A staggering 30% of high school girls in the United States who were surveyed by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said they had “seriously considered attempting suicide” in 2021, up from (a still shocking) 19% in 2011.
Panning back, almost 60% of high school girls surveyed said they felt ‘persistent sadness or hopelessness’ in 2021, an increase of roughly 60% over the same time period.
Though both high-school girls and boys reported experiencing mental-health challenges, girls reported record high levels of violence, sadness and suicide risk, the CDC said. In 2021, 57% of high-school girls reported experiencing persistent feelings of sadness or hopelessness in the past year, compared with 36% in 2011. Thirty percent reported they seriously considered attempting suicide in 2021, up from 19% in 2011. -WSJ
When it comes to boys in high school, 29% reported persistent feelings of sadness and hopelessness in 2021 vs. 21% in 2011, while 14% reported seriously considering a suicide attempt, up from 13% in 2011.
Following the survey, federal officials noted a spike in mental health among young people – particularly girls, in new data released on Monday which was gathered from a biennial survey spanning 2011 to 2021, of 9th through 12th-graders across the country.
According to mental health experts, girls are particularly vulnerable to anxiety and depression, given higher rates of harassment and discrimination they face compared with boys. And of course, now they’re all competing with TikTok Barbies who set even more unrealistic and unhealthy standards.
And as the Wall Street Journal notes, the evidence suggests that the stress, isolation and loss during the pandemic amplified mental health issues among young people who were already struggling.
“These data show our kids need far more support to cope, hope and thrive,” said CDC chief medical officer, Debra Houry.
According to the CDC, there LGBTQ teens are showing ‘ongoing and extreme distress,’ with more than half of these students reporting a recent episode of poor mental health, and 22% reporting an actual suicide attempt in the past year.