REPORT: The Perfect Generation. Is the Internet Undermining Young People’s Mental Health?
The Perfect Generation: Is the Internet Undermining Young People's Mental Health?
A report by Rachel Rosen for Parent Zone
Presented at the British Medical Association, Tavistock Square, London
17 March 2016
Family life is arguably more complex now than it has ever been. Parents face having to explain issues to their children that could, in the past, have been gently brushed under the carpet.
Families have become permeable. Children have access to information, views and opinions that adults cannot control.
The internet has destroyed any notions we might have had about keeping some things away from children until they were ‘old enough to cope’.
In this fast-changing space concerns emerge and worries increase. The impact of the internet on young people’s mental health is one such concern.
All of the indicators suggest that the prevalence of mental health problems and the severity of the problems are increasing.
Some people are linking the internet to the increase; but before we move to solutions that at best might not meet the need and at worse, could result in unintended consequences, we wanted to find out more: to speak to the young people who have grown up with technology and hear their views so that we can start to think about how best to support the people who care for them and educate them.
This report offers a glimpse into their world. It does this by doing what parents around the country do when they are concerned about young people – talking to young people and the schools they attend.
Vicki Shotbolt, Parent Zone CEO