The greatest health risk facing America youth in a changing culture

very good read on the effect of isolation on youth most notably male youth growing up and how it is a bigger health risk then obesity, smoking, drinking, etc.

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Did you read that article?

Excellent contribution to the discussion.

There is no discussion, yet.

Not with comments like yours.

Sure there is. You and I only talked about Scarlett Lewis a month or so ago.

Worry about yourself. When I want your opinion, I’ll give it to you.

You obviously didn’t read the article either or you would know why I asked.


Let’s discuss it. I’m ready. Our Canadian friend is not.

Scarlett Lewis is the mother of a Sandy Hook victim. She began to look into ways that social and emotional learning might help counter some of the loneliness and isolation a lot of mass shooters experience before they turn to murder. The OP article seems right in keeping with this, given that boys reach a certain age and are suddenly socially conditioned to think that platonic physical affection and emotional intimacy with another boy is effeminate or homosexual. It leads to social isolation as men don’t sustain early friendships with other males or seek out new ones to replace the ones that faded. That in turn leads to physical and mental problems.

Even if you leave the obvious link between social isolation/stunted emotional development and the psychological profiles of mass shooters aside, the difficulty so many males have in forming and sustaining close friendships with other males causes all manner of detrimental effects on their wellbeing. Fear of being perceived as weak, vulnerable, or homosexual definitely plays a role, and changing that mindset at a social level is critical.

There are several issues with this little theory, the first being they are all women. Telling us how boys feel. While admitting they change their behavior around adults. How much do teenage boys change their behavior around women?

And then there’s the blaming of the societal acceptance of homosexuality, the decline in church attendance, etc.

Antithetical to liberal beliefs and the secular puritan society so desired.

In other words, they are blaming themselves.

The link is to a Walrus article which writes about a different article (original in Harvard Business Review).

The Walrus version states:

IN 2017, FORMER US Surgeon General Vivek Murthy identified the most common threat to public health that he had seen: not heart disease, diabetes, or cancer—but loneliness. Isolation and weak social connections, … Loneliness is also associated with a greater risk of cardiovascular disease, dementia, depression, and anxiety.”

It provides no numbers.

According to the National Institutes of Health, 64,000 Americans die every year from drug overdose. (That is 175 a day)
(Heroin, fentanyl, and opioids really are a real epidemic in the US.

Even if only half the deaths are male and half of those young males, probably more young males die from overdose than from
cardiovascular disease,
depression, and

Really? are cardiovascular disease, dementia, depression, and anxiety such serious health threats?

How about obesity? Drug abuse?

I grew up moving around and consider a rural isolated farm my childhood home so I guess some degree of non-socializing is the norm for me.

Anyway I am skeptical.

Another interesting tidbit was when they mentioned the boys are getting their relationship satisfaction from their female partners. Why would that be?

And isn’t these little toads banding together to be friends causing the problem?

Are we supposed to force the football captain to hug the trench coat kid?

The greatest health risk facing America youth in a changing culture .

Thread title or root cause?

You and I are males, so let’s talk about it. Has your experience been different than what they are describing? Do you currently have close, affectionate platonic relationships with one or more men? Have you ever been in situations with other men where they joked that someone was acting like a girl, or gay, because the behavior was perceived as falling outside the (largely unspoken) socially accepted standards for masculinity?

No. But neither should we affix negative connotations to it should they actually want to.

Sneaky is a career Special Forces Dude born and raised with Latino machismo.

You might as well ask John Wayne those questions . . . pilgrim.

Define affectionate.

Dude, I was on an A-Team. I’m hardly the prototype for your average male. I was also their medic. We didn’t have secrets.

Did I have runnin’ buddies when I was a teenager? You betcha. Was I involuntarily celibate? I rode bulls, so not hardly.

Of course there were jokes. Usually about showing pain. We didn’t greet each other with hugs like the culture misappropriation specialists do now. We didn’t hold hands. Did I care about them? Of course, they were my pardners. Still do the ones that are still alive.

Do we? Hours of youtube videos on that very thing.

Wrong on both counts.

So you had male friends as a teenager, and close (if not emotionally intimate) relationships with the men on your team.

What about now?

The question goes directly to the theory the author is putting forward. I had my share of male friends growing up, and amicable (if not emotionally intimate) relationships with male colleagues my whole life. But currently? I’ve been married more than 20 years, and were it not for my spouse’s social connections and desire to get out and enjoy them, I admit I’d likely spend a lot of time alone. Whether the effect of that on my wellbeing is good, bad, or insignificant is what the author is exploring, but I have a had time believing my experience is an anomaly. Men simply don’t seek out platonic relationships to the same degree women do, and I tend to agree it’s to our detriment.