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Wed Aug 1, 2012, 02:47 PM

Teen Girls: Depression? Really? How About Anger and Powerlessness?

"Girls might be more inclined to depression because coming to terms with your own cultural marginalization and irrelevance is depressing..." - Soraya Chemaly

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/soraya-chemaly/teen-depression_b_1719534.html

...

New data from a national survey conducted between 2008 and 2010 reveals that between the ages of 12-15, the number of girls experiencing depression triples. This happens at a rate of three times that of boys. Girls attempt suicide in greater numbers but boys, who tend to use guns more, succeed more often. As last week's Huffington Post article about the study explained, before puberty, boys and girls typically experience depression at the same frequency. "Social pressures" appear to be greater for girls and, of course, we've all been schooled on the impact of "hormones and emotions." Doctors believe it is vital that we teach teenage girls coping skills and social support systems so that they can better avoid depression. But girls aren't just depressed when they are teens. Remember that 2009 study "Why are Women Increasingly Unhappy?" They grow up to be more depressed in their 20's, 30's, 40's and beyond.

...

I'm not sure why more people aren't talking about anger and power and teenage girls in the news we read about skyrocketing rates of depression. Girls have the right to be angry. We need to allow them to be angry, powerful, physical and popular in "nonsexual and nonmaterialistic" ways. Not acknowledging anger and powerlessness or trivializing it only makes things worse. I'd suggest we'd have a lot less girls to "fix" if we started looking at how anger can impact depression in youth, acknowledged that anger and sought its causes.

You know what else happens in the buildup to puberty besides the "hormonal problems" that beset girls? Girls have to come to terms with a broad assault on their sense of self. They face a daily virtual avalanche of micro-aggressions whose messages would anger and sadden any thoughtful, sane adult. Think about what girls experience as young children and enter puberty:

...

Girls have to filter their existences through these messages of powerlessness and literal cultural worthlessness. Is this depressing YOU? Girls might be more inclined to depression because coming to terms with your own cultural marginalization and irrelevance is depressing. Boys have their own woes, I know. For those readers and commenters that feel obliged to turn every discussion about girls into one about the plight of boys -- please look elsewhere today. I know, girls are doing SO well in school, will "soon" be the richer sex and men are coming to a crashing end! I will write another post when that happens admitting my error.

...

24 replies, 2647 views

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Arrow 24 replies Author Time Post
Reply Teen Girls: Depression? Really? How About Anger and Powerlessness? (Original post)
redqueen Aug 2012 OP
Sherman A1 Aug 2012 #1
redqueen Aug 2012 #2
femrap Oct 2012 #22
seabeyond Aug 2012 #3
MadrasT Aug 2012 #4
seabeyond Aug 2012 #5
redqueen Aug 2012 #8
whathehell Aug 2012 #7
whathehell Aug 2012 #6
redqueen Aug 2012 #9
whathehell Aug 2012 #10
seabeyond Aug 2012 #11
whathehell Aug 2012 #12
redqueen Aug 2012 #13
seabeyond Aug 2012 #14
redqueen Aug 2012 #15
seabeyond Aug 2012 #17
whathehell Aug 2012 #16
femrap Oct 2012 #23
ChillZilla Oct 2012 #18
MadrasT Oct 2012 #19
ismnotwasm Oct 2012 #21
ismnotwasm Oct 2012 #20
femrap Oct 2012 #24

Response to redqueen (Original post)

Wed Aug 1, 2012, 02:58 PM

1. Food for thought

Some very interesting points to consider and very worthy of being discussed. I might not completely agree with everything, but I don't find myself in disagreement either.

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Response to Sherman A1 (Reply #1)

Wed Aug 1, 2012, 03:09 PM

2. There was a book which came out almost 20 years ago...

Reviving Ophelia: Saving the Selves of our Adolescent Girls. It is about this same issue. I consider it must-read material for parents of teenage or pre-teen girls.

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Response to redqueen (Reply #2)

Sat Oct 27, 2012, 09:59 PM

22. Just watch any MSM show

 

with women and she how they are portrayed...turn on any 'comedy' and see why young women are depressed.

If I see one more show in the TV guide about Pregnancy: Obese and Pregnant, Secretly Pregnant, 16 and Pregnant.

And all the catty housewives around the country.

And for the pedophiles we have 'tiaras and tots.'

Magazines and all the prefect bodies of women that are photoshopped.

I'd be depressed too.

Young women have to unite and say 'Enough of this Crap.' We're not going to slather on make-up, wear 5" heels, show all our skin...what makes a woman is what is inside her head, heart and soul. The outside is just a container of genetic code.

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Response to redqueen (Original post)

Wed Aug 1, 2012, 03:36 PM

3. "Why are Women Increasingly Unhappy?" decades watching rape as entertainment

seeing in every guy movie the strippers and prostitutes because they want to be "historically" accurate, the endless sexualization of all women, computerized perfection.....

decades of imbalance. i can see a deep seeded anger that a man will certainly not experience.

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Response to seabeyond (Reply #3)

Wed Aug 1, 2012, 03:54 PM

4. And yet...

...when I try to describe what this is like to men in my life, it is dismissed as being "hypersensitive", or "that ridiculous feminism stuff".

They will never know what it feels like to walk around in the world being viewed and treated as prey.

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Response to MadrasT (Reply #4)

Wed Aug 1, 2012, 04:34 PM

5. sigh....

i spent a lot of time, way too much time looking at 50 shades, tattoo girl, games of throne, girls. deadwood, saprano that all have rape as entertainment. i wanted to do the effects after reading one male blog saying, see, this is what women really want. look at all this that they are into. do not believe them when they say they do not want this.

i spent way too much time, that i am thinking about starting a, not so pretty OP, that turns the tables. on all this stuff that is in their cause of "historical" relevance. there is a lot more of history, and recent history i am not seeing us entertained with.

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Response to MadrasT (Reply #4)

Thu Aug 2, 2012, 12:56 PM

8. ... as things.

To have your humanity stripped so that you are viewed (and too often treated) like an object.

The fact that this concept is still so poorly understood is so frustrating.

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Response to seabeyond (Reply #3)

Wed Aug 1, 2012, 11:28 PM

7. Yep.

Being treated as a second rate person will engender a deep seated anger.

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Response to redqueen (Original post)

Wed Aug 1, 2012, 11:27 PM

6. Yes, well they say that depression is anger turned inwards.

I was a tomboy as a kid and when I turned twelve and again at thirteen

I experienced two instances of grand mal seizures that I had to be hospitalized

for, though they never found a phsyical reason for them.

Apart from the fact that kids that age can be an effing nightmare

I wasn't one of the "popular" girls and was harrassed by both boys

and girls, I've always wondered if one of the reasons, unconsciously,

was that I perceived my days of "freedom" were ending, and that

I would soon be devalued and objectified as "prey"....This was

in the early-mid sixties when the Women's movement wasn't even being mentioned.

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Response to whathehell (Reply #6)

Thu Aug 2, 2012, 01:01 PM

9. "I perceived my days of "freedom" were ending..."

That's pretty much how I saw it. I remember how disheartening it was to have all the girls around me so enthusiastic about it. I remember seeing Grease around that time, and thinking WTF. I liked the music. The message, I found beyond depressing.

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Response to redqueen (Reply #9)

Thu Aug 2, 2012, 03:19 PM

10. Yes, well, I suppose we're both lucky in that we

at least grew up in feminist times...Think how it must have been for

the women of other generations, although I must say that the women

on both sides of my family -- mother, and both grandmothers, were all strong.

There were no doormats or clinging vines, thank God.

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Response to whathehell (Reply #10)

Thu Aug 2, 2012, 03:26 PM

11. mom was on the golf course around dinner. some man off in the distance yelled she should be cooking

dinner. she couldnt see that distance. she didnt know who it was. but, her finger went up, and flipped him off, lol.

my mom was pretty strong and didnt play that shit either.

and i have said many times. we were raised as people, not gender. i had the same expectation as my brothers. more, cause i had more potential and not getting in trouble.

but, i do think about the first wave and before.

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Response to seabeyond (Reply #11)

Thu Aug 2, 2012, 03:41 PM

12. Good for her!

Your mom sounds cool!

Yes, I believe that of my sister and I too -- We were raised as "people" not as a gender,

although my sister, who is five years older and just ONE year shy of being a Boomer

seems to have "picked up" a few traditional female "smile and be nice" behaviors

from her environment or somewhere.

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Response to whathehell (Reply #10)

Thu Aug 2, 2012, 04:04 PM

13. Times my butt.

In the house I grew up in dad was king and the girls' looks were paramount. I was at least encouraged to be my naturally nerdy self and get a good education (cause I was ugly and wouldn't catch a good husband), so there's that.

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Response to redqueen (Reply #13)

Thu Aug 2, 2012, 04:08 PM

14. omFg. no way? what happens to a girl raised in that manner. really....

that is so fuckin foreign to me, i do not even get what it does to a girl.

we really had none of that shit in our house.

i find it fascinating.

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Response to seabeyond (Reply #14)

Thu Aug 2, 2012, 04:23 PM

15. Well all those negative stereotypes about men,

you grow up thinking that's reality. That its true that men all cheat (or lie about it) and when he does it's your fault so just accept it... that all men care about is looks and sex so just accept it, that men are the bosses and that women are (as Einstein said) employees they can't fire.

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Response to redqueen (Reply #15)

Thu Aug 2, 2012, 07:29 PM

17. amazing what a father gives his daughter. mine did not cheat, or have playboy

i know, i was a snoop. or check girls out as he held my hand walking down the street, or make sexist remarks about their body. i expected no less from other men. and when i did come across one, they were creeps. the unusual. i wanted to stay well away from that man.

respect. two way street in parenting. to this day i thank my father.

my husbands father is the same (except the game he plays with me). my husband got the same example from his father, what a man is. so i guess it would be said also, amazing what a father gives his son.

the good/bad/ugly

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Response to redqueen (Reply #13)

Thu Aug 2, 2012, 07:25 PM

16. My condolences..

but I'd suggest that the "times" are still significant,

in that girls could at least reference a wider world,

in which that wasn't the only choice.

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Response to whathehell (Reply #6)

Sat Oct 27, 2012, 10:02 PM

23. It was just beginning then...

 

but only in major cities.

I still remember being told to shave my legs. I remember doing it....and it made no sense. It was so blonde and soft. I clung to my childhood....I could see the adults and how they acted...YUCK. I never did learn how to flirt.

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Response to redqueen (Original post)

Wed Oct 24, 2012, 05:21 PM

18. "We need to allow them to be angry, powerful, physical"

 

Well, that's great unless you're the one that gets to deal with their anger, and are within the reach of their physical power. My sister turned angry at 13 and didn't stop screaming until she was around 25. My life (brother) was misery when she was around. This wasn't societies fault by the way, it was life.

There's probably a million reasons why girls and women are increasingly unhappy. How would the OP feel if we told girls that their best chance for long term happiness and fulfilment was to get married, to a man, and raise children in a stable home vs get a job and put off marriage/family because it would limit them? Not so fashionable nowadays, maybe it correlates with the depression? I see lots of tv role models for girls, and most are either party girls or professionals. Not a lot of stay at home moms. Not that it's easy or a road to guaranteed happiness, but women seem to me to be hard wired to get fulfillment from raising a family. I know my wife is, even if we all drive her insane sometimes.

Not what you wanted to hear, but it's obvious you're not a big fan of men/boys.

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Response to ChillZilla (Reply #18)

Wed Oct 24, 2012, 05:34 PM

19. Women are not "hardwired" to get fulfillment from raising a family.

Some individual women may think that is their path to happiness. Other individual women would find that to be the most oppressive thing imaginable.

And what is this:

get married, to a man


Besides pure homophobic bullshit?

Do not lump us all together with male-generated fantasy prescriptions for happiness, and keep your homophobia out of this group.

Edit to add: I alerted on that garbage for the homophobia; jury let it stand 1 to 5.

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Response to MadrasT (Reply #19)

Wed Oct 24, 2012, 06:19 PM

21. Yeah cause

Getting married to the same sex isn't in the 'fulfillment' plans. Lors' a mercy no.

I think they like to use those two or three misinterpreted phases out of the entire bible to justify that one.

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Response to ChillZilla (Reply #18)

Wed Oct 24, 2012, 06:05 PM

20. Oh for gods sake

Anecdotal stories, while interesting are not anywhere near entire picture--we all have them. And women WERE told that family and motherhood was not only the ultimate fulfillment, but what they were only fit for--for millennial,actually--the cost to society is incalculable when you keep half the population oppressed.

My daughter is a decorated combat veteran who spent over 8 years on the military who is now a stay at home Mom. She works as hard at that as she did in the military. I couldn't be prouder of her. For her it was a choice. Not wiring, anymore than being a weapons expert was wiring, any more than searching female insurgents was wiring, anymore than living in a war zone for a year was wiring.

You've missed the entire point, but that's nothing new, we're used to it.

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Response to ChillZilla (Reply #18)

Sat Oct 27, 2012, 10:08 PM

24. You need to go read a

 

few books on feminism and then come back.

There is no one lifestyle that provided HAPPINESS TO ALL WOMEN. Are you for real?

Get off the computer and go spend some time w/ your wife and kids. I feel very, very sorry for her.

I'm not a fan of YOU. I have other dudes who I respect and admire....who are intelligent, compassionate and don't drive their wives INSANE. You said it, I didn't.

Shoo. You're new and you're not welcome if you have nothing to contribute but drivel and stupidity.

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