Parents/society puts stress on teens

Branden Alford, Editor-in-Chief

A man and his son sit on the couch in their humble domicile. Surrounding the son, physics textbooks and a calculus assignment sit piled on top of work schedules, theatre work days, and his laptop open to college applications and scholarship essay after scholarship essay.

    His father doesn’t understand why the son is always freaking out about his crazy life. After all, he did the exact same things while he was in high school and managed just fine.

    According to the American Psychological Association, the world renowned experts on everything mental, his father is very wrong.

    In a 2013 study, comparing the reported stress rates of working adults and teens in high school, teens ranked over one point higher on a 10-point scale, a whole two points higher than what is considered healthy. Often stress levels this high will lead to anxiety or depression, very serious mental conditions with very real consequences.

   What this also means is that teens during the school year are, as a matter or fact, more stressed than their parents were.

   Another source of the anxiety  epidemic in America is the systemic inability of parents to teach their children how to handle tension in healthy ways.

   One senior said, “Last weekend, I came home to find my mom crying because of the stress she was under. She is my role model in life. How am I supposed to learn how to handle things in my life if my mom doesn’t even know how to handle it?”

   This inability to manage the ever-rising levels is not something new, according to Norman Anderson, Ph. D, the CEO of the American Psychological Association. He states that psychologists have seen this epidemic coming for generations, as generation after generation fails to learn how to handle issues.

   Also, young people in America have grown up in a culture that over sensualizes happiness and degrades any other emotion on every social media platform known to man.

   Junior Casey Withers said, “Every time I look at Snapchat stories or pictures on Instagram and see all those happy people, it makes me think that is how everyone feels all the time. Any time that I’m not as happy as those people, I worry that something is very wrong and I stress out about it, trying to figure out why I am not that happy.”

   According to a, the leading blog site for modern psychologists, American parents are also unable to let their kids lose or think that they are not the best. This creates an entitled nation that is unable to accept anything but being the top without any work expected from them at all.

    Parents throw out meaningless and unrealistic praise that puts pressure on their kids to live up to their parents’ expectations. This can lead to a crippling fear of failure or rejection, the leading cause for stress in American teenagers.

   The most shocking thing about all this, according to the American Psychological Association, is how few American teenagers believe tension will impact their long-term physical and mental health.

   “The worst thing about stress is that the behaviors it causes multiply. Often, students…will not sleep enough, becoming more tired each and every day. When they don’t sleep enough, they are biologically less likely to handle [things] in healthy ways. This also carries over to every other part of their life.”

    Stress and anxiety are very serious problems in society today that will only be solved by a collective effort.

Alli Dunlop
Three students ignore each other while viewing devices and doing homework.