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New Research Shows that Teens are Growing up More Slowly These Days

New research conducted by the Centers for Disease Control [CDC] shows that today's youth are much less likely than their parent's generation to have engaged in risky behaviors such as drug and alcohol use and smoking. They are also putting off their first sexual encounters.

Earlier research has shown that teens are also less likely to have engaged in adult activities like dating, driving and working. And, they are also getting married and having children later. They don't seem to be in such a hurry to grow-up.

Some examples from Axios:

  • 66% of 12th graders surveyed in 2014 had tried alcohol, compared to 81% in 1994

  • 73% of them had drivers' licenses, down from 85% 20 years prior

  • 58% went on dates, compared to 83% of 12th graders in 1994

  • 56% worked for pay, down from 72% in 1994

And, as a result, binge-drinking, teen pregnancy and teen crime have all declined substantially.

Why is this happening? Much more research is needed, but there are numerous theories.

1. the internet and smartphones have "shifted social interactions online"

2. smaller families mean today's parents have more time to monitor their kids' activities

3. teens are expected to attend college and there is growing competition to get scholarships and qualify for the best universities

4. people are living longer so there is less pressure to reach adulthood quickly

Generally this is all very good news and there is plenty of time for jobs and families [and beers] later.

#culture #news

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