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Understanding and Overcoming Peer Pressure: Body Concerns

Growing up means learning to live in the society and finding yourself in it. And one of the biggest issues your kid would have while growing up is body concerns. Being around peers, your child – especially in his or her teenage years – can be extremely sensitive about their body and overall looks.


Ladies do fall for the stereotype that bigger is better, but for them, it is the breast size to be concerned about. Girls and young women get preoccupied with their breast size as long as they believe bigger breasts will help them get attention from the opposite sex. Where does this all come from? Obviously, from social media where they reinforce certain body types to be the most desired. This way everything gets correlated with the size, and we grow up with this idea imposed on us every minute.


Apparently, ignoring the issue will not make it disappear, so telling your son to not worry about how big it is, or trying to reassure your daughter her breast size does not matter is not the best thing to do. It simply means you cannot help with this problem. But keep in mind – sometimes letting your kids express their feelings and accept the problem is the greatest part of the solution. Moreover, pretending the peer pressure does not exist or that it’s easy to ignore would not do anything good for your child.


What can you do to help to build healthy body image?

1. Avoid any comments on the size or weight. Don’t comment – and especially make jokes – about the looks of your kid or other people. The better idea would be focusing on the way such comments could hurt people. Explain to your kid that people come in all shapes and sizes and they all deserve to be respected. This will not only teach your child about diversity and acceptance but also help him or her with their own body image.


2. Teach your kid about the attraction. This should include what your child is attracted to and how the attraction is present in all the aspects of everyday life. Help your kid to find out what is giving him or her significance and pleasure in term of social, physical, emotional or spiritual spheres. This way you improve your child enjoyment and awareness of what is really valuable for him.


3. Go shopping together. Learning the way clothes play the huge role in the first impressions would be useful for your kid. If they tend to choose clothes that are either too revealing or not flattering to their body types, be sure to firmly and tactfully turn them to the right direction. Remember the peer pressure and how it might be strong and protect your kid from laughs and gigs he or she would get from poor clothing choices.


4. Pay attention to insecurities. Kids seek help and approval from their parents, and they try to speak about their insecurities. Your task is to notice the small hints of what is bothering your child and to help them deal with it. Take all the concerns seriously no matter how small and insignificant they might seem to you and let your kid speak freely about his self-doubt. As mentioned above, talking about the issue often is a huge part of solving it.


5. Teach your kid about the expectations. The sense of attractiveness is only good when it is realistic – otherwise, it might cause a lot of pain and insecurities. So, help your kid with understanding the attractiveness and its importance in his life. Explain that the first impression is not always the true one, and let them know the attractiveness is more valuable when found on all levels of communication, not just one.


Be supportive and attentive to your child’s feelings and emotions, and guide them through their life choices to help them build a healthy image of themselves.


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