Understanding Behavior


The behavior of a person can usually be explained by that
person's state of mind. The external conduct is almost
always directly linked to internal emotions. Knowing this
fact is very beneficial to someone like a guidance
counsellor because it lets him or her almost "read" the
physchlogical state of a student based entirely on their
behavior. In Darlene's case her behavior has been very well
documented making the task of phsycological assesment a
much easier job. There are many facets to Dralene's
behavior, each revealing a different part of her state of
mind. Judging from the way she dresses and is groomed it
appears as if she comes from a family less wealthy than
most of the other children at her school. This has probably
been a factor in her sullen behavior. Because she can't
afford more expensive clothes, she has been put into a
different social class than most of her peers. It is known
that all humans have an emotional need to be "accepted" by
their peers but unfortunat for Darlene, being accepted is a
need that she has not satisfied due to her lack of wealth.
Darlene also expressed that this form "classism" against
her was apparent at sunday school. It was so great in fact
that she actually quit the classes to get away from the
sunday school "snobs".
It should come as no surprise that Darlene has also
expressed a desire to quit highschool as well. This may
also explain her reluctance to join any clubs and the way
she anticipates unfriendly reactions from people she meets.
Darlene's teachers agree that although Darlene has an above
average intellect, she still only aquires average marks. I
believe this problem can be traced to her parents. It si
known that Darlene's parents keep Darlene in 6 days of the
week, and when they do let her out she must be home at ten.
It is also known that Darlene must do alot of housework on
the weekends if she wants to get her weekly allowance and
that her parents do not approve of her friends. Darlene's
poor pe nce in school may very well be Darlene's way of
"getting back" at her parents. By getting average marks she
is trying to tell her parents that keeping her in and being
so restrictive of her social activities won't help her
school work, it will only make it worst. I will assume that
Darlene also feels like her parents don't pay enough
attention to her. Both her parents probably work,
explaining why Darlene has so many responsibilities at
home, and neither of them likely have much time to spend
with their daughter. Darlene would also like more freedom
to do go out and choose friends. The physological needs
Darlene lacks are social acceptance, attention from her
parents and freedom. If I were to advise Darlene on a
course of action it would be to discuss the problem with
her parents and not to try and hurt them by doing poorly in
school because that is not hurting her parents, it is only
hurting her. I would tell her that the only person in the
world Darlene can change is herself. I would also tell
Darlene that any peer that does not like her based solely
on how much money she has is not worth having as a friend.
I would tell her to ignore people who treat her badly
becuase of her lack of wealth and eventually they will stop
annoying her because they will not get any reaction from
her. Darlene will have to work on her attitude though, so
she can be more sociable and more accepted. 


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