Is the Slow Maturation of the Prefrontal Cortex Correlated with Empathy?
Empathy is a trait we are all born with, this is because we are social creatures and have evolved to survive and thrive in small communities. Social conditioning determines if teenagers will learn to listen to their empathetic voice (consciousness) or otherwise.
I know that there are a significant number of research studies that indicate the prefrontal cortex is the last to develop and doesn’t become fully formed until a person is in his or her mid twenties. As a result of theses studies, the popular interpretation is that due to an immature prefrontal cortex, teenagers are more apt to make irrational decisions, and have a poor sense of empathy.
I disagree with this popular interpretation…
by Ugo Uche, M.S., L.P.C.