The 2019 Peer Pressure Seminar discussed different issues concerning today’s youth. One of the most controversial topics was school-based sex education. Sex education is the process of providing information on sex, sexuality, and reproductive health.
Notwithstanding the evidence-based advantages of sex education among the youth, some people still doubt its importance. Adults, especially parents, are concerned with the possible adverse consequences of sex education on children’s values and behavior. These concerns are commonly a result of misconceptions about sex education in schools. Debunking these myths is essential in promoting the sexual and reproductive health and rights of the youth.
Here are some of the most common misconceptions about sex education in schools.
Sex Education Encourages Young People To Become Sexually Active
Many people think sex education means teaching young people to engage in sexual activity. What sex education programs teach is the biology of reproductive organs, among others. It tackles pregnancy and the spread of sexually-transmitted diseases. Sex education does not encourage sexual activity but merely helps young people to make responsible and healthy choices. Additionally, research shows that comprehensive sex education may delay sexual initiation among teens.
Sex Education Increases The Risk Of Unwanted Pregnancies
The purpose of sex education is to avoid, not to promote, unwanted pregnancies. Knowing about reproduction and safe sex practices helps the youth become more cautious with their choices. The truth is, unintended pregnancies are the result of misinformation and lack of information. Through sex education, young people become more aware of the possible consequences of their actions.
The School Is Not The Right Place To Talk About Sexual Health
Some people acknowledge the importance of sex education but disagree for it to be taught in schools. For them, teaching sexual health is the sole responsibility of the family. Sex education is not a linear process. It requires the cooperation of the individual, his or her family, and the entire community. Both the family and the school have essential roles to play in promoting sexual and reproductive health among the youth.
School-based sex education does not only help the youth make the right decisions. It also develops and instills the values of responsibility and self-acceptance. We can only achieve these objectives if we debunk the misconceptions about sex education in schools.
No one deserves to grow up trying to heal from carnal assault in kids. It happens all the time in every part of the globe.
Sexual abuse can happen within the family or circle of friends, and it can create long term trauma for the victim. If you are sexually abused by a family member, we can give you resources to help you recover.
However, there are ways for survivors to manage their inner trauma and perpetrator. Let’s discuss how to deal with childhood sexual abuse further.
Childhood Sexual Abuse
Child carnal abuse is defined as a sensual activity with a child by an adult – rape. This adult, and the vast majority of abusers, could be manifesting risky behaviors such as substance abuse or drug abuse, sexual dysfunction, and adverse childhood experiences at an early age. It is any risky behavior between an adult and a child, such as touching, kissing, and fondling of private parts when the adults get sensual gratification.
Child sexual abuse, physical abuse, or child abuse are just of the common issues in the world. Many children experience sexual violence, abuse and neglect around the globe. In some countries in the middle east, for instance, kids already experience sexual activity even when they’re still minor because of young-marriage. While it is part of culture, the kids’ consent are basically vitiated due to their tender age. Childhood sexual abuse can bring long-term trauma to kids.
“Many people who suffer from sexual assault can also suffer long-term effects from the abuse,” says John M. Grohol, Psy.D. Going to a shelter for sensual violence to give counseling for the first time is not easy.
You may act and sound friendly, but you’ll be able to tell how hesitant many of the victims are to greet visitors. What is a traumatic experience of sexually abused children? Do they get impaired by sensual victimization and past abuse?
Risks Of Childhood Sexual Abuse To Victims
Research shows that some of these children, after all, are stowaways who got mixed up with a dangerous crowd. They experienced assault in their own homes. If you visit a housing system for girls, there may even be a few who became pregnant at a young age because of sexual abuse or sensual assault.
Future generations who experience sensual assault have double the risk of mental health conditions, this includes suicidal ideation and attempted suicide. These are exacerbated by a lack of access to or awareness about mental health services and psychological treatment interventions.
Vulnerable child victims who suffered violence and physical abuse may also have depression, trauma, eating disorders, and other chronic health conditions. However, they are not being addressed accordingly because of the culture of silence, which hinders abuse survivors from seeking legal process.
Moreover, many children who experience sensual assault have an increased risk of sexually transmitted infections.
Child Sexual Abuse – Counseling For Sexual Abuse
Despite the sadness that may engulf you, though, you need to get over it so that you can give treatment to these victims. Ensure that you’ll be an effective counselor for child victims who have experienced unwarranted sensual intercourse from child abusers.
The truth about child sex abuse cases, any child abuse cases for that matter, is that the victims typically know the perpetrators personally, usually members of their family. Family structure is one of the most important risk factors in child sex abuse.
“Child carnal abuse often occurs in families, and in social contexts in which the family members know and trust the perpetrators,” according to Sharie Stines, Psy.D. It may be a classmate, a family friend, or even a family member who is already welcome in most victims’ lives. This is why the likelihood of assault can occur.
Few Warning Signs
There are warning signs of unwarranted activity and possible sexual assault, which include physical injury or physical force and behavioral symptoms like avoidance of physical contact, changes in hygiene, and bleeding of private parts.
What you can do to prove that you mean no harm is to open up about yourself at first. It can be a perfect half-sign to hope for the better. It will also be safe to keep physical distance from the child, too, who might already be experiencing intimate victimization due to a sex crime of forced sexual contact.
More importantly, speak more like a friend than a mental health professional so that the victim of unwarranted sensual activity doesn’t feel the need to hide from you. Increase the connection by taking friendly action.
There’s no way to estimate how long you have to wait before a child who suffered from abuse trusts you and engages in a relationship.
Nevertheless, you’ll be able to tell once it occurs since that’s when the teen starts to smile and talk without prompting.
Removing Negative Behaviors Caused By Sensual Violence
In case a teen who was sexually abused and experienced violence grew up with malicious acts performed on them, there is a possibility that they will try to follow the wrongdoer’s lead and commit the same violations, others may turn to prostitution as teens. It was like doing it was all they knew in life without thinking about the consequences. Unfortunately, that is true for many teens that experienced carnal violence repeatedly.
Once you have earned their trust, therefore, start removing the negative behaviors the children developed because of sensual violence. It may be tough to make them see reason in the beginning, but you ought to remember that children are born to be smart.
What A Counselor Can Do
As a counselor, you may have plenty of diplomas and certifications lining your walls. It is likely that you have also read tons of books regarding counseling victims of sexual violence. Note that it also happens in males. There are male survivors as well.
However, if you feel worried about treating the children for the first time, don’t be. You have to recall that they need support and treatment more than anything. Youth violence is more devastating than you can imagine, losing their self-esteem along the way.
According to psychiatrist Lynn Ponton, MD, “An effective counselor can identify negative thinking patterns that may be feeding feelings of sadness or anxiety.”
Group therapy support for children of the same ages may be helpful because it can teach social skills and other social aids to help them with the feeling of isolation. It can assist them in other types of relationships example so they can be aware of people.
Reconciliation For The Victim
It is always better to allow the victim to come up with a solution to their problem themselves than to supply it to them.
Prolonged exposure therapy is also recommended as it lets the person regain power over their story. Different family therapy forms may also be recommended in addition.
Teaching The Children How To Cope
Instead of allowing the victim who suffered from sexual assault to become dependent on you, you have to teach the victim how to cope with it. You may inform the kids’ families about it too. They won’t relapse and relive the abuse. This way, even years after your counseling sessions end, such abuse during the early years is a significant topic that we all should control and be aware of.
For those who experienced sexual assaults or experiencing assault, or harassment, seek information and updates about how to prevent it. Get involved with preventing child sexual assault and find the resources and evidence you need for awareness so we can all protect children, especially female victims.
Frequently Asked Questions:
How Many Dids Are Molested Each Year?
Which Type Of Abuse Is The Hardest To Detect?
What is unhealed trauma in children?
How do I know if I had trauma when I was a kid?
What is considered a lewd act on a child?
What are the 5 most common types of abuse?
What are the characteristics of a sexually assaulted child?
What are the legal definitions of sexual assault?
Do I have PTSD from childhood?
What does abuse do to the brain?
What are the six long-term effects of abuse?
At what age is sexual assault most common?
Who are the most common sex abusers?
What are the signs of child sex assault?
What are the two major forms of sex assault in children?
Many people say that being a teenager now is more terrifying than ever. For one, there are plenty of adolescent girls who slap makeup products on their faces, to the extent that they look older than a 25-year-old woman. It seems cool that more and more kids can reveal their sexuality without getting ridiculed because of it, but you will also find more of them caring too much about meeting the beauty standards imposed by some adults in the society. Worse, when rebellion or bullying coupled with the failure to get whatever they want, these kids tend to require a consultation with psychologists to help them get through their issues. “When students believed their emotional safety had been violated by remarks they considered to be insufficiently sensitive, they often called for severe punishment of the offending party,” explains Seth J. Gillihan Ph.D.
According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), approximately 4.5 million kids between the ages of 3 and 17 have behavioral problems. Another set of children (more or less 1.5 million of them, to be specific) has been diagnosed with depression. Then, there are also approximately 4.9 million kids within the same age range who deal with anxiety disorders. Some of the conditions have aggravated due to the poor financial situation of their families, while others have been victims of various forms of abuse.
It is undoubtedly heartbreaking for an individual of any age to learn that millions of children go through such ordeals mainly because of the people around them. Even the teenagers whose heads are where they should be can feel for their same-aged peers who are not as lucky as they may be, family-, academic- or money-wise. Nevertheless, in case you are already 18, and you want your mental health to improve and influence others to do the same, here are a couple of selfless things that you can do this summer.
Join A Philanthropic Mission
It is always during the school break that non-profit organizations hold charity work to help the less fortunate people across the city or state. That gives teenagers such as yourself the opportunity to join a philanthropic mission and avoid entertaining negative thoughts in general. According to Jennice Vilhauer Ph.D., “Engaging in some type of regular volunteer activity on at least a monthly basis, or just spending more time doing loving, kind things for the people in your life, helps get you out of your own head, creates well-being for others, and makes you feel good about yourself.”
In 2016, to be precise, Carlos Miller and Chris Bentley of Palm Beach County, Florida created a not-for-profit project “Live Fresh Palm Beach County” through the grants given by Impact for Palm Beaches and Quantum Foundation, which amounted to US$107,500 in total. This funding allowed the two men to renovate a trailer into a 29.5-ft. shower and personal care space for the homeless folks in the county. The mobile amenity had enough room for six bathrooms, which were complete with walls and doors to allow the individuals to wash up in privacy. They roamed around the Palm Beach zone three times a week at the time and gave the homeless people shower and personal hygiene package, as well as health checkups once every month.
Even now, the Live Fresh project continues to help the less fortunate individuals in their cleansing way. If you can join organizations that do that and more, you’ll be set for life.
Donate Your Blood
From what we learned from our friends at the American Red Cross, any healthy individual above 17 years old can donate blood. The only requirements they ask for are your parents’ consent form and IDs that will prove your age. Physically, you need to ensure that you weigh more than 110 lbs., have no recent tattoos inked on your skin, and have not gone through the blood donation process within the last two months.
Now, if your concern is that you might feel dizzy after donating blood, there are juices that can refresh your blood supply. For starters, you need to shred beetroot (1 kilogram), carrots (1 kilogram), and apples (1 kilogram), squeeze the juice out of four pieces of lemons, stir them well in a big bowl, and then let it sit for 24 hours. Afterward, strain the concoction using a clean cloth or gauze so that you can get all the liquid out and into a new container. Then, mix 250 grams of honey. You can get around 2 liters of beverage from this recipe. By keeping it inside the refrigerator, you will be able to expand its shelf life or share the beverage with your other blood-donating friends.
“Big kids have what are sometimes monumental challenges and problems in a very large and exceedingly complex universe,” says Marie Hartwell-Walker, Ed.D. Reaching the age of 18 serves as your rite of passage to do anything you want without your parents being able to stop you. Instead of using this newfound freedom to take part in meaningless activities this summer, though, you should consider doing things that are similar to the two mentioned above to increase your self-esteem and help a lot of people. If you do so, you may not ever need to contact a psychologist in the future.
How will you respond when the most popular boy in school asks you to skip your English class and join them swimming at the beach? How will you react if a group of your friends tells you to skip school for the day and watch a movie with them instead? Will you follow your conscience, or will you listen to them?
Children are often confronted with peer pressure, and reality therapy can assist them in understanding how to cope with these pressures in a constructive manner. “So one of the first things we can do is we can help children understand that our culture is full of influence attempts and peers are just another set of forces that are vying for our attention and are vying to shape our behavior,” suggests Brett Laursen, Ph.D. However, fighting peer pressure can be a lonely and challenging thing to do. Here are twenty tips for resisting peer pressure.
Some may mistakenly believe that being a teenager is the most carefree period of one’s life. But sadly, it’s far from reality, as far as the 2013 survey from APA is concerned. The teenage years involve a lot of stressful matters, ranging from simple peer pressure to academics, to post-school issues, such as college.
Modern youth do so much in their life, most of it being schoolwork. However, that hectic lifestyle contributes to 8% of the adolescent population being diagnosed with an anxiety disorder. Stress can wreak havoc on a teen’s mental and physical health, much like with everyone else. It only gets worse when the year-end comes around and with an avalanche of projects, activities, and exams, which earned the moniker “hell week.” Alarmingly, teens report higher levels of stress than adults, which shouldn’t be the case.
What are the prevalent youth mental health issues these days? Mental health problems affect around one in six teens. A teen’s psychological and emotional wellness focuses on difficult psychological experiences, negative emotions, substance use, depression, and other mental health challenges. Mental health experts and caregivers agree that early intervention in human services and programs should be done, especially for kids and young people. Know more about youth mental health challenges.
Youth Mental Health
We all can agree that in this new generation, the teens in our family members or neighborhood nowadays are adventurous, self-driven, and adaptive. Mental health in the young adulthood stage focuses mostly on difficulty handling experiences and environmental factors. This is a crucial period for adolescents and children, which is why they need to have optimal physical health as well as mental health in order to build resilience and strength to tackle feelings of anxiety, depression, stress, and other mental disorders.
Young people act as if they already know what to do with their lives because they usually base everything on their experience, not paying too much attention to youth mental health conditions or even physical health. This is why encouraging and supporting young people’s development to learn more about youth mental health symptoms and challenges is essential and significant.
Wrong Decisions Can Lead To Self-Destruction And Major Depressive Episode
There are certain things these youth can’t seem to handle in their physical health, more so their mental health. Their decisions fail them to the extent that it leads these children and adolescents to self-destruct and often suffer from poor mental health resources. That is the reason why a youth mental wellness expert or therapist wants to point out mental health challenges and warning signs. Learn more about adolescent and children’s mental and emotional development here.
Abuse Among The Adolescents: The Problems They Face That Affect Their Mental Health
One of the primary problems that the youth is facing is abuse. There are physical, emotional, mental, and sexual to be exact on the list. Most of these categories seem often hidden. In unfortunate events, some of it gets viewed and heard by the community as a norm. And what genuinely hurts is that these young people are to blame for the cause of these abuses.
People justify their actions in destroying young people by pointing out that the child deserves a beating, they know nothing about emotional control, they don’t get fully affected mentally, and they need to have a sexual experience. “Many people who suffer from sexual abuse or sexual assault can also suffer long-term effects from the abuse,” shares John M. Grohol, Psy.D.
Improving a child’s mental health and knowing their mental health needs in this aspect is crucial to their well-being.
Mental Health Issues Faced By Teens
If there is one thing that children and young people would wish never to experience, that is bullying. All the physical and psychological torments of constant bullying are unavoidable, and they must know how to recognize signs of bullying and have sufficient education on prevention strategies. There is no escape from the emotional and mental torture. The unfortunate part is nobody can seem to identify the issue, whether physical or mental. A lot of youths ignore physical beating, verbal harm, and even online threat. These people appear stuck in the belief that the youth is not capable of harming other young people like themselves.
Youth Mental Health Problems
But the truth is, if there is a will of delivering damage to others, all are capable of such devious acts. “Bullying is not only isolated as a problem among children and students in schools but also affects adolescents and adults as well,” Kristen Fuller, M.D. wrote. That is the reason why they must be given optimal importance and support, as suicidal ideation is tremendously common among these generations.
Drug And Alcohol Addiction – A Psyhcological Health Crisis
Ultimately, mental health is negatively impacted by alcohol and drugs.
Youths are open-minded and adventurous. But when these youngsters feel out of control, they believe that as adolescents, they can do anything mentally. That is the reason why the youths often use drugs and alcohol as a validation of their confidence and youth mental wellness prowess. These youngsters picture themselves as adolescents who are free and independent. They are now allowed to try even the considered worst influential evidence-based practices.
The youth feels entitled to their rights, they would not care about what young adults and older people would tell them.
Well-Being And Mental Health Care Of Teens
The problem with psychological health is their early openness to sex.
Perhaps one of the most controversial things that young ladies are experiencing is teenage pregnancy. There are lots of problems associated with its outcome, especially teen mental well-being.
Yes, we can all agree that the youth deserves a chance of finding and standing up for themselves.
But the mental idea of allowing the youth to accept the responsibility will only make them realize everything that revolves around it is a burden. That is the reason why the majority of individuals in the young adulthood stage have a higher risk of ending up in irresponsible youth parenting.
Since society and families are now allowing the youth to have their own lives and now consider their actions as part of community development, these youngsters are more unrestricted.
The thing that separates them from the other individuals is the youth’s peer pressure. It is where some young individuals are getting forced to blend in with society by other young people around them, related or not. It often looks like freedom, but it is entirely a provocation of what other bad influence people would want these youths to follow. Social media has made this pressure to conform even bigger nowadays.
Depression And Mental Health Services
It is the youth’s and children’s mental health conditions that scare nobody. There is the belief that emotional and mental health disorders don’t entirely matter because the youth are more capable of resolving them within a period. As long as these youngsters are willing and motivated, they can handle the emotional and mental health challenges. But what people in most communities don’t know is that these youngsters do not get exempted from any kind of damage to their social well-being or overall health. The truth is, they are the receivers of the whole of it. This is why it’s vital for them to have access to the mental health services they need, not just for suicide prevention but for their general well-being.
Self-Harm And Mental Health Care
Self-harm is the case where the youth find themselves craving attention. “Research reports one in twelve teens, mostly girls, self-harm and ten percent of them continue to deliberately harm themselves well into adulthood,” stresses Raychelle Cassada Lohmann Ph.D., LPCS. It is the youth’s way of saying they are not okay and that people should help them. But the problem with society is their blindness toward what is happening inside and often only looking at the youth from the outside. There is no consideration of trying to get to the root of their emotional issue and often judge these youngsters for physically harming themselves.
The most underrated issue that people don’t want to talk about, or open conversations not unless it has already happened. It sucks that society’s way of approaching mental health disorders is beyond everybody’s frustration. Even if these youngsters scream their lungs out trying to ask for help and treatment, nobody would recognize them. But when life is gone, the irony begins. People will suddenly become emotional and mental about the loss.
Observe and listen to our young people.
Our youths are not invulnerable. As adults, we must help, encourage, protect, and motivate youngsters to overcome their issues in life, especially mental health difficulties. We should do all the efforts to be an example or role model to them.
What Are The Four Barriers For Teens To Getting Help?
What Is The Main Cause Of Depression Among Teens?
How Do You Promote Good Mental Well-Being?
What Is The Most Common Mental Illness In Youth?
What Age Group Has The Highest Rate Of Mental Illness And Disorders?
How can we prevent mental health problems among the youth?
How do you improve adolescent mental wellness?
What is teen mental health?
How do mental health challenges affect the youth?
How do school districts affect teenage mental wellness?
Children and adolescents can become anxious, and experience worries or fear when a severe situation calls for it. These are common feelings when faced with uncertainty or discomfort. But some children or even adolescents have an overwhelming fear or anxiety that makes it difficult for them to deal with from day to day. With modern knowledge, anxiety disorders can now be treated. “If your anxiety feels overwhelming or difficult to manage, consider seeking mental health services, as professional treatment for anxiety can be very effective for many people,” suggests Jennifer Sweeton Psy.D.
Online therapy is a new form of counseling that not only adults but also teenagers are looking into – and for a valid reason. “Since you will be attending therapy sessions online in the comfort of your own home, you can often schedule your therapy sessions for times that are the most convenient for you,” said Kendra Cherry, MS. After all, the age range of youngsters who develop depression or anxiety continues to expand, but how people think about others who obtain psychological help has not changed much in some places. The troubled kids tend to feel more isolated, especially when the bullies figure out their issues and use it to make fun of them. Thus, the situation may not become tensed at all if the only folks who know about the mental health problem are the adolescent, their family, and the online therapist.