Like it or not, your kids are watching and listening closely to all you say and do, and forming value judgements based largely on your behaviour. As their primary role model, it’s important to understand which messages you’re conveying to your kids, even unintentionally. Much of a child’s self-worth is built or transformed not only by the way you communicate with them, but by the way you communicate with yourself. A crucial area to consider is how you relate to your own body around your kids and how this influences the formation of their body image.
DEVELOPING A BODY IMAGE
Karen Moross, counsellor, mediator and facilitator with The Family Life Centre explains, ‘Body image refers to a person’s emotional attitudes, beliefs, and perceptions of their own body and physical appearance. It also encompasses how you think other people view your body. It is clearly not just what we see in the mirror.’
Women are especially likely to complain of being overweight (even when they’re not) and point out an abundance of physical flaws they feel are so obvious to themselves, but barely noticeable to others. Karen says this is because our body image isn’t developed in isolation, but through a mixture of influences, including society, media, culture, family and friends, who all convey messages about bodies, beauty and attractiveness. This may encourage a belief that there’s an ideal or &l