Are Hurtful Words Affecting Your Child’s Self-Worth?

After one of my UPower presentations a young lady came up to me and shared that she was being called fat. This is not the first time a young person – boys and girls alike – have shared that they are being disrespected. It happens too often!

I, too, have experienced being negatively judged. In grade 7 a boy in my class would say to me, ‘Sara, you have a big bum!’ One day he actually yelled it in front of a group of other students. Another time, during track and field, a girl came up to me and said, ‘You have fat legs!’ Both times I was so embarrassed and felt so hurt!

As a young person I didn’t realize that when people hurt others it’s often because they are in pain and want to take the focus off themselves and put it onto someone else. I needed to be reminded that it wasn’t about me, it was about them. Without that realization, I took those hurtful, disrespectful  words personally and thought there was something wrong with me, which had a negative impact on my self-confidence and my self-worth

I now know that what others choose to say says much more about them than it will ever say about the person they are being disrespectful and hurtful to.

I share with young people all the time:

<img src="second-banner-finalsay.jpg" alt="you have the final say">” class=”wp-image-19355″/></figure>



<p><strong>Here’s an activity that has helped me and others</strong> <strong>bounce back from negativity.</strong> <strong>Take the hurtful, disrespectful word – in this case – F.A.T. and change it to a positive, kind meaning:</strong></p>



<ul><li><strong>F</strong>abulously <strong>A</strong>wesome <strong>T</strong>een</li><li><strong>F</strong>un <strong>A</strong>nd <strong>T</strong>alented </li></ul>



<h5 style=Then Apply One of the Options Below Using the New Meaning

Option 1 – ‘Yes, you are right! I am a Fabulously Awesome Teen!’ (or the meaning they have created)Since they are not getting the reaction they expected, there is a good chance they will eventually get bored and stop.

Option 2 – If saying, ‘Yes, you are right! I am a Fabulously Awesome Teen!’ feels uncomfortable, they can just repeat, ‘I am a Fabulously Awesome Teen!’ to themselves as they walk away. Here are a few more examples:

Here are a few more examples:

U.G.L.Y.               Unique Generous Lovable Youth

L.O.S.E.R.            Lovely Original Smart Exciting & Respectful

For every hurtful word take each letter and have it stand for a positive meaning. Then use option 1 or 2 with your new meaning.

This activity teaches children that what they say to themselves is in their control and what they choose to tell themselves matters. The more they hear their own voice saying and focusing on positive words, the more their self-confidence and self-worth will shine!

Until next time…



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