Eco-anxiety causing child mental health crisis, according to articles in Daily Mail 19 January 2020 and Evening Standard 20 January 2020.
Eco-anxiety is a term coined by psychologists and psychiatrists referring to feelings of anxiety, helplessness and guilt induced by repeated “climate crisis” claims. According to Caroline Hickman of Bath’s Department of Social & Policy Sciences there has been a massive increase in young people suffering from this over the past year.
Louis Weinstock, a London-based counsellor who helps children cope with grief and loss, also reports he is seeing increasing numbers of children who are anxious and fearful about climate change and ecological collapse. He commented to the Evening Standard: “I have young people more and more who are coming to see me who are really feeling complicated feelings when they hear about the fires in Australia or they are hearing about what is happening with climate change. They’re experiencing a world that seems to be veering into some kind of collapse and it’s very hard for them – and it’s hard for their parents to know – what to do with those feelings.”
Weinstock also attributes exposure to the intense news cycle as another source of fear and anxiety, along with “the exaggeration of emotions like fear and anger and outrage.”
Douglas Murray, writing in the Daily Mail, is more forthright. He blames the media for scaremongering headlines, high profile people like David Attenborough and the Prince of Wales for making dire predictions of doom, and politicians for kowtowing to the Extinction Rebellion children’s protests.
He wrote: “Too many of us kowtow to children or treat them as some special source of truth, yet the reason why so many are becoming ill with anxiety is precisely because so many adults in a position to know better are telling them that they should be terrified.” He concluded: “It is time we called this what it is: an abuse of children on a massive and unforgivable scale. Something that the generations that will succeed us will look upon with shame.”
Editorial Comment: The only fear we should be encouraging is the angels proclamation: “Fear God and give him glory, because the hour of his judgement has come, and worship him who made heaven and earth, the sea and the springs of water.”(Revelation 14:7) That fear here is the healthy reverence and awe which comes from recognising the power and authority of the Creator.
Instead of inducing anxiety and terror, this God-fearing leads to assurance that the world is not out of control, because the Creator who made it will sustain it until His purposes are fulfilled. This same Creator is Jesus Christ, who loves children and young people and wants them to come to Him and find rest for their souls. (Matthew 11:28-30) At the same time He also assures them evil will be punished, and full justice will be done to all.
Evidence News vol. 20,
29 January 2020
Creation Research Australia