Self-esteem and kids

Parents worry a lot nowadays about their kids’ self-esteem, but parenting expert Michele Borba told the New York Times it may be a misplaced concern. She said in a recent interview:

“Unfortunately, we misinterpreted self-esteem. Real self-esteem is a balance between two things. One part is feeling worthy and likable. The other part is being capable to handle life – having the skills and competence.

“What we did on the self-esteem bandwagon is we did the whole thing of helping the child feel worthy but without the competence; it backfires. Our praise, if we keep focusing on you, after a while, the kid begins to forget there’s others in the world. And the other thing is they become more and more dependent upon us. We kind of bubble-wrapped the child. We helicoptered them and we didn’t teach them the skills to be able to cope. We’re going to have to re-tilt the balance.”

Interesting, indeed. Your thoughts? Email

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