TEENS ISSUES….LOW SELF-ESTEEM IN YOUTH

articles-djfinal“good enough…I’m too fat…I’m too skinny…I’m ugly…nobody likes me…”

Those are some statements that may sound like every day complains but they are only an expression of a result of low self-esteem.
It has unknowingly eaten it way into the heart and lives of youngsters. Teens are the most volatile and fragile stage of a being. Every decision taken whether positive or negative will affect them even up to adulthood. But Low self-esteem starts festering in the cradle age and the unchecked environment of the youngsters greatly nourishes low self-esteem. I’ll like to tag low self-esteem as a sneaky creepy monster. It doesn’t start in one day but it could take some their whole lives to battle their way out of it.
There are thousands even millions of teens who are living with the mindset that they are inferior and we always remain invincible and worthless.
Nothing is done to save them from themselves, instead the society we live in tagged them as “shy”, “timid” or “too reserved”
That is a misconception associated with low self-esteem but being shy, timid or too reserved are just few signs of low self-esteem.
As it goes unidentified, it cripples and prevents the affected mind from living up to his/her full potentials, self-doubts and even suicide.

A short story about his road down with low self-esteem,  Ade* is seventeen years old and believes he was an unwanted child.
“I’ve always felt like the odd one of my family because I’m less intelligent than my siblings and my parents never stop reminding me about it.’ “I grew up constantly hearing how stupid or how dull or how I’m never going to study a good course or I might just end up being a truck pusher because of my failing grades at school.” “Those negative words gradually and unconsciously sunk into me and I began to believe them. I gave up trying to improve in my academics. I was a slow learner even when I was a baby. It took me much longer time to learn how to walk and talk,’ he said.
“I was an angry kid and knowing I was never going to be better than my siblings and my parents won’t see any good in me, I gravitated into a bad lifestyle. I drank heavily, smoked marijuana and involved myself in petty theft at the age of
thirteen.”
“While I indulged in those things, they gave me a sense of belonging and made me feel good. I knew I was good at something…good at being bad.”
Ade’s story cut across many lives of teenagers. A lot you of us may be wondering now, what could be the cause of low self-
esteem? Few predominant causes will be discussed.

CAUSES OF LOW SELF-ESTEEM
The causes of low self-esteem are inexhaustible but there are some which have
come to light.

  • Body Issues (appearance): teens are particularly too interested in how they look. Either they don’t like their height, complexion, pimples, weight etc. When they lack confidence in their appearance, they tend to fall into obscurity
  • Child Abuse: This is another biting cause. Child abuse has the higher percentage of negative effects on teens. It comes in the form of verbal abuse,physical abuse and sexual abuse. A child is severely scarred by these forms of abuse and they are inflicted in the homes which ought to be a safe haven. Parents remain the greatest influence of their children. When their influence is negative or there’s zero influence, the outcome could be disastrous on kids.
  • Disabilities: It centers on deformities either from birth or through the course
    of life. The malfunction or the loss of function of any body parts could dampen
    the self-esteem of any person. Teens are very self-conscious and wouldn’t like to
    feel oddly different.

SUGGESTED SOLUTIONS

  1. Teens should be encouraged that they are blessings from God that comes in different packages, whether tall or short, fat or slim, dark or fair. Parent should take time out to show their children their individual beauties both inner and outward.
  2. If any case a child suffered abuse, a good child therapist could go a long way in helping the child come out of his shell.
  3. Parents should keep watchful eyes over their wards and look out for any slight change of mood or character and quickly address it.
  4. A healthy relationship between parent and child can never be overemphasized. “Know thy child”
  5. Low Self-esteem can be easily recognized but it takes patience for the sufferer
  6. to get over it.

Ade was one of the few that got help at an early stage and didn’t take it to adulthood. He’s currently receiving special counseling at his church and according to him, he’s got a new perception about himself.
“I know now that I can be somebody in life even if others say otherwise. The decision to be successful, to accept my flaws and love them, is mine. If you can’t love yourself, nobody will love you.” He said.

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One thought on “TEENS ISSUES….LOW SELF-ESTEEM IN YOUTH

  1. Hi DJFinal, I am a student who for a very important subject needs to make some sort of project. So I am making a website for teens with low self esteem and those who are questioning their sexuality.
    Do you think I could possibly use Ade’s story in my website? I am gathering a few stories and I liked this one. I cannot use it without your permission and of course, I will give you acknowledgement. So I would appreciate it if you would let me use it. Thank you so much!

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