One last thought, a heads-up for parents. In this country, our daughters are in particular peril, although our sons are not immune to the situation by any means. I refer to the prevalence of self-imposed shaming. Girls in particular are prone to finding overwhelming fault with themselves, comparing themselves to unrealistic ideals. Will they be tall enough? Or too tall? Too skinny or fat? What about hair color, or eye color, or skin color, or eye shape or face shape or … What’s the one way to look that’s right? "If I don’t look right, no one will like me!
This has been expanded tremendously by the availability and (constant!) use of social media. Girls today go into social media and see the supposed ‘perfect’ lives that their media ‘friends’ live, and plunge headlong into despair when anything goes wrong for them. One 17-year-old I overheard on commuter train was saying to a friend beside her that she could not stand the shame of having not at least equaled a third girl’s record of ‘perfection’.
They seem to have no idea that the ‘perfect’ girls have their problems and fears too. Far too many of our daughters and granddaughters are suffering from severe depression engendered because they are chasing unreal expectations for themselves and see no hope of ever being ‘normal’, according to the dictates of Twitter or Facebook. Like they ever needed to.
By the way, in a recent interview, a former swindler was asked how he would start to find a mark to swindle. His reply? “I’d go first to Facebook. That’s the easiest. Everyone puts everything out there. If it’s not in their postings, breaking into an account and stealing their personal info is a snap. I can get into anyone’s Facebook account in about 15 seconds. I’ve seen kids post their (or parents) bank info and passwords.”
Please, cancel the social media accounts on their phones. If they won’t let you, stop the phone account. Get them to talk face to face.