Devaluations and self-esteem "You are a wretch!"

How seemingly innocuous remarks can seep deep into the subconscious and affect our children's self-esteem.

Everyday scene, “caught” in passing: “Mom, I'm cold!” - “You are a wretch. My God, you are really not a boy! ”The girl, about 5 years old, does not react defiantly or insulted and mother and daughter are heading for the nearby house.

A harmless scene? Not really, I think. The mother seems to have a tendency to unconsciously send derogatory messages to the child. "You are a wretched babe" if not meant badly, is clear. And what does “you really aren't a boy” actually mean between the lines? But something like: "You are ONLY a girl." How is this child supposed to develop a self-confident female identity? Isn't it a shame that it is often mothers who hinder the natural emancipation of their daughters?

Even "harmless" comments shape self-esteem

How would you feel if someone came up with the harmless remark "I am cold" with "whiner"? Isn't it a natural need to communicate sensitivities?

How else could the mother answer that? I mean, she could just take note: "Really?" “Even if it continues to complain, it is better to offer solutions or consolation (“ Would you like my scarf? We'll be there soon! ”) Instead of devaluations. Because these remain in the soul.

Not only traumatic events have lasting effects. Even the seemingly harmless messages between the lines, because they seep into the subconscious and have a decisive influence on our self-image.

Maria Neuberger-Schmidt

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