Hanna Rosin
Hanna Rosin
Hanna Rosin, an Atlantic national correspondent, is the author of the book The End of Men based on her story in the July/August 2010 Atlantic.
  • A Letter From Palo Alto

    Last week, the superintendent of Palo Alto schools sent a letter to parents in the district warning that my Atlantic article (just posted online) would “cast a pall over our community.” This was before he had read the story. Then before the story had been posted, Palo Alto Online ran an item today headlined “Palo Alto officials brace for story in The Atlantic magazine.” That item generated angry comments, some of which were directed at said officials.

    For me, this served as a measure of just how sensitive the community is. Nobody in the middle of a tragedy likes to be scrutinized, particularly by an outsider. The only benefit to that scrutiny is airing some of the issues everyone is thinking about anyway.

    Our hope is that the story will spur a useful discussion, among educators, mental health experts, and teenagers. To that end, we will host some of that discussion in our new Notes section. While we can not share every reaction we receive, of course, we welcome contributors, especially from the Palo Alto community: hello@theatlantic.com.

    We have already received one contribution, from the Palo Alto Medical Foundation’s Meg Durbin, M.D., one of the Palo Alto officials” cited in the aforementioned headline from Palo Alto Online. Dr. Durbin, who received an advanced copy of the Atlantic article, wants us to know that the following letter has been “vetted by a wide variety of community partners: city officials, school staff and superintendent, physicians, and media specialists.” She continues:

    [The new Atlantic cover story] highlights some critical issues in our community. Some of our challenges are mirrored elsewhere, and others may hope to learn from our experience and our responses.

    As we grieve the loss of any youth, we are gratified by the enormous dedication and collaboration of local community leaders, teens, and families to address the myriad challenges the suicides have brought to light. We are facing these issues candidly, publicly, and with heartfelt compassion. We are guided by the scientific evidence about what works, by advice from national and local experts, and by the voices of our own youth. We have asked the CDC to help assess local suicide risk factors, to advise what we should supplement from the “best practices” already implemented.

    We are addressing the risk factors that can lead youth from stress to distress, to overt depression and anxiety, to suicidal thoughts and actions. Over the past six years, we have implemented and continually refine many specific steps and programs to improve youth well being: decreasing stigma about addressing mental health concerns, reducing academic and performance pressure, improving mental health care, reducing access to means of self harm, and improving public and media communication about these issues.

    Our city convened “Project Safety Net,” coordinating the work of the many public and private organizations focused on teen wellbeing. We have worked with media about to write responsibly about suicide and to reduce the risk of contagion fostered by sensationalistic reporting. Many resources for teen and families with concerns can be found at AFSP.org, HEARDAlliance.org, and 1-800-273-TALK (8255). Here’s a PDF containing a “Comprehensive Suicide Prevention Toolkit for Schools.”

  • Jamie Chung

    The Silicon Valley Suicides

    Why are so many kids with bright prospects killing themselves in Palo Alto?

  • Justin Mezzell

    The Tricks People Use to Avoid Debate

    In the art of evading meaningful policy discussions, all political camps have honed their particular styles.

  • Justin Mezzell

    Sex on Campus Is Impossible

    The complicated reality of consent

  • The Atlantic

    Old People Are Cool

    The effortless hipness of senior citizens.

  • Mike Coppola / Getty; Frame: 68 / Ocean ...

    The Mysterious Columba Bush

    Who is Jeb’s wife, what effect will she have on his campaign—and what effect will his campaign have on their marriage?

  • Zohar Lazar

    Among the Hillary Haters

    Can a new, professionalized generation of scandalmongers uncover more dirt on the Clintons—without triggering a backlash?

  • All photos by Greg Kahn

    Why Kids Sext

    An inquiry into one recent scandal reveals how kids think about sexting—and what parents and police should do about it.

  • Peter Yang

    The Overprotected Kid

    A preoccupation with safety has stripped childhood of independence, risk taking, and discovery—without making it safer. A new kind of playground points to a better solution.

  • John Cuneo

    The Madness of Matthew Weiner

    On the eve of the show’s final season, Mad Men creator Matthew Weiner talks about disappointment and redemption—and reveals his dreamlike perception of everyday life.

  • Chris Pizzello / AP

    Mad Men's Creator: Don Draper Represents American Society

    A conversation with Matthew Weiner about anti-heroes, why everybody loves Joan, and the real-life drama that inspires the hit AMC show

  • Jon Han

    Letting Go of Asperger’s

    Months after our son was diagnosed, the label officially disappeared. And that turned out to be a good thing.

  • 'I'm Supposed to Be Dead Anyway': An Interview With a Teenage Convict

    Brogan Rafferty, a central figure in Hanna Rosin's September 2013 magazine story, explains how he ended up helping a family friend kill one man after another.

  • <i>Akron Beacon Journal</i>/AP

    Murder by Craigslist

    A serial killer finds a newly vulnerable class of victims: white, working-class men.

  • Javier Jaén Benavides

    Changing Diapers Changes Everything

    Ideas of the Year 2013

  • Erin Patrice O’Brien

    The Touch-Screen Generation

    Young children—even toddlers—are spending more and more time with digital technology. What will it mean for their development?

  • Lena Dunham

  • Boys on the Side

    The hookup culture that has largely replaced dating on college campuses has been viewed, in many quarters, as socially corrosive and ultimately toxic to women, who seemingly have little choice but to participate. Actually, it is an engine of female progress—one being harnessed and driven by women themselves.

  • The Secret Shame of the Working Mother

    A woman who wants to make it home for dinner shouldn't have to sneak out of the office.

  • Primetime's Looming Male Identity Crisis