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"1 in 3 adolescent girls has been a victim of physical or emotional abuse from a dating partner."
– Interpersonal and Physical Violence Among Teens, 2008
Your teen may be experiencing patterns of an unhealthy relationship if:
Your Teen:
• Apologizes and/or makes excuses for his/her partner's behavior.
• Loses interest in activities that he/she used to enjoy.
• Stops seeing friends and family members and becomes more and more isolated.
• Casually mentions the partner's violent behavior, but laughs it off as a joke.
• Often has unexplained injuries or the explanations often don't make sense.
The Partner:
• Calls your teen names and puts him/her down in front of others.
• Acts extremely jealous of others who pay attention to your teen.
• Thinks or tells your teen that you, the parent(s), don't like them.
• Controls your teen's behavior, checking up constantly, calling or texting, and demanding to know who he/she has been with."
-Elin Stebbins Waldal

More than half of all mothers of girls criticize their own looks.

Only 2% of women describe themselves as "beautiful"
- Dove Campaign for Real Beauty (Unilever) "Real Truth About Beauty" (2005) study

Researchers generating a computer model of a woman with Barbie-doll proportions found that her back would be too weak to support the weight of her upper body, and her body would be too narrow to contain more than half a liver and a few centimeters of bowel. A real woman built that way would suffer from chronic diarrhea and eventually die from malnutrition. Jill Barad president of Mattel (which manufactures Barbie) estimated that 99% of girls aged 3 to 10 years old own at least one Barbie doll.
(Barbie boots up. Time Magazine, Nov 11 1996)

"When girls fail to acknowledge their own feelings, they further the development of a false self. Only by staying connected to their emotions and by slowly working through the turbulence can young women emerge from adolescence strong and whole." - Mary Pipher, Ph.D., Reviving Ophelia

We are always on stage for our daughters. Thus, we must embody the qualities we so desire for her. If we do not demonstrate strong, confident, assertive, self-loving, healthy behavior, her chances of valuing and developing these qualities in her self are significantly diminished.

By the time an adolescent girl graduates from high school, she will have spent about 15,000 hours with the media, while only having spent 12,000 hours in school. The media is cited as the number one source of pressure to be thin and to reach an unrealistic standard of beauty.

"Killing Us Softly" by Jean Kilbourne is an excellent resource for any mother interested in educating her daughter(s) on the effects of media and advertising in our world today.

Self Esteem & Self-Respect
"The thing that is really hard, and really amazing, is giving up on being perfect and beginning the work of becoming yourself." -Anna Quindlen

"Self-respect cannot be hunted. It cannot be purchased. It is never for sale. It cannot be fabricated out of public relations. It comes to us when we are alone, in quiet moments, in quiet places, when we suddenly realize that, knowing the good, we have done it; knowing the beautiful, we have served it; knowing the truth, we have spoken it." -Whitney Griswold

3 out of 4 girls with low self-esteem reported engaging in negative activities such as disordered eating, cutting, bullying, smoking, drinking and using drugs when feeling badly about themselves.

7 out of 10 girls believe they are not good enough or do not measure up in some way, including their looks, performance in school and relationships with friends and family members.

Research now confirms that the average girl's self-esteem peaks at the age of 9 and then plummets.

Self-esteem has become a crisis in this country. The majority of girls feel they do not measure up in some way including their looks, performance in school and relationships. Most disturbing is that girls with low self-esteem are three times more likely than girls with high self-esteem to engage in harmful and destructive behavior that can leave a lasting imprint on their lives.
(2004 Research for Dove’s Campaign on True Beauty)