Saturday, January 30, 2016

Why is This Generation Depressed?

Everyone I know is depressed, anxious, or has some other mental health problem. This didn't seem to be a problem when our parents were this age. Was it because now people are more willing to admit to their mental health problems? Is it because of less stigma around mental health in this generation? Or is mental health actually more of a problem now? The article below argues not.
Studies and have shown "millennials could be the most depressed generation at work" (Kristie Eshelman, Millennials...). We get it, we're depressed and stressed and anxious. But why? I've done some research and the answer is unclear. "Why So Many People Are Stressed and Depressed" says technology is not at fault. I beg to differ. Here's a list I've compiled of why I think this generation (millennials/teens) suffers from so many mental health problems:
  1. More rigorous high schools, causing more stress at a younger age
  2. The media feeding us unrealistic beauty standards, leading to insecurity
  3. Less face-to-face talking due to technology
  4. Increasing unrest in the workplace and in school - not being satisfied with sitting at a desk all day
  5. Desire to have a fulfilling life - we work harder in school to get a better job so we can do what we want in our lives
  6. Overpopulation - more competition to get into better colleges
  7. Pressure to get a college degree
  8. Helicopter parents - kids don't learn how to think for themselves from a young age and are stranded when they go off to college and into the real world
  9. College's rising standards - kids are "groomed to be academic overachievers, but become, in reality, an emotional underachiever" (Brooke Donatone and Slate, Why are so many...)
This is my take on it from the standpoint of someone who's in the middle of it all. But what I really want you to take out of this is: Adults, you may think your child isn't suffering, but if they ask for help, give it to them. Be more attuned to depression and mental health in your children.

Source:
http://psychcentral.com/blog/archives/2010/03/04/why-are-so-many-teens-depressed/, 
https://generationopportunity.org/articles/2015/05/26/millennials-could-be-the-most-depressed-generation-at-work-but-why/,
https://www.washingtonpost.com/national/health-science/why-are-so-many-millennials-depressed-a-therapist-points-the-finger-at-mom-and-dad/2014/01/06/19f4f1c4-69a1-11e3-8b5b-a77187b716a3_story.html

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