Peers exert a powerful influence on children’s self-esteem
Peers exert a powerful influence on children’s self-esteem. During the school years, children begin to compare themselves with their peers when evaluating their competencies. Children also have very specific dress and behavioral codes that contribute to who is popular or accepted (i.e., “in group”) and who is not (i.e., “out group”).
Discuss your own childhood experiences with regard to this in-out group acceptance/rejection issue, in terms of the emotional consequences for you. Address the following questions/topics:
- How did your parents handle this situation?
- How would/do you handle this situation as parents?
- That is, what are you willing to do to help your child be accepted by peers (e.g., not kiss the child in front of other children, or buy “cool” clothes regardless of cost)? Be sure to specify at least two adjustments you are willing to make and two you are not willing to make.
- Explain why you believe this is the right decision and how it will help your child.
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