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Stress

By , Cincinnati, OH

     Do you remember a time when life was free of stress? A time when burdens were lifted away and you laughed without fear of the future. Think back: before things got difficult, before life got hard. When you think of this sweet bliss do you imagine childhood? Running. Playing. Living. Life should be lived to the full, especially when we are young. Frighteningly, this has ceased to be the case. Great sadness surrounds the fact that High School has killed childhood. Imagine: being at your utter breaking point -- you have taken on all you can handle -- then BOOM you are smothered with yet another assessignment worth 80% of your grade. The amount of stress that has been placed on our generation of teenagers has passed the point of absurd and entered into boarderline insanity. High School adolescents are no longer kids but in fact slaves to their own lives. 
     School is one of the main causes of stress for high schoolers, and sadly many teachers do not even seem to understand the effect that a burdening workload has on their students. Without realizing, each teacher demands that students apply more than 100% of their time, attention, and effort towards their individual class. Which can be achieved for one or two classes, however, seven classes and seven different teachers ask students to apply themselves in this way. The honor students are running on four hours of sleep and Starbucks Coffee just to take AP classes and maintain their 4.0. These students are the future. The hope. What will society do if they are burned out before they even get the chance to make a difference?
     Terrifyingly, stress only begins at school for teens. The pressure of sports, extracurriculars, and jobs, can drive teens insane. Numerous things that should be normal for teen life have become near impossible. For example, trying to do both a varsity sport and a competitive show choir or take part in the marching band and have a part time job. Then, on top of that, colleges want more. Harvard, Yale, MIT - all the colleges kids dream of - require you to be much more than just smart. Students are not only crushed under the weight of getting a 4.0 GPA and a 36 on their ACT but also burdened with being active enough in their community to be recognized. Will all of this add up and come at the cost of our teens sanity?
     On top of school work and extracurriculars students have to deal with the ever-present stress caused by friends, drama and family. By the time they are in High School, teenagers are faced with numerous worries, trials, and decisions within their own friend groups. The age old who-is-dating-who rumors and she-said-what gossip has been blown up to extravagant proportions. A single wrong word, wrong look, or wrong move can cost you friendships and respect, no matter how harmless you thought them to be. Teenagers live in the constant fear that they may mess up, and never be good enough.
     The world is changing. Kids are being thrown into the unknown and terrifying world of High School, and the stresses keep piling up. Between school, sports, and friends our teenagers have reached their breaking point. All of these reasons are what have caused teens to become lost and burdened. Although it can be hard to see, remember that teens have a lot going on, and try to go easy on them. Life should be lived to the full, especially when we are young.






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