You can enhance your child’s self–esteem by helping him or her develop a belief in himself/herself and his/her abilities.
Point out special talents and skills.
Let him or her know you believe in his/her ability to achieve results.
Praise his/her successes, both large and small.
Help him or her learn from failures without criticizing his/her efforts.
8. Being in Control of One’s Life:
By learning to make decisions for himself/herself, your child can learn to influence events rather than being a victim of them.
Encourage your child to make decisions appropriate for his/her age.
Help him or her to learn from the natural consequences of his/her actions.
Help him or her see how his/her actions and choices affect the events in his/her life.
9. Maintaining A Sense of Humor:
A sense of humor helps a person maintain balance and avoid overreacting to situations.
Teach your child to see the humor in life and its events.
Encourage children to laugh at himself or herself when appropriate.
Resisting peer pressure is one of the greatest challenges an adolescent will face. They may know an activity is wrong and may genuinely not want to take part, but the pressure to conform is intense.
Parents can’t make peer pressure go away and they can’t always be there to help shape their child’s decisions. But you can help them follow their own good instincts by teaching them a variety of ways to avoid giving in to direct peer pressure. Then, when they’re put on the spot, it will be easier for them to resist.
You might start by pointing out the most obvious solution, which is to firmly say, “No, I don’t want to do that,” and then walk away. But many kids are scared that such abrupt action will damage their relationships with their friends.
Point out possible repercussions: “We could get thrown out of school for this.” Or: “My dad would go ballistic if he found out.”
Use a little humor: “No thanks. I have a date with Aishwarya Rai and I hear she disapproves doing drugs.” Humor is one of the surest ways to calm a tense situation. You and your child can even have fun together coming up with different responses.
Suggest an alternative: Say “No” and change the subject or suggest another activity. “Did you hear what happened to Manish last night?” Or: “Let’s go check out this new mall.”
Reverse the pressure : Sometimes, the best defense is a good offense. “Arre, you know I’m not into that.” Or: “I thought you were my friend. A friend wouldn’t hassle me.”
Ask a question: “Why would I want to do that?” Or: “Have you thought about what would happen if we got caught?”
Make an excuse, even if you have to make one up: “I can’t. A friend’s coming over in 15 minutes, and I have to get home.” Or: “I’m training for sports, and I don’t want to do that.”
Give a reason: “No way. Dope make my breath smell worse than an ash tray!”
Go over the responses with your child, then think up different situations he/she might face and practice responding to them. Bear in mind that what works best will vary from person to person and among different peer groups, so leave it to your child to decide the most appropriate responses.
Finally, have your child find a buddy in his or her peer group. They can agree in advance to support each other’s positions. It’s a lot easier to stand up to peer pressure if you can count on at least one other person for support.
Talking about sex and drugs with your children is usually a conversation that most parents want to miss, and might even dread. However, it may be one of the most important conversations you ever have with your child, and you might even save her life.
Teaching children to say no to sex and drugs doesn’t start when your child is in junior college. You need to arm your child with some necessary qualities that will allow him/her to say no to these things on his/her own when he/she is faced with them on his/her own.
Your child having high self–esteem will really be the key element in his/her saying no in the face of peer pressure. The ways a parent can help raise the child’s self esteem is to allow him/her to make some of their own decisions – don’t always boss around and be strict and controlling with decisions, allowing only your decisions to be the “Correct ones.” Let them voice their opinions, and let them talk to you as to why they feels the way they do, and why they holds the opinions that they do. Having a reason why they feel the way they do is very important.
Later you will have to give her reasons why drugs and sex are no good for them (lowered chances of college, possible welfare, AIDS/HIV, other STDs, teenage pregnancy, health problems in general from both, emotional scars due to both, possible religious convictions). Your child will remember the conversation you have with them about why they should not do drugs or have sex. If you tell your child “Don’t do drugs or have sex– because I said so!” your child will, in the face of peer pressure, wonder “WHY NOT?” and there is a much higher chance for them to try drugs and have sex when they sees no reason why NOT to do those things.
Other ways to help your child to have high self–esteem might be to get them involved with sports or other extra–curricular activities. Research tells us that the more sports and activities a child is involved with, the less likely they are to get involved with drugs or have early sex. Sports teach discipline and give your child a sense of achievement, which can also help their self–esteem.
And lastly, don’t forget to just talk to your child! Try to talk to your child every day about her schooling, friends, sports, and her life in general. There is a happy medium between being a friend and a parent, and you can act like both, when the time is right. And there is a time for both. Lots of parents can be best friends with their children, as long as they don’t abandon their parenting role while taking on the friend role.
Even though teenagers sometimes act like it is “Not cool” for their parents to talk to them about sex or drugs, you need to. It is your job, and if you don’t do it, they may not learn the facts about early sex and/or drugs. Plus, teenagers want your information, guidelines and rules, although they would never admit it. Your rules and those “lectures” prove that you care about them.