Tag: Teenagers and Adolescence

Teen Girls Talk About Puberty. ‘We Don’t Turn Into Aliens.’

Adolescence isn’t easy. With puberty comes immense mental and physical change — and a self-consciousness about how you and your body are observed, treated and understood. My previous Op-Docs shed light on what can be isolating about childbirth and menopause. But what’s left unsaid begins even earlier, when girls are often made to feel strange […]

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How Do You Make Teen Comedies Today? Buy a High School.

Chris Weitz, the co-director of “American Pie” and one of the producers of Ms. Cohen’s film, attributes the shift to technology that puts audiences in control. “It was one thing when the gatekeepers, usually old fogies, controlled what kind of content was going to be put out about teens,” he said. “Now teens can get […]

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Why Are More Black Children Dying by Suicide?

“This is a deterrent,” said Dr. Kali D. Cyrus, a psychiatrist at Sibley Memorial Hospital in Washington, D.C., and an assistant professor at Johns Hopkins University. Talking about your family’s business with a white person — much less an outsider — is often discouraged in the Black community, added Dr. Cyrus, who is Black. Most […]

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At COP26, Youth Want Action, Accountability as Protesters Rally

GLASGOW — Thousands of climate activists from across the world have descended this week on the Scottish city of Glasgow, demanding that nations gathering for a global climate conference produce real, meaningful change. And some of the strongest and most urgent calls for action have come from young protesters who claim that the world they […]

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Covid-19 and Children: How Often Do Vaccines Cause Heart Problems?

Federal regulators are reviewing data on the link between Moderna’s coronavirus vaccine and a rare heart problem in adolescents, the company announced on Sunday. That side effect — myocarditis, an inflammation of the heart muscle — has also worried advisers to federal agencies in deliberations regarding use of the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine in younger children and […]

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How to Talk to Teens About Edibles

A few years ago, my high school daughter came home talking about rumors of pot gummy bears circulating at our local middle school. Until then I didn’t realize that I needed to add edible cannabis to the list of topics to address with teenagers in my care. For adolescents, the widespread legalization of marijuana has […]

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Instagram Struggles With Fears of Losing Its ‘Pipeline’: Young Users

With the leadership changes, Facebook went all out to turn Instagram into a main attraction for young audiences, four former employees said. That coincided with the realization that Facebook itself, which was grappling with data privacy and other scandals, would never be a teen destination, the people said. Instagram began concentrating on the “teen time […]

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Push to Improve Sex Ed in Australia Comes From 10,000 Miles Away

LONDON — Not long ago, Chanel Contos was living the life of a typical graduate student, albeit a pandemic one: sleeping in late and attending online classes while enduring months of lockdown in her East London apartment. But a petition she began that calls for schools in Australia, her home country, to reform their education […]

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Texas Removed an L.G.B.T.Q. Resource Page After a Candidate Complained

The State of Texas removed a web page that offered resources to gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender youth after one of Gov. Greg Abbott’s Republican primary challengers said its content was “offensive” and out of line with “Texas values.” The removal occurred shortly after the candidate, Don Huffines, denounced the website in a video that […]

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The Moral Panic Engulfing Instagram

In testimony before a Senate subcommittee last week, Frances Haugen, a former Facebook employee turned whistle-blower, raised a number of important and complex policy questions about how society might better regulate the wayward social-media giant. But she also raised a very basic question, one for which neither the hearing nor her leaked internal documents provided […]

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F.D.A. Authorizes E-Cigarettes to Stay on U.S. Market for the First Time

The Food and Drug Administration for the first time on Tuesday authorized an electronic cigarette to be sold in the United States, a significant turn in one of the most contentious public health debates in decades. In greenlighting a device and tobacco-flavored cartridges marketed by R.J. Reynolds under the brand name Vuse, the agency signaled […]

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Does Instagram Harm Girls? No One Actually Knows.

Amid the pillorying of Facebook that has dominated the latest news cycle there is an inconvenient fact that critics have overlooked: No research — by Facebook or anyone else — has demonstrated that exposure to Instagram, a Facebook app, harms teenage girls’ psychological well-being. Last month The Wall Street Journal reported that Facebook’s “own in-depth […]

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For Teen Girls, Instagram Is a Cesspool

Mark Zuckerberg participated in the ritual of ranking girls too. When he was experimenting before building Facebook, as a student at Harvard, he put his female classmates’ photos on his now-notorious “Facemash” website, where students could rank and compare the students’ headshots based on how hot they were. He wrote at the time, “I almost […]

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Covid Vaccines and Children: Is One Dose Better Than Two?

Even as parents in the United States wrestle with difficult questions over vaccinating their children against the coronavirus, families in other countries have been offered a novel option: giving children just one dose of the vaccine. Officials in Hong Kong as well as in Britain, Norway and other countries have recommended a single dose of […]

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Facebook Senate Hearing: Teenage Girls and Social Media’s Effect

Annie Zhu got an Instagram account during her freshman year of high school. At first, she curated her profile carefully, showing off different outfits and looks. She followed body positivity and body neutrality accounts. But she still sometimes compared herself with others, and “it can make me feel bad,” she said. So when she recently […]

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Facebook Is Weaker Than We Knew

It has become fashionable among Facebook critics to emphasize the company’s size and dominance while bashing its missteps. In a Senate hearing on Thursday, lawmakers grilled Antigone Davis, Facebook’s global head of safety, with questions about the company’s addictive product design and the influence it has over its billions of users. Many of the questions […]

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They Want to Hand Your Kid a Debit Card. What Do You Do?

Then, a few basics. If you’re seeking regular allowance distribution and management, most services can handle that. But if you’re paying your children for chores and want to check tasks off on a line-item basis before pushing money onto a kid’s card, that’s a feature that you should select for specifically. Gohenry does this, and […]

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When an Angry Old Pol Shakes His Fist at the Internet

Davis wiggled out of the mess, using a typical Facebook tactic of saying that the company was misunderstood and that its own research was narrow and misconstrued. That cynical approach is a go-to for Facebook, which specializes in muddying even its own waters as they get too hot. It will not work this time — […]

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Facebook Struggles to Quell Uproar Over Instagram’s Effect on Teens

But some of Facebook’s containment has at times backfired with its own workers. This week, the company downplayed the internal research that The Journal had partly based its articles on, suggesting that the findings were limited and imprecise. That angered some employees who had worked on the research, three people said. They have congregated on […]

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Youth Vaping Declined Sharply for Second Year, New Data Show

Teen use of electronic cigarettes fell sharply in 2021, the second consecutive year of big declines, according to the government’s annual National Youth Tobacco Survey. This year, 11.3 percent of high school students reported that they currently vape — down from 19.6 percent in 2020 and strikingly lower than the 27.5 percent reported in 2019, […]

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Facebook Downplays Internal Research Released on Eve of Hearing

Facebook on Wednesday published two internal research reports about its photo-sharing app, Instagram, and downplayed their conclusions, as the company prepared for two congressional hearings in the next week that are focused on its products’ effects on children’s mental health. The reports — “Teen Mental Health Deep Dive,” published internally in October 2019, and “Hard […]

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Instagram Is Adult Entertainment

That libertarian’s argument, in this case, boils down to the idea that if you have a novel, obviously addictive technology that might well be associated with depression, narcissism and self-harm, you need to wait for absolute certainty in that association before you start thinking about limits on how kids use it, because once upon a […]

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The Pandemic Has Made Social Anxiety Worse for the Young

The University of Alabama at Birmingham is asking professors to look out for warning signs of a socially anxious student, such as tardiness and disengagement in the classroom, after seeing a 20 percent increase in patients at the student counseling center since 2019. “If faculty are not aware of social anxiety and its impact, they […]

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Eating Disorders in Teens Have ‘Exploded’ in the Pandemic

What young people find when they go looking for fitness information can be highly problematic. They are likely to come across harmful “thinspiration” and “fitspiration” posts celebrating slim or sculpted bodies, or even sites that encourage eating disordered behavior. Worse, algorithms record online search information and are “deliberately designed to feed harmful weight loss content […]

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When a College Student Has a Troubled Roommate

How much do the roommate’s troubles bother your son or daughter? If safety is not an immediate concern, you’ll want to find out what the roommate’s difficulties mean to your college student. For example, your son might say that his roommate drinks too much and often misses class, but that the roommate isn’t disruptive because […]

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How to Wrap Advice as a Gift a Teenager Might Open

Don’t Make It Personal Our teenagers care what we think about them. Which accounts for how injured they tell me they feel when, out of the blue, their parents approach them with a lecture on the dangers of pain pills, perhaps after watching a frightening documentary about the opioid epidemic. While the adults may feel […]

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The Promise of Self-Compassion for Stressed-Out Teens

The teens I work with are prone to catastrophizing when facing a problem (“I’ll never get into college,” “I’ll never get a good job”). For them, the mindfulness step of self-compassion — which asks them to zero in on a feeling instead of an imagined, exaggerated outcome — is especially grounding. My students find self-kindness […]

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How to Talk With Teenagers About Vaping

Other teenagers may simply find themselves wanting to sample flavors with names like “German Chocolate Beefcake” or be drawn to e-cigarettes by mesmerizing videos of tricks done with the exhaled vapor. If adults address only the downsides of risky temptations it’s easy for adolescents to dismiss us as killjoys who just don’t get it. Appreciating […]

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