As we’ve learned that the change in self-esteem in adolescence is attributed to body image, positive feelings can increase when a teen feels more comfortable ‘in their own skin’. Parents can target areas such as: cleanliness and good grooming, clothes according to current style, dressing appropriately for body type, and good posture.
Addressing the tendency for female insecurity associated with puberty, teen girls benefit from being understanding toward the changes in their bodies as well as those of their peers. Self-esteem may be increased if they are coached that pubertal changes are normal and will happen to everyone, just at different times.
I think there is too much hype on telling kids that everyone is beautiful in their own way. Although there is truth to that, of course, it seems to send a constant message that physical appearance directly correlates with success and happiness in life. I have an Iranian colleague who once told me that actors and actresses are not so idolized in her country, even looked down upon for their career choice compared to that of a doctor, for example. Wouldn’t that be nice if we Americans were ‘obsessed’ with celebrity culture of who was saving lives and making a difference, versus which Hollywood starlets look best and which worst in a bathing suit. I think that developing internal resources is a better key than pushing for perfect appearance.
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