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Posts Tagged ‘manipulated’

         Today my 8 year old daughter is filled with joy.  Want to know why?  The thing that filled her with joy is just that a female classmate invited her to a birthday party at a local bowling alley.  This invitation made my child happy.  She started planning how much fun she was going to have.  She couldn’t wait to go pick out a gift for her friend.

         It is a simple thing… and yet it is not.  She is not an easy child socially.  She doesn’t always fit in.  But she is so excited about going to this birthday party. 

          Fitting “in” is not always easy whether you are a child or an adult.  We all have a need to be a part of the “in” crowd.  It is a couple of hours of acceptance for her which will be good for her self esteem.  Kids can be cruel if you dont wear the right clothes, have the right amount of money, live in the right neighborhood, belong to the right groups…those types of things.  We live in a small town so those kinds of issues are known about one another.

          Yesterday we went out and picked out the important birthday gift…with the right birthday gift bag to put it in.  People who seem to fit in with others as youngsters have a healthy self esteem.   Sometimes my daughter will say, no one likes me…the boys pick on me and say mean things about me to the other kids.  Self esteem is affected by the actions of others around us when we are young and growing; self esteem is important.

           This is an important tool for the teen years and adult years.  That self esteem keeps people from making poor choices when under stress, to make decisions like drinking or using drugs, or entering into healthy relationships when their peers put on the pressure.

           Adults can learn alot from watching their children struggle with acceptance.  It must be taught to not let peer pressure rule them but at the same time…to be accepted by others can be important in learning to accept themselves with or without the stamp of approval from others.  It is growing their judgement skills on knowing when to let someone’s opinion matter enough to affect how they conduct themselves.

            It is hard as a parent to let your child find their own way.  I just want to sometimes step in and say…my child is an awesome person.  Like her, treat her right, show her she is likeable for who she is….but i must let her make her own way in learning how to deal with fitting in and making good choices about who she lets influence her. 

           Those who can be mean or those who try to use their acceptance in the crowd to keep others out of it, have to be  understood by my daughter to learn who she can trust and why. 

            That way, she will understand more complex people as she grows older so as not to be manipulated or hurt.  Loving oneself and freely trusting others is easier when you learn to read others by their actions, body language and by how they treat you with respect.  My daughter is a smart girl; she will learn to let people into her life that know how to have healthy give and take relationships with each other.

             We must learn to understand that by our words, our actions, our body language we have a big impact on others whether we are children or adults.  *  The party was great…she had fun…the others had fun…and she was still filled with excitement when it was over!  This is as it should be.

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