Cyberbullying is one of the biggest threats to today’s youth.
Today’s youth are under a lot of pressure to excel in every walk of life, surrounded by social media, the unattainable beauty and excellence standards set by their peers and the social influencers they follow and idolize, is taking a toll on them, with many youth facing self-esteem issues.
On top of the self-criticism, and peer adoration, today’s youth are, also met with bullying for looking different, doing different or loving different. It is reported that in the years 2018-2020, 60% of parents with children aged 14-18 have reported that their children were bullied in some form. (Sam Cook, 2020).
It is important for us to develop programs that help young people open their minds and accept the differences amongst peers, their beliefs, and behaviors. We must help future generations to embrace differences and accept them.
Given how quickly their world transformed with COVID-19, elevating stress and hindering the pursuit of their dreams, Gen Z and Millennials need our support today, more than ever before. We must collaborate and build frameworks that can help them develop positivity and good mental health.
Again, this should not come as a surprise. According to the World Health Organisation below are a few numbers:
Globally, more than 264 million people suffer from depression and it is one of the leading causes of illness and disability among adolescents.
One in four people in the world is affected by mental or neurological disorders at some point in their lives.
Suicide is the third leading cause of death in 15-19-year-olds
As a society, we need to come together and invest in mental health for a better future.
Youth whilst being a source of energy, passion, and forward optimism, is also a group that is quite susceptible to change. Even during normal circumstances, mental well-being is extremely important in the youth to ensure we have a progressive society. The pandemic has made it challenging for young people to stay mentally fit. Prolonged isolation and the lack of physical social interaction is depriving them of the basic and extremely important human need that Maslow’s hierarchy theory highlighted.
Adolescents have been more severely impacted and whilst scientists and researchers toil away to produce a vaccine for Covid-19, the impact of the pandemic on mental health can’t be undone. Governments, institutions, communities, and individuals need to come together to prevent mental illnesses and promote the importance of mental health.