Your health:

Who remembers 'Stranger-Danger'?

Stacey Collins
Well, there I was discussing  the benefits of social media in opening up venues for writers to express themselves and practise their writing when along came a bunch of experts finding a new reason to express concern about the social media - the impact it has on love lives.

A man called Professor Andy Phippen of Plymouth University has surveyed 850 16-24 year olds and found that 80 per cent of those interviewed admitted they had used a smart phone or the web for sexual purposes.

One of the first things I remember being taught at primary school after the green cross code was ‘Stranger-Danger’ and the perils the cartoon characters faced in the 70’s video footage they showed to warn us off.

However, the footage shown in the early 90’s to my generation of troll collecting, culotte wearing, ‘the higher the socks the better’, children involved cars, sweets and men with big noses, much like the film Chitty Chitty Bang Bang.

Now emphasis is being placed on the dark side of the internet - where bullies and sexual predators lurk in the crevices, disguising themselves as ‘Freddie- the guy next door type’.

Some may be scornful of those who fall into the trap of being in contact with strangers on the internet but West Country sexual health adviser, Andrew Wilson of NHS Somerset, has explained that young men and women whose self-worth is low, may feel a false sense of belonging from undesirables who make them feel attractive by the attention they give them online.

You do hear about couples meeting on chat sites and marrying within a couple of months claiming that they’re met ‘the one’.

But for most people the reality is that the sense of fulfilment they desire is not met by these arrangements - and they end up feeling worse about themselves.

So, if you’re one of the 80%, perhaps you should remember the old stranger slogans and see if they still apply to your current situation.

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