Some people can't understand why teenagers often seem unhappy. After all, they have more luxuries and opportunities than previous generations. We asked eight modern teens about their most serious problems.
Read this text and the questions opposite. Then write the letter next to each extract in the appropriate box on the right. When two answers are required you can put them in any order.
A.Mick (aged 14)
Well, its has to be schoolwork, hasn't it? Everyone keeps telling you that your exams are going to affect the rest of your life. And there are so many subjects, and none of the teachers worry about how much homework the others have given you. I reckon that I spend more time doing my work than my mom and dad with theirs. And we are expected to do sport twice a week at my school as well. It does not give you time for much else, does it?
B. Elaine (aged 17)
Of course I hate school, but it's not that I'm against education. It's other stuff. I'd like to get a boyfriend, but the boys at my school are so shallow and stupid. I keep in with some of the other girls, but they can get really nasty sometimes. Like smoking. I don't want to smoke. It's so unhealthy, but all the other girls in my group smoke, and they don't like it if I don't. I mean, what am I supposed to do?
C.Fatima (aged 16)
Its not easy for me right now. I was born right here in this town, but some people still treat me as a foreigner. Not to my face, mostly, but you see it in the looks you get. And I like all the stuff that kids my age like, music, parties and all that, but my parents keep saying kids don't behave like that at home. They mean their home. I'm just not sure where I belong.
D.Sam (aged 14)
It's got to be my family. My brother is older than me, so he gets to go anywhere he likes and comes home late and no-one cares. But if I am five minutes late coming home, my mum won't let me hear the last of it. And when she goes to the shops, guess who has to look after my little sister? My dad keeps on at me about getting better marks at school, but wants me to help around the house. I just want them all to leave me alone.
E.Frank (aged 17)
I met this girl on holiday, she's from a town twenty miles away. We really like each other - actually we are in love. But our parents won't let us stay over at each other's houses. So I've got to take a bus every Saturday to meet her, because my parents won't drive me there. We only have a few hours together every week, and I'm worried she'll meet someone in her own town. My dad thinks that its just something I'm going through. He doesn't understand.
F.Allison (aged 14)
Its everything. I mean my body's changing, and I find it hard to control my moods. All my mates are so fashion conscious and they make fun of you if you have the wrong jumper or trainers, and some of that stuff is so expensive. My mum says I should just ignore them and wear what I like, but you can't, can you? And I want to be a doctor, but you are supposed to know chemistry, and I just can't do it. Sometimes I think my chemistry teacher hates me.
G.Joe (aged 15)
There's these two boys, ever since I came to the school they have hated me. They play stupid tricks on me, and try to get other people to do it too. I don't think they are really popular, but everyone is scared of them. It's hard to make friends, because everyone knows that if they are friends with me, they are a target. I know if I complain to my parents or the school it will just make me more unpopular.
H.Cathy (aged 16)
I hate being treated like a little girl. That's what my dad calls me - his little girl. I'm not. I'm almost old enough to vote. But I have to be home by eight every night, and every time my parents hear that I'm going out with a boy they make such a fuss. Why can't they trust me? I don't even get pocket money. If I want something I have to ask my mom or my dad for it. It's not that they won't let me have it, it's just that they always have to control me. I hate that.