Sometimes it seems like a right of passage for young men to act recklessly. Anyone who’s raised a teenage boy and girl will tell you there are definite differences between the two sexes.
As young men get older they’re increasingly drawn to interests that are inherently risky. It’s a response to changes in the brain during adolescence. There’s a growth period that makes young people more inclined to act on their impulses and try new experiences.
The National Youth Risk Behavior Survey has found that teens continue to take part in some risky activities despite numerous public service campaigns and programs. The older boys get the more likely they are to also break the law.
If you’re a young man, it’s best to steer clear of certain interests that will only increase risky behavior.
Experimenting With Drugs
We’ve all heard the jokes about experimenting with drugs in college, but the addiction experts at Landmark Recovery say it’s no laughing matter. Some people have a genetic predisposition that makes them more susceptible to addiction. For those individuals, it doesn’t take much for an addiction to form.
Unlike other bad habits and risky behavior, drug use can have dire consequences on many levels. Men tend to be drawn to hard narcotics like heroin that can cause serious physical harm. Young men are encouraged to seek professional help at a specialized facility if they’ve become dependent on drugs. Today, there are facilities with programs designed specifically for treating addiction in young men.
Another bad habit that can begin in college is bar hopping. As soon as most guys turn 21 years old the first thing they do is have a legal drink at the bar. It becomes a common meeting place for young men and women to meet up and socialize.
These group settings are far from ideal. Peer pressure and group think can make matters worse when young men get together for a booze-filled night. Neurologists have discovered that when peer pressure occurs, the brains of young men fire up in regions associated with risk and reward. And of course, the first thing to go while drinking alcohol is judgment. Each beer makes the group more brazen and each trip to a new bar increase the chances of something bad occurring.
There’s a reason why auto insurance is more expensive for young men. Young men tend to push fast cars to their limit and drive more aggressively than most people. In general, men are statistically twice as likely to die in an auto accident compared to women. Young guys are also more likely to:
– Not wear their seat belt
– Drive impaired
– Go over the speed limit
– Be involved in a car accident
– Injured in an accident
– Get tickets for driving violations
– Have their licensed suspended
Whether it’s doing donuts in a parking lot or taking hairpin turns on a hillside, men get a rush out of getting behind the wheel. This risky behavior being dangerous, it can also create financial difficulties. For instance, if your license is suspended it can create difficulties getting to and from work.
The only thing more risky than driving fast cars is driving fast motorcycles. The overwhelming majority of motorcyclists are men, many of which are in their 20s. That’s one reason the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety (IIHS) found 91% of motorcycle fatalities involve men.
Men like machines that go fast and have an element of danger. Few things are more fast and dangerous than a young motorcycle rider on the highway. Young men who are thinking about getting a motorcycle should at the very least take a safety training course to learn proper handling.
A small segment of men don’t get thrills from speeding around in sports cars or fist fighting for a woman’s favor. Instead they get their kicks from jumping out of airplanes, diving with sharks and clearing 30’ jumps. That’s right, we’re talking about extreme sports. The activities that only the gutsiest, dumbest young guys will try because they’re so dangerous.