Telling your child they are pretty...
Do you think it is appropriate to tell your child they are pretty?
If so, why do you tell your child they are pretty?
If not, why don't you?
Please, keep this short and to the point.
sure, why wouldn't I if it were true. And, I wouldn't NOT tell a child they are pretty if they were less than that because there is always something to find appealing about every person. Heck, this is a child and they need to have positive messages given to them by people they trust - there's enough naysayers in the world that they will eventually meet who will want to knock them down.
A child's self esteem grows through positive remarks. But, a child also needs to know that it is not outward beauty that is the real priceless gem-that's just the image we project in our 'beautiful' focused society.
I think I would let my daughter know I think she is a special person, compliment her abilities and when she acts right and good. I don't know if I would really get into physical appearance because I wouldn't want her to think that it was an important thing. If she were a teen and it was in context, say she was commenting on herself and was being moody because a boy wouldn't notice her I would tell her I think she is a beautiful young lady and deserves someone that will treat her like she wants to be treated. Clear and to the point.
Yes. I told all three of my (now grown) kids that they were pretty/good looking (depending on whether it was my sons or daughter). They were, and they still are (and I still tell them from time to time). They're also people who have been raised to know that looks aren't the most important thing.
Why? Because other kids and teachers aren't usually going to tell kids they're good looking, so parents are kind of "it" when it comes to their hearing it. Lots of good looking children look in the mirror and don't really see how pretty they are. Those are kids who need parents to tell them; because even if they think their parents are "just saying that" because they love them, it will at least make them question their own dislike of their own appearance.
Some kids do like what they see in the mirror. Those kids need to be told too, however; because if they don't hear it from someone they may not trust their own judgment or what they think they see in the mirror. They may wonder if they're the only ones who see "pretty" in the mirror and wonder if there's something wrong with how they view themselves. They'll tend to reason it out this way: "If nobody ever said I'm pretty I'm probably not as pretty as I think I am. I'm not sure if what I see in the mirror is accurate or not." Not being able to trust what they see in the mirror is a bad thing. (One of the problems with anorexia is that girls look in the mirror and "see fat" when they're really thin. I can't say that not hearing they're pretty is the cause of that, but I do know that it's not good for a young person not to feel she can trust what she sees in the mirror.)
Absolutely. I have also told my children that I adore them and think they are wonderful. They will learn quickly that the entire world doesn't think so--but to know your family thinks you rock is invaluable. We are their safe place to fall. It is important for them to know how much you love them and it is part of our job as parents to help build self-esteem by giving them positive feedback on all kinds of things like art, chores, school work etc.
Yes, I do, I think that both my children are very pretty, so I tell them that all the time, besides I think it helps them gain self-confidence, just like telling them they are smart, fast, etc. Obviously, we shouldn't deceive them telling them they are something that they are not, but if we think they are... Also, it is a matter of taste or opinion, my opinion is that they are pretty, so I tell them, perhaps other people don't think so.
So, my follow up is this: What do you think happens if you have told a child they are pretty and as young adults (high school / college) they get into a car accident and are completely disfigured.
Do you think that having been told they are pretty/handsome growing up that this will impact their self-esteem?
If you do not tell your child they are pretty do you think this would have as much of an effect on them?
What is the definition of beauty? If it is physical attractiveness, then that is very subjective. I believe my children are beautiful (to me) and I do say so, but I don't believe they always ACT beautiful and I say so. Children need to learn that they present themselves to others as a whole package.
As for whether I would still tell them they are beautiful if they were disfigured in an accident, of course I would, for the same reasons. They would need love and support to overcome any outcome. My children will always be beautiful to me no matter what they look like and hopefully they will always know that.
What makes someone pretty? My children and I talk a lot about how personality can make people very pretty or very ugly, no matter what their outter shell shows. Before or after a tragic disfiguration, I believe it's what is on the inside that makes someone pretty. I also believe that as parents, it is up to us to support our child's self esteem - Spoil them with compliments! Great question to get you thinking!
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