Self-esteem is a big issue in the tween and teen girl community, as societal pressures often have girls worrying they aren’t pretty or thin enough. There’s plenty you can do as a parent to boost your teen daughter’s self-esteem and give her the confidence she needs to face college and the real world. Check out a mere few of the things you can do:
Talk It Out
Create a dialogue about the pressure to be beautiful and thin to help your daughter realize she’s hardly alone. If she’s bent on making physical improvements, find healthy ways of going about it, such as exercising together or learning how to apply makeup in a way that’s most flattering to her features.
Be A Good Example
Be a great example to your teen daughter! Make it clear that you appreciate how you look, but don’t put too much emphasis on physical attributes. Say “I really love how thick my hair is, I consider it protection for my brain, which earned two degrees,” or anything similar. Focus on the internal as well as the external and show your daughter what real beauty truly means.
Avoid Negative Comments
Never, ever make negative comments about your daughter’s appearance. If your mother made rude or snarky comments about your appearance when you were growing up, think about how it made you feel. Do you really want your daughter to feel the same way? There’s a big difference between constructive criticism and just being mean, so find ways to help you daughter rather than making her feel bad. Say “I think this top works better because the color flatters your skin tone, but I support whatever you want to wear” rather than “That top makes you look so washed out it’s ridiculous.”
Focus On Her Talents
Let your daughter know that you not only think she’s beautiful, but you also think she’s very talented! Tell her how proud you are of her latest athletic performance, or how amazing she sounded singing in the school musical. Focus on what she’s good at to let her know being a woman is about much more than physical beauty.
Discuss The Media’s Images Of Women
Watch TV with your daughter or pour over magazines with her. Point out stick-thin women or those wearing overtly-sexy clothing. This allows her to develop an eye and a filter for the media’s images of women rather than accepting them as true.