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While they differ on the date, historians agree that the idea of the teenager was invented some time in the mid-20th century. Previously a no-man’s-land between child and adulthood, it acquired a name and a definition several decades ago, but every few generations we still need to reinvent this intense stage of life and its emotional tumult.

盡管他們對具體日期存在分歧,但歷史學家們一致認為,“青少年”作為一個概念是在20世紀中葉某個時候發明的。之前它是兒童和成年人之間的一個無人研究的階段,在幾十年前獲得了一個名稱與定義,但每隔幾代人,我們仍需要重新認識這一緊張的人生階段及其情緒動蕩。

新2代理网站So news this week that one in four 14-year-old girls (and one in 10 boys of the same age) are experiencing the symptoms of depression should detain us. It may be tempting to dismiss today’s adolescent moods, blithely, as something we have all endured. But the sources of young people’s anxiety seem to have changed quite fundamentally as growing up migrates online.

所以不久前的一則新聞應當引起我們的關注:每4個14歲的女孩(及每10個同齡男孩)中就有一個孩子有抑郁癥的癥狀。人們也許很容易忽視如今青少年的種種情緒,輕描淡寫地認為我們都經歷過這些。但隨著青少年的成長轉移到了互聯網上,年輕人焦慮的源頭似乎發生了根本改變。

The worst cases have serious real-world consequences. One MP told me of a visit from a family who wanted help to move not just out of the local school, but out of London completely. Images of their daughter, aged 13, engaged in what used to be called heavy petting, had been shared so widely that the neighbourhood had become a hostile environment.

那些最糟糕的個案有著嚴重的現實后果。有位議員告訴我,有一家人曾來拜訪他,希望得到他的幫助,他們不僅想離開當地的學校,還想徹底離開倫敦。他們的13歲女兒從事性愛撫行為的畫面被傳得沸沸揚揚,使他們所在的地段變成一個充滿敵意的環境。

新2代理网站Hemmed in like this, closely watched, what happens to the important juvenile process of “finding yourself”? Instead of a range of rebellions, to be embraced or ignored depending on individual preference and character, the teenage years seem to have become an obligatory performance, a high-wire act. No wonder these depressed teenagers have stage fright. One study of the smartphone generation suggests they are even opting out of spending time with their friends. Because they shy away from going out, they are “physically safer but psychologically more vulnerable”.

被這樣的事情包圍著、被密切關注著,青春期重要的“尋找自我”過程會發生什么?沒有一連串的叛逆行為,由于個人喜好和性格而受到接受或忽視,青少年時期似乎變成了一場強制性的表演、一種高空走鋼絲般的風險行為。難怪這些抑郁的青少年有些怯場。一項關于智能手機一代的研究表明,他們甚至不愿花時間跟朋友們相處。因為他們羞于外出,他們“在生理上更安全了,但心理上卻更脆弱了”。

新2代理网站I remember most of what I did in the 1980s, but it is comforting to know that hardly anyone else will, and not just because of the revolting mixtures of Cinzano Bianco, Malibu and Smirnoff that my friends and I smuggled on to the night bus. No one else cared. Photographs are few.

我記得自己在上世紀80年代做過的大部分事情,但值得欣慰的是別人幾乎不會記得,這不僅是因為當年我和朋友們把半干仙山露(Cinzano Bianco)、馬利寶(Malibu)和皇冠伏特加(Smirnoff)令人作嘔的混合物帶上了夜班公車。別人都不在乎。照片也寥寥無幾。

新2代理网站This drunken apprenticeship wasn’t exactly backstage with the Rolling Stones - our worst crimes probably involved eyeliner and hair gel. But these experiments, especially with boys, were necessary, and our mistakes, while keenly felt, were essentially private dramas. Not so today, where every triumph and disaster is documented and shared. If each experience has its significance multiplied, you are defined long before you are ready to tell the difference between image and reality. (Is it really a surprise that Instagram is found to be the most pernicious of the social media platforms when it comes to mental health?)

新2代理网站這種醉酒的“學徒經歷”并不像在后臺走訪滾石樂隊(Rolling Stones)那樣讓人大開眼界-我們最嚴重的“犯罪”可能還包括眼線和發膠。但這些嘗試,尤其是有男孩們參與過的那些,都是必要的,而我們犯的錯,盡管都被強烈感覺到,但本質上都是私下的大戲。如今卻不是這樣,每一點成就和不幸都會被記錄和分享。如果每一個體驗的重要性都被放大,那么在你自己準備好辨別形象與現實之前早就被別人下了定義。(人們發現Instagram是對心理健康最有害的社交媒體平臺,這真的很奇怪嗎?)

“Teenagers live their life more in public,” ponders Justine Brian, director of schools at the education support network Civitas: “They are always one Snapchat picture or Facebook post away from someone slagging them off.” She and I shared the peculiar frustration of judging a debating competition for secondary schools, supposedly on a motion about fake news. It instead unleashed a torrent of anxiety from the teenagers about managing their online personas. Our attempts to steer the sixth formers back on to the topic failed - they were possessed, as Ms Brian puts it, by “the idea that something terrible might happen online at age 16 and the rest of your life is ruined”.

“青少年的生活更公開了,”教育支持網絡Civitas的學校總監賈斯汀.布萊恩(Justine Brian)認為:“他們距離受到別人的貶損,永遠只差Snapchat的一張照片,或者Facebook的一個帖子。”她和我在給幾所中學的一場辯論賽當評委時,都產生了不尋常的挫敗感。這場辯論賽的焦點問題理應是關于假新聞,結果它引發了青少年們傾吐他們對于管理自身在線角色的焦慮。我們倆怎么都無法引導這些高中生回到正題上-按照布萊恩的說法,他們糾結于一個觀念而不可自拔,“認為在自己16歲時,可能會在網上遭遇一些可怕的事情,由此毀了自己的余生。”

新2代理网站What if a “frenemy” decides to spread lies? What if an Instagram photo is “stolen” and the poster’s good name ruined by its use to illustrate an article about underage promiscuity? This had happened to one debater’s friend in real life - the anecdote swung the audience.

新2代理网站如果一個“亦敵亦友”的家伙散布謊言該怎么辦?如果一張Instagram的照片被“盜”,被用作一篇關于未成年人濫交的文章的配圖,因此毀了發布者的名聲,又該如何是好?這是發生在一名辯手朋友身上的真事-這件軼事牽動了聽眾的心弦。

We older judges agreed that our own youthful exploits had been hidden from family, from teachers and future acquaintances. Growing up without this freedom to take risks should be seen as a real deprivation, even for these outwardly articulate and confident teenagers.

新2代理网站我們這些年長的評委承認,我們年輕時的冒失行為躲開了家人、教師及未來的熟人們的視線。在成長過程中沒有這種冒險的自由,應該被視為一種真正的剝奪,即使對于那些外表能言善辯又自信滿滿的青少年來說也是一樣。

This week’s report, part of government-funded longitudinal studies, shows that parents are no good at working out what is going on: they overestimate how depressed and anxious their sons feel, and seriously underestimate their daughters’ distress. Teachers also feel ill-equipped when dealing with pupils’ mental health problems, according to a separate study.

新2代理网站不久前有一份報告是政府資助的一系列縱向研究的一部分,它顯示了父母們不善于分辨現實狀況:他們高估了兒子們感到的抑郁和焦慮,同時嚴重低估了女兒們承受的痛苦。另一項研究表明,在處理孩子們的精神健康問題時,教師也覺得能力有限。

新2代理网站Paradoxically, miserable teenagers are most likely to seek out help and support from Childline online. Instead of cutting them off from the internet, evidence suggests they need help to develop better digital skills and emotional resilience, rather than an enforced smartphone detox.

矛盾的是,苦惱的孩子們最有可能向在線咨詢服務Childline尋求幫助與支持。證據似乎表明,與其讓青少年們和互聯網斷絕,強制他們戒掉智能手機,不如幫助他們培養數字技能和情緒彈性。

新2代理网站Schools have transformed their attitude to pastoral care in recent years, it is true. Where it was once sink or swim, now we have mindfulness lessons and counsellors. But fears of stoking moral panic must not stop us noticing: some of these young people really are in trouble.

沒錯,近年學校轉變了它們對關懷角色的態度。以往它們讓孩子們自主沉浮,現在學校有了冥想課和心理輔導師。然而,對于引發道德恐慌的恐懼絕不能蒙蔽我們的雙眼:一些年輕人真的深陷麻煩。