How Low Can They Go?

Adolescence can be a discouraging time for young people. When society tells kids that dignity is tied to appearance, they may start to feel ugly. Parents have high — sometimes over-inflated — expectations, hopes and dreams. They may belittle their kids, negating their accomplishments by neglecting to encourage them enough. Additionally, bullies may harass or abuse them, changing school into a negative environment. These pressures take a toll on children who are already confused from their physical and emotional changes. As a result, it can hide their uniqueness, talents and personality.

The consequences of low self-esteem may result in average or below average grades at school. Some students may sit alone in the lunchroom, feeling isolated and ostracized. Low self-esteem may even cause some children to commit suicide. The pressures of life seem to be an endless cycle that only gets worse.

Although parents can't expunge all of life 's struggles from their kids ' lives, you can guide them through the toughest years. Most importantly, you can teach your kids that beauty comes from within. Encouraging them to try new activities may help them discover a new talent. Attending sporting events, PTA meetings and communicating with teachers show that you are interested in what goes on in their lives. A boost of self-confidence provides hope; helping kids take pride in today 's accomplishments and anticipate tomorrow 's adventures.

Background Information

Journey of No Return
Sometimes as parents, we have a knee-jerk response to our kids as we're barraged by their numerous inquires and desires. Maybe it's time to stop being so negative.

When Not To Discipline
Parents should recognize when they should and shouldn't discipline their children.

When You Feel Like Calling in the SWAT Team
Are your children constantly testing you? This classic parenting advice will help you regain the upper hand.

Questions and Answers

After I spank my child, she usually wants to hug me and make up, but I continue to be cool to her for a few hours. Do you think that is right?

We'd like to be more unified in our approach, but how do we successfully move from two financial approaches to one?

How long do you think a child should be allowed to cry after being punished? Is there a limit?

I have never spanked my 3-year-old because I am afraid it will teach her to hit others and be a violent person. Do you think I am wrong?

It just seems barbaric to cause pain to a defenseless child. Is it healthy to spank him or her?

Review Frequently Asked Questions


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Other Things to Consider

Ten Things Toddlers Wish They Could Tell You
It can do wonders for the frazzled parent to know what's going on in the mind of your little one.

TransitionsHaving a Baby, Preparing for Adolescence

Life PressuresWorking Moms, Stay-At-Home Moms, Time for Family

RelationshipsParents and Adult Children, Blended Families