Under Pressure: Confronting the Epidemic of Stress and Anxiety in Girls tackles the difficult job of defining, analyzing, and advising on the many stressors and pressures that are facing girls today. Author Lisa Damour, Ph.D. is well-versed in the subject. She holds a Bachelors from Yale, a Ph.D. in clinical psychology, writes a column on adolescence for The New York Times, and is the author of New York Times bestseller Untangled: Guiding Teenage Girls Through the Seven Transitions Into Adulthood, which offers a step-by-step approach to guiding girls through important life transitions.
In her newest book, Damour lays out the stark reality regarding girls and stress, tapping into anecdotal evidence as well as recent research on the subject. Anxiety is on the rise among adolescent girls, while it has remained static among boys. Researchers note that in the five years between 2009 and 2014, the number of girls who have reported regularly feeling worried, nervous, or fearful jumped up by a whopping 55 percent. Damour has also witnessed this firsthand at the all-girls’ school where she consults.
Damour emphasizes that healthy stress and anxiety does actually help us achieve our full potential. But while girls can benefit from having their negative feelings reframed in a positive light, parents still need to recognize when stress and anxiety are becoming a toxic, paralyzing force in their daughters’ lives. Damour offers actionable advice for a variety of situations girls face in their lives, as well as an extensive list of resources for parents who want to do additional research.
Parents who found a valuable resource in Damour’s Untangled will certainly want to add Under Pressure to their reading list. And those unfamiliar with her prior work will also appreciate her compassionate, balanced approach to supporting and nurturing girls through the most stressful times of their lives.