Social Media and Depression | Safe Surfing for Kids

Chris McKenna:                Hi, I’m Chris McKenna from Protect Young Eyes, and in partnership with Worksighted we want to bring you a series of short helpful videos so that you can protect your family from online danger. So, let’s jump right in.

More and more information is starting to emerge that shows the linkage between social media use in young people and depression. In fact, one survey showed that there’s been a 200% increase in the incidence of suicide in young girls ages 10 to 14 between the years 1999 and 2014.

One of the things that we point to in our presentation to parents is what we call the Instagram pretty cycle. What the Instagram pretty cycle looks like as a young person, I’ll take a selfie, and I’ll put that selfie out on social media, and in my mind I have an expectation as to a number of likes that I hope that this picture gets. Now if I’m a young lady, and I expect a certain number of likes, and it doesn’t get that number of likes, I start to believe the lie that I’m not pretty, that there is something wrong with me. Therefore, I start to give myself the label that I’m depressed. And when a young person starts to feel depressed, the next time they go to take a selfie they’ll take 50 in order to find the right one, and then 100 in order to find the right one. Sometimes this can be fueled by some of the comments that might be shared because we all know that we’ll often say things through a screen that we would never say face-to-face, and kids can be incredibly cruel through those screens.

I hope that this information is helpful for you. Please visit protectyoungeyes.com, where you can read our blog, you can register for our bi-weekly parent newsletter. You can also find us on Facebook where we’re constantly providing the most up-to-date information for parents. Thank you so much for watching this video. Protect Young Eyes in partnership with Worksighted wish you the very best as you take steps to protect your family today.