The American Psychological Association has determined that more than 8 out of 10 Americans anticipate stress during the holiday season. But I don’t think anyone needed to hear those results to understand that the holidays are a stressful time for many us. The fact is that the holidays can be hard—and not just for adults.
Teens are not immune to the problems that plague millions of Americans during this time of year such as weight gain, family drama, money trouble, and depression. And when you’re young it’s easy to look around at all of the manufactured cheer and feel like you’re the only one whose feeling stressed or sad during a time of year that’s said (and sung) to be the most wonderful. So, here at Choices/TeenBeing, we created a Holiday Survival Guide for the November/December issue of Choices that lets teens know that we understand what they’re up against and gives them usable advice on how to handle all of the seasonal situations that make them want to pull their Santa hats over their eyes and scream “ARRRRGH.”
It could be the thought of having to talk to all of their relatives at a family party (the thought of which can be overwhelming even to adults), the worries of weight gain that arise after eating all of those cookies and mashed potatoes, or the seasonal sadness that can be felt for a variety of reasons—all of these concerns and more are voiced and paired with expert advice on how to deal with them. Whether it’s providing teens with an escape plan to use during a particularly awkward conversation (and speaking of awkward conversations, have you read our tips on how to have “the talk” with your teen?), giving tips on how to avoid overeating at the holiday table (try including some of the foods on our list of 10 Foods Every Teen Should Eat ), or ideas for homemade gifts, our guide has teens’ holiday needs covered.
We want teens to understand that the stress they face is normal, but that the holidays don’t have to be miserable. Do you have any advice on how to combat stress over the holidays? Tell us about it in the comments below!
P.S. Parents: Also, why not subscribe to Choices magazine as a Chanukah or Christmas present for your teen? Click here to make it so.