A healthy body image is especially important for teenage girls to grow into confident young women. Society has given teens an idealized version of beauty, and many try to achieve the perfection they see on magazine covers, in movies or on television. The truth is that even the most beautiful women have imperfections. Of course, the images that are presented in the media don’t show the physical flaws on the swimsuit model. One thing the world needs to understand is that flaws can be just as beautiful as perfection.
How Can I Help My Teen Build Self Esteem?
Parents need to help their children embrace their beauty whether they are short or tall, fat or thin. There is beauty in everyone, and parents teach their daughters to appreciate their attributes and to be positive role models.
Teach your children to eat right, exercise and don’t bemoan your own imperfections. Your daughter may roll her eyes when you ask her to wash the dishes, but she does pay attention and take her cues from you.
Be careful not to say negative things about your child’s looks or weight.
Help your teen make the most of her attributes by encouraging good personal hygiene and posture, healthy sleep habits and stress reduction. Focus on health over appearance whenever possible.
Help your daughter understand that the media alters images to promote an unrealistic idea of beauty. They shouldn’t expect to look like the super models, or movie or rock stars.
Emphasize that beauty is not the only quality they should aspire to. Intelligence, kindness, humor, a good work ethic and empathy are important attributes to have that will last a lifetime.
Offer support to your teen and encourage them to develop talents and skills that have nothing to do with appearance, such as music, sports, arts and volunteer activities. Show an interest in her passions and pursuits.
Acknowledge the good things you love about them, like how they can make you laugh or their dedication to schoolwork, their responsibility and commitment to family.
Teaching your child to love herself for who she is and what she has to offer the world will give her high self-esteem and build a happy young woman. If a time comes when your now adult daughter decides she wants to make a cosmetic change to her appearance, you can rest assured that she is doing it for herself and not to please someone else and that she will only be more strong and confident than before, and that you gave her the power to make the best decision for her.