Improving Your Own View

What’s more important, protecting the children’s lives when something actually happens or preventing these disasters from even happening in the first place?


Cut out the negativity, and remember that you can do it.

Molly Spence, Assistant Editor

Improving Your Own View

Written By: Molly Spence


As of April 19, 2023, there have been 14 school shootings that ended in tragic losses or severe injuries, here in the United States since January 1st, 2023. In 2020, there were a whopping 96 school shootings, nationwide. But in 2021, that number skyrocketed to 202 school shootings. There have been 2,067 school shootings since 1970. Pennsylvania is in the top 10 states with the highest number of school shootings, with 54. According to a  survey result, one-third of students reported that they do not feel safe at school. And all of those students surveyed reported they need more social-emotional support and mental health support. ( I encourage you to read this but do know viewer discretion is advised, but it is very logical and statistical information, it is solely meant to demand some sort of change. This is the fourth installment of my new series. So I ask all of you the question, what’s more important, protecting the children’s lives when something actually happens or preventing these disasters from even happening in the first place?

Welcome back to my series. Today I will be talking about mental health and self-esteem improvement. If you’re already this far into this, you might just want to keep reading, I promise it’ll help you. 


There is one way to end the stigma, by bringing a level of normalcy to it but also explaining to the public that just because you are different doesn’t mean that you are an abomination. So let’s talk about mental illness first. A mental illness is essentially a health condition that morphs your emotions, thinking or behavior, it can be a combination of all three. It can be shown through issues functioning in work, social or family activities, or even everyday life, but mostly when stressed its colors shine brightest. ( It’s nothing to be embarrassed about. The most common types in teens are anxiety, depression, and ADHD (attention deficit hyperactivity disorder).


According to, 7.6% of teens in America have separation anxiety, 2.3% of teens (also in America) have a panic disorder, but overall 2.2% of teens (in America) have a generalized anxiety disorder. According to, 11.5% of youth are going through severe depression right now in 2023. According to, the percentage of children from ages 2 to 17 in America is over 9.4%. According to, about 1 in 7 teens have some sort of mental health disorder in America. When you think about it, overall that is, it’s not a high percentage, but it’s not entirely low of a percentage. But there are approximately 22 students in a classroom at a time which means that there are about 3 students in each classroom of 22, with a mental health disorder. If we do 800 (an approximation for how many students are in our high school) there would be approximately 114 students in the high school with a mental illness, that’s about one whole grade level, and possibly more than that. Also according to, half of the children with a mental health disorder do not seek help or treatment. And this isn’t because of the lack of resources, it’s because of the stigma. People feel ashamed, embarrassed, and different because people will treat them differently if they know about their mental illness. The stigma in society towards mental illness just causes more mental illnesses. You could get diagnosed with anxiety, but then you have to deal with the stigma and when people find out, it’s going to be like a rumor, it’ll spread like wildfire, and that could possibly lead to depression. People with mental illness are very likely to develop another mental illness on top of the one that they already have. 


I’m not going to say, “Just be happy” or “Just be yourself”, that’s not why I am here, and like why would anyone say that, that just makes it worse. People need to understand that it’s not you’re fault if you have one, and there shouldn’t be a stigma, you shouldn’t have to feel embarrassed about a mental illness, because it doesn’t define you as a person. Just because you have a mental illness does not mean you’re any less of a human being than me or your friends, you’re just as much of a person as everyone else and you belong here. You do have a purpose and you are loved, and there are people all around you to help you, you just have to be willing to let them, but do not let society tell you how to be “you” because society is just incompetent. 


Now for self-esteem. Self-esteem is something that is honestly kind of rare to come by nowadays thanks to you won’t believe it, society. As I said in some of my previous series installments, society is one of the main roots of all of this violence and shootings. Anyways, self-esteem means confidence in your abilities and self-respect. There are 2 sides of the river with self-esteem, there’s the side with little to no self-esteem but then the other side is nothing but high self-esteem. Having too much self-esteem is not a good thing just as not having very much self-esteem is not a good thing. If someone with too much self-esteem goes around thinking they’re better than everyone, they’re going to act like it, and people are going to feel like they are and they’re going to compare themselves to that person, then the person comparing themselves to the more confident person will have lower self-esteem and it will continually lower. Lower self-esteem can lead to mental illnesses, like depression or anxiety, or panic disorders. It’s a chain reaction, but not the chain reaction Rachel Scott means. 


You may be wondering how to improve self-esteem, well I’ve got the answer. You could try getting more sleep, the average teen should get about ten hours of sleep every night. You should become more aware of your thoughts and beliefs, this can help you realize why you’re struggling with viewing yourself positively. Try meditation, it can help calm your thoughts and your body at the same time (maybe even put you to sleep). There are many different ways to improve your self-esteem, but you need to find one that fits you. Do some research, I’ll put some links to some websites so you can find which way suits you. 


Mayo Clinic Self-Esteem

Psychology Today Self-Esteem

NHS Self-Esteem

Better Up Self-Esteem