel emotionally connected to both their parents and their friends of the same age."77 Only young people who receive little or no attention from their parents orientate themselves exclusively towards their peers. However, they do so out of desperation and not voluntarily. Adolescents do not need to share their affection between friends and parents, as is often claimed by laypeople, as there is no limit to the amount.78 This is the conclusion of the Dutch developmental psychologist Rita Kohnstamm. According to their study, around 14% of all young people are neglected by their parents. However, it is impossible to say exactly how many young people are affected as there will always be a very high number of unreported cases.

There is not really a detachment from the parents, but rather a restructuring of the relationship towards an emotionally more independent relationship with less idealization, dependency and defiance.79

To understand the importance of emotional neglect in the family, one must first understand the role of parents and family and their importance.

According to Rita Kohnstamm, parents are also important in adolescence for three reasons: for detachment, for personal development and as a development factor.80

Parents are crucial to the individuation process of young people. Young people need their actions and lifestyle as an object of demarcation in order to achieve independent thinking and more autonomy.81 Young people have to deal with the ideals and goals of their parents in order to arrive at their own point of view.

Three processes have a strong influence on personality formation: the development of a strong self, a positive self-image and an integrated sense of identity.82 Parents play a key role in all of these processes. A strong personality develops in the form of a democratic upbringing in which the child is recognized as an individual and his or her opinion is taken into account.83 For this, the unconditional love of the parents is also necessary. When a child feels that they are only loved under certain conditions, they become more insecure about their behavior.84 Without parental affection and love, a negative self-image that is full of self-doubt develops. A positive self-image, and thus later also an integrated identity, can only be built through appreciation.

Finally “[…] [and] thirdly, the parents represent such an important part of the young person's social environment that [!] They have a moderating or reinforcing influence [!] On other factors that play a role in development . "85 A good home can cope with many problems, while problematic parents can also exacerbate minor problems or difficulties in a particular area of ​​life. For example, responding to school performance problems can further reduce adolescents' self-esteem or increase their ambition and problem-solving skills.

When parents neglect their teenage children, it has a big impact on them. They cannot develop a positive self-image or a strong self, so they have a low self-esteem and can be manipulated from the outside. Identity is also made more difficult by a lack of role models and discussion processes, which makes it almost impossible to fulfill the developmental tasks of adolescence. In addition, the young people are left alone with their problems, so that they get worse. Small problems, such as failures in sports or school, can turn into serious difficulties such as refusal to attend school.

Not only do parents have an important function, but also the family as a whole. The three-dimensional model according to Olson, Russell and Sprenkle indicates the three functions that a family should fulfill: cohesion, adaptation and communication.86 Cohesion means cohesion. The family should represent a group to which one feels emotionally and physically belonging and with which one can identify. A family does not fulfill this function if young people are neglected. The family members hardly have a feeling of togetherness and do not experience themselves as a unit. The young people are on their own.

In addition to cohesion, a family should give young people the chance to practice adaptation. Adaptation means adjustment and thus the adjustment to changing power relations and situations.87 Interaction patterns have to be adapted again and again within the family. You have to react differently to the wishes of the father than to the wishes of the little sister. However, in families in which young people are neglected, the interaction patterns are disturbed. Either there are hardly any interactions, the adolescents take over the interactions of the adults, or a family member is excluded from some interactions.

If neglected, the third dimension, communication, is particularly affected.88 The family should be the place where family members network compromises, listen to one another, and learn to express their needs and opinions.In the case of emotional neglect, precisely this task is not fulfilled: the needs of the young people are ignored and they are not listened to.

In the case of neglect within the family, the functions of a family are not fulfilled, so that young people are deprived of the opportunity to test themselves within these dimensions and to develop their skills.

The reasons for neglect in the family are many. Neglect often occurs across generations.89 The children of neglecting parents also neglect their children again. “Experiences of abuse and neglect in one's own childhood can lead to corresponding socio-emotional undesirable developments, which in connection with a lack of social support and difficult characteristics of the child lead to a deficient parenting attitude, which in turn affects the socio-emotional development of the child Has […]"90. The typical neglect families have no support either from their social environment or from their own families91so it's hard to break the cycle. This is not only due to socio-emotional undesirable developments, but also to the fact that neglect has entrenched a distorted and incomplete idea of ​​the needs of children and adolescents.92

Mentally ill parents are one cause of neglect. Particularly in severely depressed and chronically schizophrenic parents, there is a lack of emotional care93, because the parents are too busy with themselves to be contact persons for their children. It also happens that severely psychotic parents involve their children in their delusions and this leads to neglect. For example, reports from the school about unexcused absenteeism or behavioral problems can be interpreted as conspiracies or it is assumed that the children could feed on light.94 Even with an addiction, there is a threefold increase in the likelihood of neglect95because addicts parents are less sensitive to support and attention to their children. All your strength is needed for addiction.

Care control conflicts, i.e. situations in which negative feelings are triggered by contact with the child, can also lead to neglect.96 Care-control conflicts can arise if the child was conceived by rape or if the child is blamed for a separation.97 Emotional acceptance of the child is not possible in this way.

In general, difficult life situations for the parents in connection with limited coping abilities and low resilience can lead to an emotional undersupply of the children and adolescents.98 If the caregivers are overwhelmed with their everyday life, lack orientation, live in partner relationships burdened with violence and / or have intellectual limitations, then it is difficult for them to perceive the needs of their children. Studies have shown that most neglecting families live in relative poverty, poor housing, unemployment and partner conflicts.99

It can thus be stated that parents mostly neglect their children when they are overwhelmed with their own life and their own problems.

4.2 Emotional neglect in peer groups

The less affection and attention young people get from their parents, the more they turn to their peers.

But even in the peer groups of neglected young people there is sometimes a lack of affection and security.

Young people's friendships are very different from children's friendships. Child friendships are influenced and partly organized by adults. For example, appointments are made and people register for common leisure activities. Children are often friends with other children who live nearby, go to the same kindergarten, or whose parents know each other. At this age you are friends with those you can play well with.100

In adolescence, friends are chosen based on psychological characteristics of their suspected similarities to themselves.101 This is how these friendships differ from childhood friendships.

The psychological similarity in the friendships causes neglected young people to unite, who do not receive enough affection and recognition in their families. They try to get this recognition from the group from their self-portrayal in a group of young people. Strength, in particular, is a quality that both boys and girls can use to impress other group members. The lack of influence in the family results in adolescents striving to attain an influential position, at least within the group.102 This creates conflicts within the group to clarify the hierarchy and to show who is the strongest in the group.103

Almost all conflicts within the group and between other groups are about status among peers and thus about strength, respect and honor.104 If a young person's status has been downgraded as a result of an offensive or jealous situation, he or she must defend his or her reputation to avoid being perceived as cowardly and weak. It is again about "[...] [t] he staging of strength, hardness and willingness to use violence and the construction of a corresponding facade".105 It becomes an "[...] aggressive dominance shell [...]"106 built up that should cover up one's own vulnerability and weakness. By demarcating them from other groups, there is closeness in their own group. This often leads to arguments and violence between two groups.

In this way, fights for hierarchy and fights against other groups also occur in the peer groups. The winners from these fights receive recognition, but no security. You are not loved unconditionally as a person, but respected as a leader. The losers in the fights receive neither recognition nor security and are further neglected.

As mentioned above, 14% of adolescents turn to their friends of the same age for lack of attention. This can lead to mutual hindrance to development107for example by motivating the group to commit crimes or to abuse intoxicants. "In such cases, however, mainly young people are affected who, because of their personality or living conditions, are so insecure that [!] They are very afraid of rejection."108 A peer group therefore mainly has negative effects on young people who are affected by abuse and neglect and who therefore do not have a good self-esteem. Studies have shown that "[...] the experience of rejection significantly [correlates] with aggression / delinquency in the adolescents, which in turn increases the likelihood of joining a peer group in which alcohol and drugs are consumed [...]."109 This, in turn, can lead to serious drug and alcohol problems.

All in all, one can say that peer groups always have negative effects on young people when young people are insecure and easily manipulable due to family problems. Under these circumstances, the composition of their clique gives them no security, only violence and competitive behavior.

5. Youth in youth welfare

Neglect is a child's welfare endangerment, which must be intervened according to § 1666 Abs. 1 BGB, since the physical, mental and emotional development is foreseeably damaged. The care for the young person must have been repeatedly or constantly neglected, regardless of whether with or without intent.110 Furthermore, neglect is often accompanied by other forms of child welfare endangerment, as there is a high rate of overlap.111 In 45% of all cases of neglect, there is also emotional abuse.112 In addition, an American longitudinal study found that within four years, more than a third of the children who were originally exclusively neglected were exposed to an additional risk. For example, many neglected children developed behavioral problems to which the already overwhelmed parents reacted with abuse.113 The youth welfare service must therefore not only become active because of the neglect per se, but also to prevent an escalation of family life.

The following chapter deals with youth in youth welfare. Point 5.1 deals with young people as a neglected target group and point 5.2 with the lack of suitable assistance.

5.1 Youth as a neglected target group

There are almost no studies on neglect in adolescence. A quantitative and qualitative research project at the Technical University of Berlin examined family court proceedings for child welfare endangerment in 1996 and 1997. It was noticeable that the proceedings mainly affected younger children.114

There are significantly fewer procedures, especially from the age of 15. It is particularly noticeable that few threats from outside, i.e. from neighbors or teachers, are reported. Most negotiations were initiated when the young person concerned turned to the youth welfare office himself.115

Most cases of child welfare risk among young people concern girls with a migration background. These negotiations are about conflicts of autonomy.116 The proportion of girls in juvenile child welfare proceedings is 74.4%, the proportion of foreign girls in court proceedings in this age group is even 92%.117 Conversely, this means that there are hardly any negotiations about neglect in adolescence. For children under 3 years of age, neglect is the main cause of around 71% of child welfare risks. It is noticeable that their share decreases with increasing age. Among 15 to 18 year olds, neglect is cited as the main reason in only 15.4% of cases of child welfare.118 The reason for this is the assumption that young people have "[...] the necessary autonomy [...] to compensate for a lack of supply by their parents in a wide variety of areas through their own activities."119 However, this is only partially true. Adolescents can prevent physical neglect themselves. However, they are still dependent on the love and affection of their parents. Emotional neglect is just as bad for teenagers as it is for children.

The data on the child welfare negotiations make it clear that young people are neglected as a target group. Adolescents' risk situations are rarely reported and neglect among young people is not seen as a problem. The proceedings that came before the court were mostly carried out by the fact that young people turned to the ASD themselves. However, the social scientist Heiko Kleve found that young people often do not even know the tasks and support options of the ASD. “During the counseling sessions in the youth welfare office, however, I noticed that many clients were not in the least bit aware of the specific tasks of the social educational service as part of the youth welfare office. In my opinion, the responsibility for this cannot be attributed to the clients concerned. After all, one cannot demand that everyone who seeks advice in public socio-educational offices study the Child and Youth Welfare Act. "120 In the opinion of Heiko Kleve, there is a structural problem here, which means that young people know too little about their support options. This makes it clear once again how important it is to pay attention to young people, as they cannot get help on their own after all. As explained in detail in point 3.2, however, at the moment more attention is paid to smaller children and the focus is on early intervention. Young people thus remain a neglected target group.

5.2 Lack of suitable aids

Neglecting parents usually do not seek help on their own. Family education centers and advice centers are often only visited by parents with a higher level of education of their own accord.121

About half of the neglecting parents do not accept help from the ASD voluntarily.122 The reason for this is a lack of problem awareness due to the concentration on one's own difficulties. Help is then provided via the ASD and the family court in a coercive context123, initially mostly on an outpatient basis. However, it is extremely difficult to force warmth and emotionality. The supervising social workers have no choice but to provide information about the needs of the young people. In the case of smaller children, for whom there is also a lot of physical neglect, parents can be introduced to care in the form of changing diapers, bathing and feeding through family help. For teens, it's not about physical neglect as they are able to find food and shower for themselves. However, the supply of love and warmth can be difficult to learn until the causes of the deficiency are corrected. In the case of a care-control conflict, it is pointless to train the sensitivity of the parent, as the young person will still trigger negative feelings in the person concerned.124 In the case of mental illness and addiction in one of the parents, therapy can be sought through family support. However, this requires insight into the problem and motivation of the person concerned.125

The difficult work with neglecting parents also has an impact on the motivation of the social workers responsible. So "[...] the verbal inaccessibility of some neglecting parents [...] leads to reluctance and pessimism for some helpers with regard to what is feasible."126 The apathy-uselessness syndrome describes the situation in which helpers take on the displeasure, rejection and feelings of helplessness of their clients and then give up.127

Often, neglected adolescents have been neglected for a long period, if not their entire life, so that they have never been able to develop a close bond with their parents. If the neglect started early, then it is likely that basic trust was never built. In the course of the first years of life, the communicative and interactive experiences of a child develop into a bond of varying degrees that has far-reaching consequences.128 In the case of illness, insecurity, loneliness and discomfort of the infant, attachment behaviors of the attachment system are activated. Attachment behavior is any type of behavior that creates or maintains closeness to a provider, such as screaming, clinging, or smiling. These behaviors are aimed at closeness and security. If the caregivers react sensitively, a secure bond and basic trust is built up. If the child does not get a feeling of security, it develops other attachment patterns adapted to the caregivers in order to achieve a minimum level of attachment, such as excessive clinging or avoidance of closeness. The experiences are internalized and slowly put together to form an overall picture.129 This creates a "[...] lifelong [s] scheme for social relationships [...], which is referred to as an internal working model."130 This is a memory structure in which the stored interactions with the caregivers are anchored, and a "[...] template [...]"131with which expectations about future social interactions are formed.132 If the internal work model has already been set up in such a way that no more adult help is expected, this has two serious effects on youth welfare. On the one hand, it is very difficult for the supervising social worker to gain access to the young people concerned and to create a basis of trust for the joint work. As a rule, these young people will not seek help on their own, as they do not trust that someone really wants to help them. So in all likelihood they will not go to advice centers themselves and will not turn to the trusted teachers in their schools. On the other hand, it is very likely that this will not improve the relationship with the parents. If no bond and no relationship of trust was established up to adolescence, then this will certainly not happen at an age when the replacement should actually take place. Therefore, low-threshold offers that address young people directly appear to be the most suitable.Open child and youth work, for example, is a good method to offer young people a shelter and a contact point: A place close to them that takes care of their concerns, that they can help shape and where they can have a say and have a say.133 Contact to higher-threshold aids can be made via open facilities by referring to therapists or to the ASD.

However, the austerity policy has far-reaching consequences for open institutions: some institutions for open child and youth work have been closed or several smaller institutions have been merged into a larger one, so that the path to institutions has been lengthened and the low threshold has been lost. With the introduction of all-day schools, some open facilities were also relocated to schools. However, this leads to the fact that school-distant young people no longer want to visit these facilities.134


1 Schone, Reinhold et al. 1997: Children in Need. Neglect in early childhood and prospects for social work. , P.56

2 Cf. Münder, Johannes; Mutke, Barbara; Schone, Reinhold: 2000: Child welfare between youth welfare and justice: professional action in child welfare proceedings., P. 101

3 See Baacke, Dieter 2003: The 13-18 year olds. Introduction to the Problems of Adolescence, p.14

4 Section 7, Paragraph 1, Number 2, SGB VIII

5 See Schröder, Achim 2013: Young people, 14 to 20 year olds, p.111

6 See Ibid .; P.111

7 See Baacke, Dieter 2003: The 13-18 year olds. Introduction to the problems of adolescence; P. 41

8 See Drößler, Thomas 2013: Kids, the 10 to 14 year olds, p.105

9 See Schröder, Achim 2013: Young people, 14 to 20 year olds, p.112

10 Ibid., 112

11 See Ibid., P.113

12 Rose, Lotte 2013: Body and Beauty, p.217

13 See Kohlstamm, Rita 1999: Practical Psychology of Adolescence., P. 51

14 Ibid., P. 51

15 See Schröder, Achim 2013: Young people, 14 to 20 year olds, p.113

16 See Gerrig, Richard; Zimbardo, Philip 2008: Psychology, p.390

17 See Kohlstamm, Rita 1999: Practical Psychology of Adolescence. P.63

18 See Gerrig, Richard; Zimbardo, Philip 2008: Psychology, p.389

19 Baacke, Dieter 2003: The 13-18 year olds. Introduction to the problems of adolescence; P. 183

20 See Kohlstamm, Rita 1999: Practical Psychology of Adolescence. P.64

21 Cf. Göppel, Rolf: 2005: Das Jugendalter. Development tasks, development crises, forms of coping. P. 141- p. 157

22 See Ibid., P. 158- p. 177

23 See Ibid., P. 178- p. 197

24 See Ibid., P. 107- p. 157

25 See Ibid., Pp. 198-217

26 See Ibid., Pp. 218-246

27 See Ibid., P. 141

28 See Ibid., P.159

29 See Ibid., P. 140

30 See Ibid., P. 178

31 See Ibid., P. 197

32 See Ibid., P.198

33 Delfos, Martine F. 2011: What do you mean? Conversation with young people (13-18 years), p. 142

34 See Ibid., P.127

35 See Ibid., Pp. 127-132

36 Cf. Ellsäßer, Gabriele 2012: Accidents, violence, self-harm in children and adolescents 2012.

Results of the official statistics on injuries in 2010. Technical report, p.15

37 See Ibid., P.27

38 Heeg, Rahel 2009: Girls and Violence. Meanings of physical violence for female adolescents; P.165

39 See Backgrounde.html

40 Baacke, Dieter 2003: The 13-18 year olds. Introduction to the Problems of Adolescence., P.8

41 See Leonhardt, Ulrike; Schröder, Achim 1998: Youth cultures and adolescence: What young people are looking for and what they need., P.26

42 See Deutsche Shell Holding GmbH (Ed.) 2006: Jugend 2006. A pragmatic generation under pressure. P.274

43 See Ibid., P. 275

44 See Ibid., P.276

45 See Ibid., P. 277

46 See Ibid., Pp. 22-23

47 See Ibid., P. 281

48 Ibid., 283

49 Trautmann-Voigt, Sabine; Voigt, Bernd 2013: Youth Today. Between pressure to perform and virtual freedom., P. 58

50 Deutsche Shell Holding GmbH (Ed.) 2006: Youth 2006. A pragmatic generation under pressure. P.284

51 Ibid., 41

52 Ibid., Pp. 42, 65-67, 71

53 Ibid., P. 42

54 Ibid., 42

55 Cf., Trautmann-Voigt, Sabine; Voigt, Bernd 2013: Youth Today. Between the pressure to perform and virtual freedom. Giessen: Psychosozial-Verlag., P. 26

56 Compare.

57 See (status: 26.08.13)

58 Cf. Hinrichs, Knut 2010: The “practical compulsion” to save in the social area and the legal binding of youth welfare; P.16

59 Ibid .; P.17

60 See Ibid .; P.17

61 See (status: 28.8.12)

62 See (as of August 19, 2012)

63 See (as of August 28, 2012)

64 See Dahme, Heinz-Jürgen; Wohlfahrt, Norbert 2010: Social area and general social service. Theses on the current reform debate; P.29

65 Dahme, Heinz-Jürgen; Wohlfahrt, Norbert 2010: Social area and general social service. Theses on the current reform debate; P. 30

66 See (as of August 19, 2012)

67 See!87907/ (status: 20.8.12)

68 See!87907/ (status: 20.8.12)

69 Cf. Kreft, Dieter 2004: Fashions, trends and action orientations in social work since 1945 or: “Hits and flops” - what remains for today?

70 Cf. Panitzsch-Wiebe, Marion 2013: Older adolescents and young adults in the shadow of the younger generation.

71 Panitzsch-Wiebe, Marion 2013: Older adolescents and young adults in the shadow of the younger ones., P. 119

72 See Ibid., P. 119

73 See Galm, Beate; Hees, Katja; Kindler, Heinz 2010: Child neglect - understanding, recognizing and helping., S.11

74 See, Ibid., P. 11

75 cf., Ibid., p. 25

76 See Kohlstamm, Rita 1999: Practical Psychology of Adolescence, p. 199

77 Ibid., 199

78 See Ibid., P.199

79 See Göppel, Rolf 2005: Das Jugendalter, p. 141

80 See Kohlstamm, Rita 1999: Practical Psychology of Adolescence, p. 199

81 See Göppel, Rolf 2005: Das Jugendalter, p. 141

82 See Kohlstamm, Rita 1999: Practical Psychology of Adolescence, p. 199

83 See Ibid., P. 215

84 See Kohlstamm, Rita 1999: Practical Psychology of Adolescence, p. 73

85 Kohlstamm, Rita 1999: Practical Psychology of Adolescence, p. 199

86 See Kohlstamm, Rita 1999: Practical Psychology of Adolescence, p. 209

87 See Ibid., P. 209

88 See Ibid., P. 210

89 Cf. Poss, Martin 2005: Finding resources in working with neglecting families - (im) possible in socio-educational family support?., P. 563

90 Zobel, Martin 2005: Abuse and Neglect by Addicted Parents., P. 159

91 Cf. Poss, Martin 2005: Finding resources in working with neglecting families - (im) possible in socio-educational family support?., P. 565

92 See Galm, Beate; Hees, Katja; Kindler, Heinz 2010: Child neglect - understanding, recognizing and helping., P. 66

93 Cf. Deneke, Christiane 2005: Abuse and neglect by mentally ill parents., P. 146

94 Galm, Beate; Hees, Katja; Kindler, Heinz 2010: Child neglect - understanding, recognizing and helping., P. 74

95 See Zobel, Martin 2005: Abuse and neglect by addicted parents., P. 157

96 See Galm, Beate; Hees, Katja; Kindler, Heinz 2010: Child neglect - understanding, recognizing and helping., P. 75

97 See Ibid., P. 76

98 See Ibid., P. 76

99 See Ibid., P. 77

100 Göppel, Rolf: 2005: The Adolescent Age. Development tasks, development crises, forms of coping. P. 160

101 Fend, Helmut 2003: Developmental Psychology of Adolescence: A Textbook for Educational and Psychological Professions

102 Heeg, Rahel 2009: Girls and Violence. Meanings of physical violence for female adolescents; P. 189

103 Ibid., P. 196

104 Ibid., 196

105 Silkenbeumer, Mirja 2007: Biographical self-conceptions and femininity concepts of aggressive girls and young women; P. 287

106 Ibid., P. 287

107 Ibid., 190

108 Ibid., 190

109 Zobel, Martin 2005: Abuse and Neglect by Addicted Parents., Pp. 161-162

110 See Galm, Beate; Hees, Katja; Kindler, Heinz 2010: Child neglect - understanding, recognizing and helping., P. 23

111 See Ibid., P. 40

112 Cf. Münder, Johannes; Mutke, Barbara; Schone, Reinhold: 2000: Child welfare between youth welfare and justice: professional action in child welfare proceedings., P.103

113 See Galm, Beate; Hees, Katja; Kindler, Heinz 2010: Child neglect - understanding, recognizing and helping., P. 40

114 Cf. Münder, Johannes; Mutke, Barbara; Schone, Reinhold: 2000: Child welfare between youth welfare and justice: professional action in child welfare proceedings., P.97

115 Ibid., P. 97

116 Cf. Münder, Johannes; Mutke, Barbara; Schone, Reinhold: 2000: Child welfare between youth welfare and justice: professional action in child welfare proceedings., P. 85

117 See Ibid., P.85

118 Cf. Münder, Johannes; Mutke, Barbara; Schone, Reinhold: 2000: Child welfare between youth welfare and justice: professional action in child welfare proceedings., P. 101

119 Ibid., 111

120 Kleve, Heiko 2000: Social work without properties: Fragments of a postmodern professional and scientific theory of social work., P.123

121 See Galm, Beate; Hees, Katja; Kindler, Heinz 2010: Child neglect - understanding, recognizing and helping., P. 136

122 Cf. Münder, Johannes; Mutke, Barbara; Schone, Reinhold: 2000: Child welfare between youth welfare and justice: professional action in child welfare proceedings., P. 111

123 Cf. Poss, Martin 2005: Finding resources in working with neglecting families - (im) possible in socio-educational family support?., P. 562

124 Galm, Beate; Hees, Katja; Kindler, Heinz 2010: Child neglect - understanding, recognizing and helping., P.76

125 Cf. Poss, Martin 2005: Finding resources in working with neglecting families - (im) possible in socio-educational family support?.,., P. 562

126 Ibid., P. 561

127 Galm, Beate; Hees, Katja; Kindler, Heinz 2010: Child neglect - understanding, recognizing and helping., P.119

128 Dornes, Martin 2007: The emotional world of the child, p.50


130 Low, Richard J .; Zimbardo, Philip G. 2008: Psychology, p.391

131 ibid., 391

132 ibid., 391



End of excerpt from 109 pages