Pakistan has a large number of people falling under the age of 25 years. These young people constitute about 63% of the total population of Pakistan. Despite having a prodigious percentage of young population, the country has been unable to get any benefit from it so far. At present, Pakistani youth is facing grave issues, which if not resolved, will change this blessing into a burden. 

The core reason of why our young people are surrendering themselves to the hardships being faced, and retaliating in bizarre way, is because they feel “alienated”. They feel cut off from their parents and family, and from society as a whole. These young people lack a sense of personal identity and their purpose of life. This feeling of alienation results in anti-social behaviour exhibited by them, or in extreme cases, even death. 

In order to reach the disconnected generation, we first need to understand the root causes that result in this kind of behaviour. Every major sociological study during the last fifteen years reveals that the more disconnected a person is, the more phone he or she is to engage in. Today's youth are using mobiles and internet for more than just getting information and news. They tend to connect themselves virtually with other people through social media that indeed is a cheap substitute for in-person friendships and interaction. Some studies revealed that the closer youth are to their parents, the less they are at risk of exhibiting tumultuous behaviour.

Most of our young adults and teenagers have to face pressure to get good grades. Their parents are more worried about their scores than their happiness. This “high-score culture" is proliferating at a rapid rate in our society. In most of our educational institutions, emphasis is put only on conformity with textbooks which tends to limit students’ critical thinking capabilities. This kind of attitude adapted by the parents and our education system puts a limit to innovative ideas of students and develops a sense of competition against other students of their age. This results in developing a feeling of disapproval and revulsion for those who have not done well in their academic spell.

A research study carried out in 2008 based on the analysis of suicide reports of six cities of three major provinces; Punjab, Sindh and Khyber Pakhtunkhwa tried to calculate the national suicide rates. Age and gender standardized rates for the age group (20-40 years old) which accounts for the highest number of suicides were calculated in various cities. There have been a great number of students who committed suicides on scoring lower grades in their exams or failed to get admissions into the professional colleges.

Then there is another pressing issue of wrong choice of career. Everyone, especially parents who are influenced by society, make their children follow a direction mapped out by them in terms of career choice and professional life. Unfortunately, our youth is a victim of being painted in a traditional colour where they lose their own identity. Absence of career counselling and awareness issues result in making a false professional choice which leaves drastic effects later on. This then, gives rise to frustration and exasperation.

Youth goes through gruelling times in life. Long-term stress leads to anxiety and depression. Suppression of emotions for a longer period also leads to depression. A depressed person experiences many other snags such as mood swings, sleeplessness and changes in weight. A “support system" is necessary to tackle this very issue. If they are not given any attention, they may seek for alternate escape roots like drug abuse, self-harm, or suicide attempts.

There are many other problems as well, like drug abuse, suicide attempts, and career problems so on, that are besetting our youth. Despite the multiplicity of problems, it is still not rang too late to brainstorm possible solutions. It is necessary for parents and family members to connect with these individuals relationally and emotionally to salvage them. The parents need to enter their children's world and relate to them after catching a close glimpse of their affairs. They should remain updated about what is happening in their kids' lives, what problems they are tackling, and what needs to be done to get them out of their world of disparities and frustration. There are some circumstances that might seem trivial to parents, but they are not trivial to their kids. So, parents need to sensitize themselves to understand their kids' emotional swings and ups and downs.

Parents also need to make themselves available to their young ones to give them a sense of importance and let them open up their hearts. When young people feel accepted, they are more likely to be vulnerable and transparent, opening up greater trust and confiding in their parents to share their all issues.