Saturday 19 July 2014

Recharging the Self-Esteem Battery

I've been so proud of Missy over the last 7 days.  

She's taken part in a 3k fun run, ran faster than me and got some great cheers as she raced over the finish line.  
Fun Run Medal

She was promoted into the next class at her swimming lessons.  

And yesterday, to top off a great week, she was awarded a Headteacher's Award for "all round fantastic progress and a wonderful attitude to school".

Headteacher's Award Certificate

We celebrated last night with a BBQ and some pretend fizz (well, it was pretend for Missy). I've also bought her a loom band kit (I gave in).

For a while these events will boost her self-esteem, a recharge until the battery starts to run low again.  Her self-esteem has been at rock bottom over the last couple of weeks.  She thinks she isn't good enough (often seen with adopted children), she thinks she is disgusting and ugly.  To hear a beautiful, funny and talented six year old crying her eyes out saying these words is heartbreaking.  And when her self-esteem battery is running low then she has no energy for other functions, like problem solving.  When she talks in this manner, we are careful not to just say "No, you're not" because in her mind that shows we haven't listened.  We are gentle, we say it's so sad she feels that way, we wonder out loud as to why she feels that way, we validate her feelings, we explain how we feel about her and gently give her examples of why she is a superstar.  Gradually her frown turns the right way up, the self-esteem button has rebooted.

We had a lovely conversation in the car this morning about how it's always good to try your best, whatever that may be for her, because trying over and over brings results.  I told Missy that she ran well, swam well and got the Award because she has been the best person she can be. She agreed and told me it was good to practice something a lot "a bit like the lightbulb man, Mummy".  Yes, just like Thomas Eddison.  

She loves school and her progress in reading has been fantastic this year.  At the recent open evening she received lots of lovely praise from all the teachers, not just her Year 1 teacher.  She loves to be helpful and kind.  Some of it is down to being a tad too compliant and not wanting to do the wrong thing for fear of being shouted at. But a lot of it is because she is genuinely a lovely, polite little girl.  

So, the Award, in the form of a certificate, will be going on her wall alongside her other certificates from school, swimming and gymnastics, all visual evidence of what a superstar she is.


  1. Self esteem needs a big boost here - conversation with Boyo this morning went along the lines of - 'you're the best Mummy in the world', 'you are the best boy in the world', 'no I'm not, what about Pickle & Pop?' (his cousins). 'You are my best boy, better than everyone', 'why, they are much cleverer than me'.
    Hmmm, time to boost his confidence!

    1. It's hard isn't, and I find it's a delicate balancing act. One false move and self-esteem goes flying.

  2. Well done Missy! These are marvellous achievements :-)

  3. We've struggled with self-esteem issues with miniwomble for most of her teen years. Last week she graduated and finally seems to accept that she does have something to offer. It can be a long road. I think i've only addressed it for myself in the last ten years


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