The Social Network of Self-Harm

Amidst the call-to-action for issues such as bullying, texting and driving, and substance abuse among teens lies an issue that remains hidden in social network feeds and under sweatshirt sleeves: self-harm. In a group of ten teens, at least one is self-harming, whether through eating disorders or physical injury. We know what these behaviors look like—cutting, starving, purging, criticizing—but more than one-fourth of young adults consciously avoid talking about these subjects and one in six parents of teens admit to avoiding the topic of mental illness. Though teens and parents share age-old experiences of adolescent angst, previous generations were without the constant barrage of images from the internet of physical (albeit Photoshopped) perfection, pro-ana websites, and self-injury how-to forums. The dark side of the internet promotes these activities and sets a grave stage for Millennials to escape from external pressures.
 
Millennial author Anna Caltabiano’s dystopian novel All That Is Red has gained recognition for giving a voice to self-harming teens and a glimpse at how for some “the intimate euphoria of pain can sometimes be all we have to remind us that we are alive.” The book is not meant to be autobiographical, but the adventure story integrates the topics of self-harm and isolation through the trials of its young female heroine. In writing All That Is Red, Anna set out to battle the stigma surrounding self-harm, an issue that is “always there, not just in the United States, but all over the world and we as a society still feel like it isn’t acceptable to discuss it.”

Caltabiano describes self-harm as “inflicting pain on yourself just to concentrate on this one thing you can control,” both feeding and numbing the isolation that teens feel in an increasingly fragmented…

 
 
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Millennial News Feed

Quote of the Day: “It wouldn’t be Thanksgiving without marathoning a television show.” –Female, 31, NV

The Pitches are back. Yesterday the first trailer for Pitch Perfect 2, the sequel to the cult hit 2012 aca-awesome movie, landed on the internet and the buzz is already huge. The trailer has been viewed over 6 million times in 24 hours. Pitch Perfect 2 will be out in May 2015, so fans have a while to wait, but as you can see in today's Instant Poll they'll be ready to watch. (Slash Film)

Last week, teen singer Lorde taught adults some new slang “the youthz” use when she tweeted out a compliment to Kim Kardashian. Lorde retweeted Kardashian’s internet breaking Paper cover with the comment “Mom,” which many not in-the-know interpreted as a criticism. But in reality saying “mom” to a celeb is a common compliment, meaning “adopt me/be my second mom/i think of you as a mother figure you are so epic.” (BuzzFeed)

Bailey’s is targeting Millennial women with a global campaign that “celebrates the ‘power of female friendship.’” To create a spot that would appeal to a new generation of women, the agency team and production team were predominantly female. The commercial features women around the world going out on the town together and the brand hopes it will show Bailey’s has “a meaningful role in a girls night out…[after] having had been hidden at home for far too long.” (The Drum)

The maker of the infamous Hot or Not site is back with a new, unexpected app for new parents and kids. His latest project, Cakey, is a free YouTube app that allows parents to create playlists of kid-safe videos, and choose from lists that other parents’ have shared. The simple app also includes an option that pauses video and says, “Okay, take a bite” for parents who are using Cakey to convince picky kids to eat. (Recode)

Two high schools in southern California were shut down this week thanks to threats that were posted on Yik Yak, the anonymous app that allows users to see messages from anyone in a 1.5 mile radius. Reportedly threats “of mass shootings, bombings, or other violence” made through the app is becoming a growing problem. (Mashable)

The Daily Instant Poll gives you a quick snapshot of how Millennials are weighing in on the topics that are making headlines, but there's more to our mobile network of 2 million Millennials than what makes the newsletter. Ten of our most recent featured Instant Poll results are available to Ypulse.com Silver and Gold subscribers, allowing them to compare the responses of various demographics. (Ypulse)

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