Teenage girls often worry about how others view them, and as a result, they resist expressing their honest feelings for fear of not being accepted. They may continue to talk a lot, but often they express what they think they ought to say. Teen experts Susan Morris Shaffer and Linda Perlman Gordon, LCSW-C, M.Ed. offer parents valuable suggestions to help develop a girl’s sense of self. This allows girls to thrive despite the normal setbacks of teenage life—e.g., not being invited to a party, having less than stellar athletic skills, breaking up with a boyfriend, or not doing well on exams. In Why Girls Talk – and What They’re Really Saying: A Parent’s Survival Guide to Connecting with Your Teen, Shaffer and Gordon offer parents essential tips for helping daughters find their passions and supporting them in these pursuits.
Shaffer and Gordon address the incredible challenges facing teenage girls today; from peer pressure to unrealistic expectations about beauty, lifestyle, early or unwanted sexual experiences, the importance of popularity, and fitting in. The symptoms of these constant pressures are manifold and take on such characteristics as eating disorders, self-mutilation (“cutting”), substance abuse, bullying, and depression. In this unique sourcebook, Shaffer and Gordon provide parents with invaluable tools in directing daughters away from distorted messages and negative self-image, and toward resilience, self-confidence, and high expectations. The book explains how to:
- Identify effective strategies for interpreting necessary information from the drama of girls’ daily lives
- Assist parents in developing skills to help their daughters establish a strong sense of self, while sustaining the parent-child bond
- Strike a balance between the stereotypes of the “mean girl” and the “nice girl” so daughters can create a sense of authentic self
- Explore parents’ boundaries to avoid over-identification with, and investment in, the social successes and failures of their girls
Shaffer and Gordon share a wealth of experience – personally as mothers of girls, and professionally as experts in the fields of gender and adolescent issues. In addition, they have extensively interviewed teenage girls, mothers, fathers, teachers, psychologists, and other teen experts to provide a comprehensive approach for effectively communicating with girls.
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