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Teenagers today

Discussion in 'Other Policies' started by palefrost, Aug 17, 2006.

  1. palefrost

    palefrost New Member

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    Am I missing something?

    When did it all of a sudden become the cool thing to be depressed? I don't mean like my own "I'm gaining a few pounds depression" but these "my life sucks now, always sucked, and always will suck" depressions, or these "my mom and dad say I should seek help" depressions.

    When did it all of a sudden become the cool thing to go around telling the entire world that you think of yourself as an asshole, but it's just because you don't know what's wrong with you, and life just sucks right now blah blah blah

    When did it all of a sudden become the cool thing do do to be apathetic as much as possible, and yet every so often seem like you're on the verge of a break down?

    I've seen different teenagers on different forums who tell similar stories. Now, am I just naive as hell? Have times changed? Were there always so many kids like this?

    I'm the kind of person that I never really minded when someone felt they needed to let it out on a forum before. God knows I do it sometimes. But it's like it's become TRENDY for these kids to be... I don't know, I won't say I see them go as far as being suicidal, but MAN.

    Any thoughts? Is this just part of today's changing world? Is it just cries for attention?
  2. OneofaKind

    OneofaKind New Member

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    How much do they mean it when they say it though.

    I suspect it might just be an expression that says don't worry to everyone else
  3. sarah

    sarah New Member

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    I agree with the fact that teenagers today are seemingly far more depressed than they were in earlier years. The thing that gets me is, are these kids truly depressed, or are they acting out in order to get the attention of their parents and/or peers? I personally believe that it is the latter, and not true psychological trauma that is causing these adolescents to act out the way they are.
    Think of it this way… if you are truly depressed and feel suicidal do you
    A) Act like these teenagers are and publicize it to everyone in the immediate vicinity.
    B) Tell no one and stew in your own misery.
    C) Kill yourself.
    D) Talk to your family and/or a trusted person and ask for help.
    Whichever you would personally choose, I can tell you that more likely than not a person who has real psychological issues will not act out in such a manner as these teens.
  4. Goddess

    Goddess New Member

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    I liken the whole rise in depression, among both teens and adults, to the rise in openly gay people. The awareness of depression and what it means leads people who are feeling what they think is depression to be "openly" depressed and seek help. Like with homosexuality, there aren't necessarily more gay people out there, but rather more people who are open about it or experiment with it. In a way, a lot of people are "experimenting" with depression. If you look at the laundry list of depression symptoms, normal people can and will relate to most of those feelings at one time or another, especially during the teen years where disillusionment is at its finest.

    Teenagers are often just coming in to emotion and dealing with having to relate to the world on their own terms. At the same time as trying to figure themselves out, they have to deal with a lot of social pressures of fitting in or rebelling. It's easy for a teenager to learn about depression and see themselves reflected in the symptoms. Depending on the situation, depression can be used for either fitting in or rebelling.
  5. dong

    dong New Member

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    Good point Goddess. The same can also be noted in the rise in such things as autism and ADHD etc. although it must be noted then that we have to be aware of the values and the parameters that influence the definitions of such terms.

    What we're seeing here is indeed the integration of an awareness into a socialisation process. That is, the awareness of this thing called depression (but only a superficial awareness to many), and its manifestation as a social tool. Populations go around in reactionary cycles ("to and fro with the varying tide...set themselves to rot with motion"), so on the various forums we've been seeing a slightly more recent outbreak of the whole "emo" deal, especially with the (often puerile) habit of profiling.

    This said, I'd like to draw attention to the use of the term "normal" and "depressed" as if one excluded the other, (depending on what you meant by normal). I think this is the kind of understanding that adolescents play on- because building an individual identity somehow entails having properties that are weird and unusual (but mostly not overly so otherwise you might get totally ostracised!) I gotta cringe at the way I said that though cos it's fully oversimplistic.

    Because the behavior is catching on though, and because the study of depression and other psychological phenomena is in an area where cognition, affection (emotion) and behavior all interact, it's very difficult to tell just what is what- who needs help and who is being an attention grabber. In fact in some cases it'd probably be impossible to tell the difference as they can be one and the same. However because it's so much de rigeur these days, often these things can be dismissed and rejected upon the whim of the masses.

    To directly answer the original question, it's all the above. Regardless of the semantic, vernacular or the exploitation of these, it does describe real effect, and it also involves a social activity. Divining how much of what this is would probably be best done on a case-by-case basis.
  6. Goddess

    Goddess New Member

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    Of course the term "normal" is ephmeral and entirely subjective, but I was referring to people who are not and do not claim to be depressed, and still run the gamut of emotions attributed to depression. In making an argument, there are some generalizations that eke out no matter how much care we take in addressing all the perspectives, and I would argue that without some suppositions, there will be no basis for argument. I tend to run philosophically on the relativist side of things, but even then it's impossible to write about every individual's worldview.
  7. dong

    dong New Member

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    Cool, I was hoping this was the case. Can't tell what other people would read into it. Personally, I present with mood swings equivalent to Bipolar II but I would be very loath to actually be diagnosed with such, because this may cause people to disregard the arbitrary nature of diagnosis and definitions when psycholigical, medical and psychosocial mechanisms interact in what can be loosely described as a series of spectra. Also, I doubt most people would be aware of the whole plethora of varying presentations (bipolar, cyclothymia, psychosis, schizophrenia etc. etc. etc.) so much confusion can be expected in this regard too.

    I'm not a relativist per se (not in the worrying way the majority of pseudo-intellectual nihilist youth are) but I do endorse an awareness of necessary subjectivity. Actually I think the transcendentally ideal/empirically real dichotomy makes most sense on a basic level.

    Also, it's so easy to take foundationalism for granted because it's so prevalent in our culture (I feel strange even saying that!)
  8. sarah

    sarah New Member

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    I feel more or less the same way Dong.
  9. Brandon

    Brandon New Member

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    Hold on while I yank out my dictionary and skim through Wikipedia.
  10. sarah

    sarah New Member

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    aww... you need a dictionary, soo cute lol
  11. Brandon

    Brandon New Member

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    I was kidding.
  12. sarah

    sarah New Member

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    So Was I there Killer... You'll Be OK
  13. baileym1

    baileym1 New Member

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    I think we are much more aware of our feelings and able to talk about them than we have been in past generations. Many of us are hypersensitive about everything. It makes sense that teenagers would be too.
  14. dong

    dong New Member

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    Heh, by "pseudo-intellectual relativist nihilist" or whatever it was I said to *confuse* Brandon, I refer to this really worrying trait among the younger university students. There's this general blase attitude going on, or perhaps a sense of philosophical apathy, where the kids argue that nothing means anything, and nothing is worth anything etc. It's an over-reaction of sorts, and perhaps it might be part of the rebel complex, and part masking and filling in the gaps. Either way, the view is accepted as inaccurate and very...well...useless.
  15. Brandon

    Brandon New Member

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    Sorry, I like being a smartass from time to time. I did understand what you wrote though!

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