‘Social media has poisoned us’: young Britons on why they are unhappy

young people

Young people have said social media is one of the reasons they’re so unhappy. Photograph: WIN-Initiative/Getty Images. The Muslim Times has the best collection of articles on psychology

Courtesy: Hamid Rahman

Source: The Guardian

By Rachel Obordo and Guardian readers

From student debt to loneliness, young people in Britain share their reasons for why the happiness of 16 to 25-year-olds is so low

Research says that young Britons are unhappy and lack confidence in themselves and their future. But what are the reasons for this?

According to the Prince’s Trust the results from its UK Youth Index shows that three out of five regularly feel stressed about jobs and money, with half saying they experienced a mental health problems, and that the figures should “ring alarm bells”.

Respondents to a Guardian callout said their enormous student debt and the prospect of not being able to own a home were some of the reasons for their generation’s unhappiness. Here are some other suggestions from young people across Britain.

Student debt

‘Three years in employment and my debt is £46,000’: Alex, 23, software developer, London

I went to university to study physics with the hope of going into scientific research. But after considering factors such as student debt I realised the reality of the situation, and decided to look for jobs that focused around pay instead. I immediately obtained a job after uni but three years on – and despite paying monthly payments of approx £100-150 – my student debt is now at £46,000 due to interest.

‘Students study at a huge financial cost’: Eloise Millard, 23, student, Sheffield

Young people are often sold the lie they need to get to university to get where they need to be. Students study at a huge financial cost, and graduate only to be able not to find work in the fields they want to go into. University has become desirable because of the freedom it gives young people who have never lived away from home. We need to encourage more into vocational jobs and reaffirm to them that these are worthy careers.

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3 replies

  1. Interesting article, however, I feel this trend of being “unhappy, debt-covered from head to toe, and joyless” is global. The same situation is happening in the US, Japan, and basically in any country where the college education is ridiculously expensive.

  2. Life was generally easier in the past. Youngsters either left school at around 15/16 to enter a ‘job’; took on an apprenticeship; opted for vocational work; or went to university without fear of debt. Those were the main options. Now jobs are few and far between, there is little money and a great deal of pressure to own expensive equipment/ phones/ branded clothes/shoes/ cars. Youngsters become frustrated and depressed, join gangs, get involved in drugs and drink, leading to crime. We all need a sense of purpose in life, to have something to get up for in the morning, structure, routine, to be able to earn money in order to buy life’s necessities in order to enjoy a reasonable standard of living. All of this is lacking for too many, and there seems to be no future. So it is hardly surprising that many are not happy.

    • very well said. Yes. And this social media is a real concern. Where-ever we go all the kids are on the phone whole day. A huge challenge for the parents to get the kids off the phone. The result of this ‘over-indulgence’ on the ‘media’ is still not yet fully visible. What will be their future in a few years / decades? May Allah be our guide at all times.

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