Why are American kids experiencing so much anxiety, depression, and suicide these days? It’s not because they experience hardship and difficulties. They have it easier than any previous generation. They have money, gadgets, and plenty of leisure time. Kids in other countries have a way more difficult life than American kids, but experience less anxiety, depression, and suicide. So finances are not the issue. Suffering is not the issue. What is it, then?

American kids have no meaning, no hope, no purpose, and no community. They have no religious foundation to provide them with transcendent meaning and purpose. They have no source of objective moral values. The sheer number of choices they have is overwhelming. They have a thousand careers to choose from. They have a thousand colleges to choose from. And now, they are responsible for choosing their own gender identity and developing their own morality too. They are taught to focus on themselves rather than others. They are ruining their sexual lives with promiscuity and porn. They don’t know how to have meaningful, committed relationships. They have replaced a human community with a digital community. Friends take priority over family because parents are semi-absent from their lives. They are marred by divorce. They feed their minds with mindless media for hours upon hours a day – uncritically digesting worldviews that are contrary to truth. They don’t engage in meaningful work, but focus on entertaining themselves to death. They poison their bodies with a steady diet of sugar. They experiment with alcohol and drugs. And we actually have to wonder why they are so depressed?

What’s considered “normal” isn’t working. If we want to see a change in our kids, we need to teach them about God again. We need to teach them right from wrong. We need to help guide them into a career that is best suited for their temperament and talents. We need to reaffirm that there are only two genders. We need to teach them that true fulfillment comes from serving others rather than serving self. We need to take away their smart phones and social media accounts. We need to put porn blockers on their computers. We need to affirm that sex is only reserved for marriage. We need to encourage them to get a job early in life and get married. We need to put time limits on their media consumption and monitor what they listen to and watch. We need to feed them natural foods and do everything in our power to keep them from experimenting with drugs and alcohol. Parents, this is our responsibility. If we want to see the mental health of our children improve, we must take responsibility for restructuring our kids’ lives. It may be counter-cultural. Your kids may not like it at first, but making tough choices that are best for our kids is what parenting is all about. So let’s go parent!