Our daughter (9 years) is afraid to try anything new, from activities, making new friends, to trying new foods. How can we help her?
Encouragement and affirmation are probably the most important characteristics of our relationship with our children. Encouraging children in daily life experiences helps them to learn to trust themselves. As adults, when we are faced with challenges, we often experience fear of failure, rejection and uncertainty. A simple, sincere affirmation from someone telling us "You can do it, I have faith in you!" is significant.
A child faces new challenges daily, and developmentally, a nine year old wants to please, wants to do a perfect job, and is experiencing the subtle changes of puberty. That's a lot for anyone to manage! Encourage her to try and praise her for any and all attempts. Above all, resist temptations to tease her about fears and insecurities. Wendy Taggart
I am 15 years old. I am pregnant. I do not know how to tell my parents. I am afraid of how hurt and angry they will be. I know they will never trust me again. How do I tell them - or should I?
You must be feeling very frightened and alone right now. I am glad that you realize that you need to tell your parents. Yes, they will most likely experience feelings of anger and hurt - initially. I suspect you had similar reactions when you first found out. However, judging from your concern that it will hurt them and that they may never trust you again, suggests that you know they love you above and beyond anything that you may have done or will do in the future.
Timing is important. Make sure that you have time to tell them without you or your parents having to leave or attend to something within minutes of you talking with them. You may want to consider telling one parent first - whomever you feel is easier for you to talk with. Then state it simply and honestly - "I am pregnant; I need your help." Be prepared for strong emotional reactions. The strong feelings will pass and you will have the people who love you most in the world to help you sort out what your next steps will be. You won't have to feel so frightened and alone anymore. Wendy Taggart