How to Teach Your Teen Body Positivity

teen girl standing in front of a coloured wall

*Collaborative Post

We live in a world that’s very image conscious. You’ve only got to look at fashion magazines to realise how unrealistic standards of beauty have become. When you’re a teen, switching off from feeling pressured to always look good can be difficult. Teens are forced to take part in many different social occasions, and at times it can be very distressing for them. It is, however, possible for you as a parent to teach your teen about body positivity, thereby developing a healthy habit for life.

Flaws are Real

There’s no good trying to hide the fact that people flaws because we all do, nobody is perfect. The important thing is to be realistic about body image and encourage them to love every part of them, show them how to embrace these little imperfections shall we say? Teach them how to own what they have been given and how to dress for their shape, size, height and so on.

teen girls legs, shoes in converse

Understand Their Perspective

When you’re talking with your teen about any kind of problem, it’s important to look at it from their perspective. Until now, their life has been very different from yours, and they’re going to have different priorities. The party they’ve been invited to might not seem like such a big deal to you, but your teen wants to make a good impression, and you can help them.

Trends Come and Go

It’s not very often a teen looks further ahead than just a couple of weeks. You need to help them understand that beauty standards will come and go but what’s most important is for them to understand is that it’s how they feel about themselves that matters. Give them some examples, and they’ll soon understand what you mean. The internet is a great tool for looking back at how beauty standards have changed. In the 90s, for example, slim was beautiful, whereas a decade later it was large breasts and bottoms that were considered the rage. Hairstyles are another example of how standards quickly change. It’s impossible for anyone to keep up with these changes so just because your teen doesn’t fit the current standard, doesn’t mean they won’t fit in a few years and you can help them appreciate that.

teenage girl in a denim jacket holding a bottle of coke

Look Out for Signs of Depression

Teens can become very depressed about the way they look, so it’s important to recognise the signs of depression. If they’ve stopped socialising with friends and become very angry and upset, they may be struggling and need your support and help. There are many things you can do to help your teen, and one of the most important is to keep the channels of communication open. You might have problems getting through to them in which case you’ll need to seek professional help. Centres such as Ignite Teen Treatment can help in this type of situation.

Teaching your teen about body positivity doesn’t have to be a big issue. Be a good role model and display healthy body positivity yourself. Talk to them about how they’re feeling and try to understand why they might want to change their body.

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