Selfies, Short Films, The Geena Davis Institute And The Media’s Effect On Self Esteem For Girls: Dr Barbara Becker Holstein, Psychologist, Filmmaker, Brings It All Together – http://bit.ly/2dvZtDF
Children’s Books That Build Self Esteem – Positive Psychologist Dr. Barbara Becker Holstein Announces No-Charge Download Of Two Ebook Samplers – http://ow.ly/NOAFN
#LikeAGirl – Positive Psychologist And Author Barbara Becker Holstein Release ‘Secrets – Diary Of A Gutsy Teen’, Book That Builds Self Esteem For Teen Girls – http://ow.ly/InkYF
Dr. Barbara Becker Holstein Gives 5 Tips On How Not To Crush Your Daughter When She Has Her First Crush – http://ow.ly/IcZVq
In Secrets: You Tell Me Yours and I’ll Tell You Mine, the girl really worries about getting older and how hard it will be to be a teen. She is very aware. Aren’t all of our girls? She is writing a lot of songs, a few of them appear in the book. In one of the songs she says:
“What is in store for me as I get older?
How can I leave behind so much of me?”
Yes, we do leave behind parts of ourselves at each transition in life. And of course, we get new aspects to ourselves. It is very hard to transition. If you have had to move as an adult, or started a new job, or maybe lived through a marriage that fell apart, you know how terribly hard transitions can be. However, sometimes we forget how hard it is to grow up. It is but a distant memory as we go through our busy days. Yet we need to remember and to find ways to help our kids transition.
Can you remember being a kid moving toward puberty, and the teen years? I am asking readers for input. Here is what one reader shared:
“When I was growing up I felt like I couldn’t do anything right. My parents were not ever happy and I was always fighting with my brother and sister. The cool kids in school made fun of me because I was little heavy and most of my clothes were made by my mother or grandmother. We didn’t have a lot of money, in fact I cannot ever remember a time growing up where my parents weren’t worried about how they would pay the bills and put food on the table.
I was thankful that they made my clothes (and in some varity of my favorite color – red) and I wore them proudly but the feelings of shame and confusion because of the kids at school put me in an emotional whirlwind. Sometimes I didn’t know if I was coming or going!
I was worried about it getting worse as I approached middle school and having older kids around that would probably push me about and make fun of me as well. I was scared to death of getting older and things getting worse. I just couldn’t see that life is what I make of it and if I’m not happy with something then I’m the only one who can change it. At that age you are more worried about what your friends think, what rumors are being spread, your school work, and trying to have a little peace and harmony at home then to look at how you can better your own situation and emotional chaos.
Then there was my little sister who got away with everything, blamed me for the things she actually gets in trouble for and who I had to share everything with. We shared a room, had bunk beds, and I never had my own play things. In fact I was stuck with my sister in the same room until I was 17 and my older brother moved out but that is a story for another day and a whole different set of problems.
Growing up is hard, but I think if we stay positive and teach our kids that if they think positive and work towards shaping their life to how they desire it to be instead of following the herd that they can be happy, even during the emotional roller coaster of puberty!”
What a moving story. Our reader overcame many obstacles. And the truth is that most of us do come through puberty and grow up with strong resources, some degree of optimism, humor, caring for others, the capacity to love and many other great traits. But it isn’t easy, and we owe it to our girls to help them through the process with wisdom and support. That’s what I do in my work as a positive psychologist. You may be doing it as a parent, aunt, teacher, guidance counselor, grandparent.
Try reading passages together with your youngster from either The Truth or Secrets. You will find it fascinating, as feelings and thoughts and memories start to be exchanged. This is one of the most therapeutic ways to make sure you have really ‘heard’ and understand your youngster and the bonus is she gets a better chance to ‘hear’ and understand YOU! It is a win, win for both.
The Truth: I’m a Girl, I’m Smart, and I Know Everything
(now available as an ebook or a paperback)
Starting a new school year, whether your daughter is returning to a school building she has gone to before, or you have moved and all is new for her, can be very upsetting. You may find your daughter nervous, perhaps tearful, not sleeping well or wishing she could go to a different school or even not go to school. Here are some ideas to help your daughter adjust:
Reassure her that it is normal to be nervous before we start anything new, even if we have done the same routines in the past. Tell her that you realize that sixth grade is not fifth grade, etc. and that you are on her side.
If you have moved or she will be changing schools, she may also be upset that she is leaving behind a best friend, or several good friends. See what you can do to make this transition less painful.
Maybe you can invite over some of her old friends for a pizza supper, or transport her back to where you did live so she can visit these friends.
At the very least, encourage her to stay in touch with them.
Also let her know that she will make new friends. It just takes time.
If you had something similar happen to you when you were growing up, take the time to share your story with her.
Try to get in touch with the feelings she may have. She probably feels lonely and/or jealous that her old friends may have new friends already to share with. These are very human feelings and you can do her a great service by sharing feelings you have had at times growing up and how they were resolved.
You daughter may also be scared that the work this year will be too hard for her. If she has already started school and complains it is too hard sit down with her and see what she is referring to.
Sometimes a child is correct and may need your help to go into school with her and sit down with her teacher or guidance counselor to see if the work is on the right level for her. Take her seriously. Even if she is exaggerating, remember it feels real to her for now.
Being your daughter’s ally can really help her. She doesn’t have the perspective we have as grown-ups to know that things feel strange when they are new. Help her understand that we are resilient to most situations and after awhile she will feel herself again and also feel relaxed and at ease in her new environment.
And best of all, with all of the above, by being your daughter’s ally, the two of you will grow even closer as you show you really care and you take the time to talk to her.
1) This girl’s first crush was Paul. Crushes feel very real at any age and you shouldn’t be made to feel silly or like it is trivial that you have a crush.
2) The girl discovered early on that she didn’t like it when her parents fight. She’s decided when she grows up she won’t fight over silly things with her husband.
3) Things like a special locket from a favorite aunt can mean a lot to a kid. Grown-ups should try to recognize harder how important they really are in a kid’s life and do nice things with and for them.
4) Moving is really hard. But the grown-ups in a kid’s life can help so much by making things seem as normal as possible, like when the girl’s father took them all out to a local movie a few days after they moved and they had lots of fun.
5) Growing up is hard. Parents shouldn’t walk away when kids try to talk. It is hard enough to get up the courage to ask a question or share feelings. It feels awful when the grown-up is ‘too busy’ or looks preoccupied.