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Anger management for Iran's post-revolution generation?

14 February 2014 [18:15] - TODAY.AZ
By Umid Niayesh - Trend:

Despite what the ayatollahs would have you think, something is not quite right with the revolution in Iran. A grand ayatollah comparing the pre- and post-revolution generations said that those who grew up during the time of the shah fought on the frontlines of the Iran-Iraq war while the next generation idly walks the streets without purpose.

Really matters little if this is just anecdote or was truly said by a senior cleric in the Islamic Republic. The underlying message is that something is obviously wrong with the post-revolution generation.

Last week the head of the Healthcare Department of the Tehran municipality, Mohammad Mehdi Golmakani, said that Iran plans to open "anger controlling" clinics in Tehran by next year, Iran's Mehr news agency reported.

He said he hoped that the plan will be implemented in Tehran to teach school children how to control their anger.

Hassan Ashayeri, professor of neuropsychology and psychiatry in Iran University of Medical Science believes that such kind of organizations should also pay attention to the roots of the problem, along with the symptom therapy.

"Based on my own experiences in recent years, we mostly try to eliminate the visible aspects of the problem which is not a permanent approach," Ashayeri told Trend, adding that the roots and reasons of the social problems are often being neglected.

The expert also underlined that the administration should attract NGOs to this kind of organizations to achieve effective results.

According to the statistics of the Iran's Legal Medicine Organization on average two people a day are killed by people using knives, sabres, hatchets and the sort.

Iranian media outlets quoted MP, Abolfazl Aboutorbai as saying every year some 1,100 people are killed in Iran in that manner.

Aboutorabi went on to say that some 90 percent of the murders happen in street fights between young people.

Iranian deputy Minister of Health and Medical Education, Ali Akbar Sayyari said in October 2013 that some 25 percent of Iran's elderly people suffer from depression. In mid-February Iranian media published a study, according to which depression is the most common mental disorder among the country's young generation.

Suicide cases in Iran also have increased seriously in recent years, with 10 Iranians on average taking their lives every day.

The suicide rate has increased four times in last 30 years in Iran, according to the statistics of the Legal Medicine Organization, meanwhile the figure indicates an increase by 50 percent in the world in the last 40 years.

Around 3,640 people committed suicide in Iran last year, head of the Iranian Legal Medicine Research Center Mahmoud Khodadoust said, adding that a suicide attempt is more often observed among young people aged 18-24 (28.2 percent of total cases).

In November 2012, Iranian media outlets quoted the head of Iran's Health and Treatment Committee Hossein-Ali Shahriari as saying more than 70 percent of people in the country are under psychological pressure.

Speaking of seriousness of economic problems in Iran, Shahriari said that the nation suffers a lot because of them.

Economic problems are the main root of the psychological problems in Iran, also according to the Ashayeri.

Commenting on the issue, the expert went on to say that drug addiction as well as poverty and unemployment are other predominant reasons.

"Iranian citizens also deeply affected by the reports about embezzlement cases and corruption in the country," he added.

On Feb. 3, Iranian President Hassan Rouhani said that economic corruption is widespread and confronting it requires comprehensive planning referring to unacceptable standards of living in the country.

Iran has fallen from 133 to 144 among 177 countries in terms of the Corruption Perceptions there, compared to last year, according to Transparency International's annual report released on December 3, 2013.

The country's rank started falling during the administration of ex-president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad (2005 - 2013).

The worse rank belongs to 2009, when Iran ranked 168.

Everybody talks about the Ahmadinejad's legacy of dramatic economic problems, but few people discuss his legacy of social problems.

The former president, who challenged world powers, will be remembered as a person who chanted promotional, fundamental and aggressive slogans.

But he should be remembered also for the suffering he imposed on the Iranian people.

His emotional efforts to return to the extremist ideas of the early revolutionary years did not solve any problems, but only worsened conditions.

Today's far more pragmatist president, Hassan Rouhani, faces a huge legacy of problems left behind by the former ideology based administration and is trying to fix them gradually.

Rouhani's main priorities seem to focus on fixing the economy and normalizing relations with other countries.

If Rouhani succeeds in overcoming the extremists` pressures, it will lead to positive results in terms of social and psychological issues. But that does not mean he should forget the revolution generation's psychological problems.



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