Teenagers and stress

By: Dr. Jennifer B. Lagrotte, DMFT

It is not uncommon to hear adults talk about how teenagers shouldn’t feel so stressed as they a have it easy in life. While this may be true for some, teenagers are actually exposed to many kinds of stress that can be quite the burden. The stress in teenagers can be caused by many things, including school, competing in sports, trying to fit in extracurricular activities while attempting to get all their homework done, not fitting in well with the crowd at school, dealing with the high expectations on them from their parents and teachers, and trying to achieve their goals of earning scholarships and getting into the college or university of their choice.

None of these worries or causes of stress may seem like something that should get a teenager worked up, but the truth is that most, if not all, of these do. Teenagers are at a stage in their life where they feel like they are at a pivotal point in determining how their future lives are going to go. Many feel that if they do not do as well at school as is required by their parents, and/or teachers, they will not amount to anything in their adult life. Many will feel that if they fail in these years, they will fail in their lives and have to live with that for the next 50 or so years. Few will slow down enough to realize that school is not the end of all their dreams. The fact is that the pressure of all the different aspects in their life at that point can become so much that they get lost in the struggle to achieve their best. Insecurities may begin to develop, as can deep depression when marks and goals are not met within a certain amount of time. Teenagers with parents who push them to excel in sports when the student feels they want to spend more time in their academics can also be extremely stressful. Not being able to earn certain scholarships or being turned down from the college or university they have always wanted to go to is another reason for stress. Above all, however, is fear of disappointing one’s parents and/or teachers; anyone the teenager may look up to.

Regardless of what kind of stress the teenager is experiencing, recognizing that the teenager is stressed and helping them to deal with it properly is important. Leaving a teenager to deal with their stress on their own may only lead to further failure, lower marks, lower interest, more stress and depression. Sometimes, getting them to talk to someone is all that they need; someone who will listen to them and help them to organize their thoughts. Online counselors are available to anyone who needs someone to talk to. Getting the teenager to try some online counseling can be a good way to start helping the teen to work with their stress. Online therapy can be helpful because the online therapist will work with the teen to first determine what might be causing their stress, and then help them deal with it so that their stress does not continue to build.

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Jennifer Baxt is the owner of CompleteCounselingSolutions.com which offers a variety of online counseling services. If you would like to know more about Jennifer or any of our online therapists, visit our website.

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