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    • I happened upon various articles today about the steadily declining rate of teen pregnancy in the US, teens having less sex and using fewer drugs. And the question was, why? One analyst said screen time is helping, not hurting, because teens no longer need to physically hang out together to have a good time. They used to be together late at night with less to do, now they're more often at home texting each other as they watch the same show on Netflix.

      Another hypothesis was they get more exposure to the stories we wish they wouldn't get exposure to, but they learn about the realities of drug use, etc.

      What do you think?

    • I'm not sure that having less sex is necessarily a good thing, though fewer pregnancies probably is. Rates of depression and suicide are up, however, so it's probably wise to take a broader view. My memories of hanging out late at night with my high school pals are entirely positive (well, except for bemoaning the lack of sex) so I'm not convinced that this is progress.

    • There is such a lack of content control that while kids can educate themselves on drug use it is likely a sensationalized version rather than a factual one. Same for Sex. The type of information is not the best when looked up by kid terms, they will use their peers and surroundings rather than the more scientific method most if not all the time.
      Now I find the kids in our area are savvy enough to have multiple accounts and hide apps or delete and reinstall each time to avoid being found out. I use to just look in my dad's sock drawer for a playboy or hide the passed around one from school under my bed. being inquisitive is wonderful, however I fear for the slew of fake and sensationalized sources.
      Biz idea here, a kid version of urban dictionary using medical or historical reference material instead of porn links and hyped drug info.
      Kids get to be informed in a way parents would feel slightly less worried about. They will find out the path the choose to get there we may want to help guide them on.

    • I would rather have my two teenage daughters responsibly having sex (safe, consenting and fun) and using drugs (not addictively, and pot and/or hallucinogens, but not alcohol, speed or downers) than addicted to screens. And that is what they did. Both now mid-20's and more than ok.

    • pros and cons of both. But I totally disagree with the point of that article. a total shift from sex to screen isn’t the answer. It also isn’t something I would praise.

      Being a teenager at the end of the day is about pushing limits, boundaries & balance (or lack thereof). Before tech, we all did that differently.

      I think the risk with too much screen is the same as if your kid were in a sex/drinking phase in high school. Especially because - if you kid does drink a bit and has (hopefully safe) sex —- congrats, they’re like every other teenager for the last 50 yrs. Screens as a means of escape enable isolation, which in the long term is arguably more harmful.

      I am pretty involved with research on the ethics of neuroscience, tech & emotional/social development. There are some really interesting things coming up about this. There are a ton of factors that matter — sexuality, socioeconomics, race, ethnicity, siblings, wether parents are married, divorced, single parents, birth order, school (the effects of school environment is actually a massive factor

      for so many kids, access to screens is life changing, it’s the opportunity to change or escape their worlds. It’s a godsend. For kids from more privileged backgrounds, the technology use becomes a bit different. Kids get bored, technology enables the kids to channel that somewhere. And as we’ve seen with things like yik yak, & other “anonymous” sites - there are some serious risks there too. The rate of emotional maturity is more staggered than it’s ever been, partially because of this

    • I have no idea if screen time is a factor in causing these declines, but like we talked about in a previous post, less real social interaction worries me a lot.

    • I am pretty involved with research on the ethics of neuroscience, tech & emotional/social development. There are some really interesting things coming up about this.

      That sounds completely fascinating. I can't wait to hear about it all!