Irene's Secret Tips, Products, and Interviews Geared Towards Showing Adolescent Girls How to Thrive and Excel in Our Cultural Times!

A Girl’s Self-Esteem Plummets at Puberty

Posted on: February 18, 2010

           One of the sad results that has emerged
           from studies about girls and self-esteem
           is that girls’self-esteem is usually relatively
           high in early childhood and then plummets at puberty.
           The usual theory presented to explain this
           phenomenon resolves around the issues of budding
           sexuality, body image, and societal pressures,
           but I am convinced that equally, if not more
           important, is the increased difficulty that
           parents experience in deeply demonstrating and
           communicating their love for girls.
          
           When a girl is an infant, love is poured
           out all over the place, in a wondrous 
           unfolding stream of cuddling, holding, feeding,
           bathing, giggling, laughing and kissing.
           Even as a girl grows up into a child, many
           of a parent’s tried and true methods are still
           appropriate and used freely.
          
           But then suddenly at the moment she’s leaving
           childhood behind, girls find themselves
           stripped of their many favourite tools
           of love from their parents. The typical
           excuse from a mother and father is that my
           girl is too big to be picked up and held.
           Tickling,giggling, and feeding are out;
           laughing, hugging and kissing are still
           possible but suddenly even these must
           first be negotiated past a minefield of
           teenage emotions.
          
           For parents who aren’t able to make sure
           that their love is heard, felt and experienced,
           this is a test indeed. And all too often,
           parents fail miserably to show a girl the
           love that she really needs during these years
           of puberty when she feels so volatile
           emotionally.
          
           Parents spend more time complaining
           about messy rooms, household chores undone,
           and their daughter’s choice of friends,
           clothes, and music than they do making
           sure that their heart connection is
           sound with their girls.
           
           At the moment in life when a girl most
           needs to be surrounded by love and support,
           parents often withdraw, which only sets off a
           spiralling series of actions and reactions: she
           is confused and angry, and then she withdraws
           even further until the parents have withdrawn
           all but the barest shreds of loving support
           that the girl needs.
          
           Do you feel that this is the case for you? 
           I so look forward to hearing from you!
          
           ~ Irene

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Irene Roth

Irene S. Roth, Freelance Writer for Teens, Tweens, and Kids

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