Eating disorders are a serious issue with teenage girls and women today. 50% of kids over 6-years-old want to be 3 sizes smaller, and 80% of 10-year-old kids are afraid of getting fat, and 10 million kids have eating disorders. These are staggering statistics. I am reading a book called “Life without ED”
This book by Jenni Schaefer really goes into what it’s like to have a relationship with an Eating Disorder “ED”. Even though I don’t have an eating disorder it gave me a deeper insight into my wounded child’s belief system about not being good enough. Even though my belief system has been in place a very long time and I have worked on not listening to it, I still have to be careful about what I allow in my life. Just looking a a People Magazine will bring that belief system into full swing.
Girls of all ages are constantly bombarded with images, words and their own thoughts about how they should look to be accepted in the world they live in. What can we do as parents to help them and ourselves develop a strong sense of self to know that our beauty is on the inside.
- Keep the media to a minimum-magazines, TV, etc
- Tell your daughter and yourself that your body is nothing more than a vehicle to get you around, as long as it’s strong and healthy you’re okay.
- Watch the thoughts in your own head and whenever there is a negative thought about your body, replace it with a positive one.
- Look at the bigger picture in life, what is the real reason we are here.
- Keep reinforcing that what makes us beautiful is our essence, who we are, not what we look like.
- Love yourself for the unique being that you are and all of your wonderful qualities.
- Don’t listen to people who say negative things about you.
Mom’s help your daughters by looking at yourself in a positive light about your own body image and Dad’s watch how you talk about women’s bodies, it affects your daughters perception of their body image. Start talking to your children at a young age about this. If your daughter says something about her body in a negative manner, this is a great opportunity to talk to her.
I have been dealing with a compromised body image all of my life and it’s something I have to be aware of and constantly bring a positive light to. “Living without ED” isn’t just about eating disorders and it might give you some insight into your own voice inside your head. Anything we can do to bring awareness into our lives to help our teenage girls develop self esteem is worth doing.
I would love to know your thoughts about your own struggles.
Keep Loving Yourself, Debra