Helping Teenagers Cope with Low Self-Esteem
It is hard to see your child suffer from low self-esteem. You may often end up blaming yourself for your child’s condition. But you must try to find out why your child is behaving in a certain way. It could be peer pressure, inability to meet with academic expectations, change in body image, or any other reason. Normal teens feel good about themselves. They make friends easily and are very social. They also feel more in control of their lives. This may lead to grave outcomes, such as substance abuse, harming oneself, eating disorders, or untimely aggression and the likes.
Low self-esteem has been researched upon in great detail. Very often it leads to aggressive behavior. Teenagers may even think aggressively, which tends to be more dangerous than showing physical aggression. Teenagers with low self-esteem are at a higher risk of harming themselves, joining gangs, or even committing crime.
Alcohol and drug abuse
Teens with low self-esteem indulge in heavy alcoholism and substance abuse. Especially teenage boys like to have alcohol very often. They also indulge in drug abuse, and are likely to display reckless as well as aggressive behavior, such as having sex without protection, or cutting their arm with a blade.
Unhealthy eating habits
It might be an understatement to refer to eating disorders as “unhealthy habits”. Disorders require medical treatment and are likely to last for long. The reason as to why these disorders exist in the minds of teens with low self-esteem is because they have a low body image of themselves. Obese teenagers feel they are at fault because of being the way they are. They tend to indulge in binging because they get angry at society in general and also at whoever is nagging them to reduce weight, which in most cases are their parents.
Another common disorder found in such teenagers is Anorexia Nervosa. This disorder keeps the teenager away from food at all times. The teenager may feel hungry, but he or she will not be able to retain the consumed food inside for long. He or she shall end up vomiting out all the food. This disorder is painful and difficult to conquer. Sudden weight loss is a symptom of anorexia nervosa. It is certainly the result of an emotional health problem.
School life can be very stressful during teenage. Children are very observant of other “popular” kids. They notice their attire and feel bad about not having the same looks. It is also during teenage life that teens focus a great deal on fashion and celebrity lifestyle. It is when teens fail to follow the trends in fashion that they begin to resent themselves. Once they begin to chide their personality they do not like to go to school anymore, and start getting lower grades. It is like a vicious cycle, which is hard to escape from.
As a parent it is your duty to enhance your child’s self-esteem, by encouraging them to improve their talents and appreciating their efforts.
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