As a parent in this new world of technology, it’s important to be ready to help your child protect their sense of self. Here are some helpful points and advice to keep in mind when talking with your child on social media use, celebrity culture and appearance ideals, so they can keep a positive self-identity.
THE IDEAL BODY CONSTANTLY CHANGES
Take a look at history. From the hourglass figure to the curvy 1950s Hollywood stars to the chiseled bodies of today, it’s clear that the so-called “perfect” body is always evolving. Luckily, our culture is moving towards being more inclusive of all body types and shapes.
SUPPORT BRANDS THAT SUPPORT BODY POSITIVITY
Many big brands have followed Dove’s lead in using real women who don’t meet the slim and tall body trend. Become aware of brands that support body positivity and share them with your child when shopping for clothes and other products. This will help ensure they grow up seeing images of themselves and feeling good about the body they’re in.
KNOW THERE IS A TEAM BEHIND EVERY CELEBRITY
It’s common for young people to become influenced by their favorite stars while building their own identity. This can result in them striving for some unrealistic qualities in themselves. Remind them that being a celebrity is a full-time job that can’t be done alone. List out all the time, money and people it takes for a celebrity to make an appearance. By helping your child see behind the celebrity curtain, they’ll lose the pressure to feel picture perfect. It will help them love the “real” star that they are, as they become confident in expressing their own authentic selves.
FOCUS ON TALENT
It goes without saying, but talent is so much more valuable than good looks. Help your child recognize that by focusing on a celebrity’s real talents, like a great singing voice or athleticism. This will turn their attention to things that are deeper than looks, like their own talents. This will also result in them valuing a celebrity for the right reasons, along with their own abilities. With the correct focus and encouragement, social media can be a positive place where your child can express their interests and talents, helping their self-esteem shine.
From 2004 to 2020, Dove is helping young people build self-esteem though their educational programs that will help parents, mentors, teachers and youth leaders gain the knowledge and tools they need for self-esteem education. These combined efforts have reached more than 20 million young people so far.
See how the Dove Self-Esteem Project is working to reach more young people and created a vision where beauty is a source of confidence.
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