Raging hormones, pressure to perform at school, college admission, career choices, relationships, and social acceptance – being a teen is no easy job. And parenting teens is even tougher! Just a single misstep and you could significantly dent your child’s personality. A new year has started and brings new challenges to the teens of today. We, as parents need to identify the issues, challenges and risks our teens have to face and help them cope up and make better choices.
New year, tougher challenges
The world is no more a safe place, thanks to us, humans. You turn on the TV and certainly you don’t want to live on the planet anymore. Three killed here, a dozen robbed there – it’s a jungle out there. And it’s just not the news, look around you; who’s there to trust? But the show must go on and so we go on living – one day at a time. Our kids go out and communicate with the world outside even when we’d like to keep them protected!
They make friends, make mistakes, observe and learn. But the learning curve is not always linear. There are some dreadful, awful mistakes that teens tend to make that keep chasing them for a lifetime. Wrong choices and their haunting consequences could really make it all so difficult for our kids to cope up with.
Coming to terms with facts
Yes, the facts are blood-curdling but we need to acknowledge the intensity of issues that our teens face today. The challenges teens face are too many, but the gravest of them could be one of the following:
Teens tend to be reckless and adventurous, but this recklessness and carelessness can cause huge losses even fatality. Over speeding and drunk driving being the main causes of teen driving casualties with texting while driving being the leading cause. According to a study by Cohen Children’s Medical Center, more than 3,000 teens die each year in crashes caused by texting while driving in US alone.
A lot of things could get your teen involved in drugs and liquor abuse. It could be rejection in class or some hate/threatening messages or pure adventurism. According to National Institute on Drugs Abuse (NIDA), by the 8th grade, 28% of adolescents have consumed alcohol, 15% have smoked cigarettes, and 16.5% have used marijuana.
Teen pregnancy – a trend that is on the steady decline but still hasn’t quite diminished – poses a great threat to the teens and country’s economy. It’s a major reason behind the college-dropout rate and also causes a dent in the economy with raised healthcare expense. Stats show that about 820,000 teens become pregnant each year while 25 percent of teen mothers have a second child within two years of the first birth.
Bullying is ever on the rise and it really disturbs the mental cognitions of your teen. Despite it being one of the very common issues that teens face, very few parents get to know about it. Almost 20 percent of U.S. students in grades 9-12 reportedly have experienced bullying or are feeling bullied and only 20-30 percent of students who are bullied tell adults or authorities about their situations.
And the challenges that teens face don’t stop here. There are many other issues that they have to deal with and most of the times on their own. In the next part of this post, we’d share some more issues that top the list of most disturbing trends challenging teens in 2015 and a possible way out. Keep reading!