Boys Moved Out of Poverty Suffer War-Like PTSD
But it's a great benefit to girls, says study
By John Johnson, Newser Staff
Posted Mar 12, 2014 7:27 AM CDT
Updated Mar 12, 2014 7:40 AM CDT
   (Shutterstock)

(Newser) – It might seem like a can't-miss idea for kids in poverty: Move them from poor neighborhoods into better ones. But a comprehensive study of the practice finds a surprising twist: It tends to work well for girls and badly for boys, reports Science 2.0. In fact, years later, the boys report levels of PTSD comparable to veterans of war, along with higher rates of depression and behavioral problems than their female peers, reports HealthDay. Researchers in the Journal of the American Medical Association say it's largely about the richer neighborhoods' attitude toward the newcomers.

"When the boys came into the new neighborhood they were coded as these juvenile delinquents,” Harvard professor Ronald Kessler tells the New Republic. “Whereas with the girls, it was exactly the opposite. They were embraced by the community—‘you poor little disadvantaged thing, let me help you.’" The study looked at 4,600 families in public housing, some of whom got vouchers to move out. Researchers say the results suggest that boys in such situations need more attention, perhaps through case workers or programs such as Big Brothers Big Sisters. (Click to read about how PTSD is going undiagnosed among civilians in high-crime cities across the US.)

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Showing 3 of 52 comments
okaragozian
Mar 15, 2014 5:16 AM CDT
Stupid conclusions from the obvious. If we keep soldiers in war, they will not develop PTSD so if we keep poor people poor, they will not develop PTSD. Let's keep poor people poor or let's not have poverty to begin with. People get PTSD when there is a traumatic change of environment - moving from poverty to middle class or high class environment isn't a bad thing in the long-run; in the short-run, you get PTSD.
Chuck Roast
Mar 14, 2014 9:39 AM CDT
Children with PTSD can be helped at www.lorettaholthypnotherapy.com
YONATAN C
Mar 13, 2014 9:54 PM CDT
As one of the more than two million unemployed workers, which lost their unemployment benefits in late last December, I am extremely disappointed with the Republican Party's refusal to pass the unemployment extension bill in the senate. On several occasions now, the Democrats have made several proposals to extend benefits to these millions of families without any financial means of support. The Republican Party chose to vote down this bill each time it was proposed to them. The party who prides itself as being "the party for family values", sorely lacked any values, when choosing not to help these struggling Americans in real financial need. As a life long Republican (former as of today) I no longer with good conscience can vote or support a party that acts against the best interest of the citizens. Refusing to pass this bill, and choosing to play "party politics" instead, is not in the best interest of it's citizens. We are now currently in the month of March 2014, and still no assistance forth coming for these families. Throughout these past few months, while the Republicans stalled and went on their many breaks and vacations, many of these families became homeless, some having to live out of their vehicles. There have been many reports of bankruptcies, and evictions, and many have become truly hopeless. How can the government in good faith, not help these unemployed workers because of budget concerns, while at the same time using tax payers dollars to fund corporate welfare and foreign aid? What about all the bank and airline bailouts?