We Need More Teen Voices

The impact of the global pandemic continues to contribute to mental health challenges among teens. While conversation has never been more public, it is still difficult to hear directly from teens about their everyday feelings and actions.

Defining the underlying causes of mental health issues are extremely difficult to identify. Gaining a diagnosis to explain and cope with behavioral challenges is often out of reach due to inadequate access to care. What sometimes feels like a small change in the behavior of young people can grow. From feeling down and isolated, to an inability to socially connect, kids are often left unable to even define what they feel or need. Concerns about making true friends has risen and the number of young people with friendships that allow them to share vulnerabilities is in decline.

Making sports teams, passing classes, joining groups, honor roll recognition, family dynamics and class clicks are leaving more and more teens without the tools to navigate states of pressure and daily decision making. What makes it even more difficult are the “care deserts” in which teens, families, healthcare providers and educators struggle to obtain appointments, consultations, and evaluations.

While families and educators wait for more resources to become available, we want to creating more conversations.

We are creating ways to give voice to young people and an opportunity for their peers and family to listen and know they are not alone. We want to share conversations to educate parents about the experiences of teens who may not otherwise share their feelings. We want to be a place where teens can talk more and demonstrate shared experiences.

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