YAB Teens are talking about what’s stressing our teens, what Schools and Parents NEED to know, AND what they SHOULD do.

What is causing you the most stress right now?

Right now, I find myself the most stressed about my future and the unknown.  With the school year over, it’s time to start focusing on AP testing and college applications now that I’m a junior.  But, I feel so lost.  I am not receiving the guidance that I need.  That’s what stresses me out the most.

SAT, ACT, college applications, and comparing myself with my classmates is causing me the most stress right now.  It’s hard to be told “just” worry about doing your “best” when you’re also told that life and college is a competition.

School, AP’s and standardized testing, summer plans, work and then the start of the next school year.

Mostly just thinking about college admissions and standardized testing.  It stresses me out to even think about it even though I know I’ll be able to get in somewhere.

Now that I am graduating more and more my stress is coming from my Parents and sometimes friends.  Now that I am out of school, there is pressure to keep up on lots of chores and a social life.

Each and every day I am surrounded by teens similar and different to me at school.  However, we all find common ground where we experience the most stress… school brings about the majority of stress and anxiety. Balancing homework, tests, sports, clubs and just the thought of the future puts a lot on teens shoulders.

 The main stressors for teens today are school and grades – students are constantly pushed to get good grades and do homework and what is lost is actually understanding and getting an education – this needs to change.

Are you able to talk to someone about your stress and anxiety and if so, who? Do you have a way to alleviate it?  If yes, what is that way?

Many times, I turn to friends to vent about my stress and anxiety.  They are the people I feel most comfortable confiding in.  However, with them having their own stresses and anxieties, it’s difficult for them to help me get through mine.  So, recently I’ve found sports to be the best way for the me alleviate my stress.

For the most part I talk to with my friends and sometimes my Mom.  I like driving or just getting out of the house when I’m stressed.

I can usually talk to my friends about it because they are also going through the same things. I sometimes can talk to my Parents but usually they just don’t understand.

I use a journal to cope, instead of talking to others.  I like to spend time alone to alleviate stress.

Yes, with my best friend.  Not all the time though because a lot of the time it’s me helping her out.  I usually alleviate stress by drawing.

What is your biggest concern going into Summer and Grad party season?

My biggest concern would have to be the pressure other kids put on their peers and friends to party.  Along with that, I am concerned that adults are letting kids get by without any consequences when choose to drink and do other illegal substances.

There is a big increase — a lot of partying, drinking and drug use.

Nothing crazy.  I have a good group of friends and I feel that I’m a good fighter against peer pressure.

Mostly being able to say “no” when things are offered to me even thought it makes me look and feel “uncool”.

What are your schools doing to address the heightened partying?  What should they know?

I honestly do not see my school going out of its way to address the situation.  I wish the administration would make a bigger effort to stop drinking/drug use especially at school events instead of turning a blind eye.  And, if they suspect something or hear about something they  should speak up.

Teachers tend to say, “make good choices”.  It’s hard for schools to do anything besides provide information and warnings.

The schools don’t do much to address (summer) partying.  I think they should tell kids how to be safe in the summer and encourage them NOT to participate in “partying”.

They should know that alcohol and drugs will find a way in, so proper surveillance is very necessary.

I don’t know if they are doing anything that is truly effective.  I just know that kids get suspended but it’s more of a bonus for them not to go to school.

I have no clue what my school is doing.

What would you like to see or hear from Parents about this?  What do Parents need to do or know?

Above all, Parents need to learn to put their foot down.  You aren’t your kids friend.  You are there to keep them safe and guide them down the right path.  Be involved in your kids’ life and don’t allow them to do anything that isn’t okay with you.

Parents can push their kids and they can have high expectations BUT hey need to be supportive and show unconditional love.  Just having a parent who cares and is willing to help can be the greatest relief/de-stressor.

I think Parents should watch their kids and not support/accept any drinking.  I think Parents need to know that partying definitely increases over the summer break.

I would like them to spend more time and effort understanding mental illness because that’s where many problems stem from.

I think Parents need to know that most teens have either experimented or regularly use substances, even if they seem like a student who wouldn’t.

What’s your influence to be substance free in the midst of so much self/parent/school and peer pressure?

In this day and age, it’s no challenge to get your hands-on substance.  However, for me, I have always been inspired by my future to keep me away from those things.  I have dreams that I am determined to reach.

My influence is myself and my future to not succumb to peer pressure and just do what I want to do.

I care about my well-being and health as well as my future.  I strive to make my family, my friends and myself proud J

My main influence is my future.  I want to get into a good college and I don’t want anything to interfere with that.

My influence is school and my future.  I have seen so many of my peers give up good grades, college and their intelligence for drugs and alcohol.

What else is on your mind?

For any other kids out there, I want to remind you to find something that inspires you.  And when you  start to deviate from the right path, use that inspiration to give you the strength to get back on your way to your goals.

Don’t let event the closest to you control your energy.

Teens are really struggling with all the pressure that is put on them.  I hope that Parents can and will help them and not put more pressure on them.

Teens really need help! A lot of us say we are “fine”, but in reality, we may feel like we’re drowning.  Plus, it always seems like everyone around us is staying so strong, so we feel like we have to be strong too.

I wish Parents were more aware of the importance of mental health and would make sure that their kids are emotionally healthy.

I think it is extremely important to look at mental health as the root of the problem and should be treated as such.  Time and again peers have told me they use because of stress, anxiety or depression.

#teensaretoostressed

#mentalhealthneedsattention

#schoolsandparentsneedtohelp

#teensstrivingforabrightfuture