Young adults are just coming into who they really are and still exploring who they want to be. It’s not abnormal for young people to feel uncomfortable with the expectation of being their best self when they may not understand who that person is supposed to be – leading to issues with self-esteem. Low self-esteem, while not uncommon in young adults, is even more prevalent in young people who are diagnosed with mental health issues like depression, ADHD, eating disorders, and substance use disorders. So, parents of young adults living with mental health issues may wish to understand how to help their children improve their self-esteem. Fortunately, there are a few things that parents of young people can do to help cultivate self-esteem in their emerging adult children.
Before parents can jump into helping their children with their struggles with self-esteem, it can be helpful for them to understand more about what self-esteem really is. Self-esteem is a necessary tool that young adults need to have healthy lifestyles and mental well-being. Essentially, it’s a person’s sense of their own confidence, worth, and standards. As a parent of someone who may be struggling with self-esteem, it’s imperative to recognize and accept that self-esteem isn’t something that is easily obtained and it’s not something that you can give them. But, rather, it’s something that your young adult loved one can work on for themself and improve from the inside.
Some ways that parents of emerging adults can help their children gain more self-esteem may include:
Young adults gain knowledge from the experiences and behaviors of their loved ones. So, if you’re a parent of a child that is struggling with self-esteem issues, it’s important to exhibit healthy behaviors that your child can observe. This may include eating healthy meals without restraining food groups, refraining from overindulging in alcohol, modeling healthy self-talk, and accepting your own body, mind, and soul. When your young adult child sees the healthy behaviors that you portray and your own self-confidence, they will be better equipped to showcase these own behaviors in their own life.
A big part of gaining self-worth as a young person is having experiences that shape the way how you see yourself which can help to build self-worth and develop core values and beliefs. As a parent, this means nurturing and encouraging the adventures your child will need to experience in order to build a healthy sense of self. So, don’t restrict your young adult child from experiencing the world – good or bad. This way, they can navigate the lessons of life they need to experience in order to develop their self-esteem.
Negative influences can impair a young adult’s self-esteem. But, you aren’t going to be around your young adult child every second of the day, telling them what to do and who to hang out with. But, you can encourage them to navigate life in a way that detects negative influences. And, give them advice about what to do in situations that may be harmful to self-confidence. A great way to do this is to stay communicative with your young adult child and remain a safe place of trust in order for you to be able to help your child navigate the negative influences that may be present in their lives.
If your young adult child is struggling with self-esteem due to living with various mental health issues, you’re not alone. It’s common for individuals who are struggling with the symptoms of mental health issues to understand that they are worthy of their own self-love. But, fortunately, help is available for emerging adults who are living with mental health issues. For example, Yellowbrick offers treatment and psychiatric care for emerging adults living with all types of mental health disorders and issues. Learn more about how we can help parents of young adults encourage healthy self-esteem and establish a life of mental well-being from our website.
Yellowbrick collaborates with adolescents and emerging adults, ages 16-30's, their families and participating professionals toward the development and implementation of a strategic “Life Plan.” An integrative, multi-specialty consultation clarifies strengths, limitations, and risks, and defines motivations, goals and choices.
A mental health condition that’s characterized by intense shifts in mood including both manic and depressive episodes.
People living with Major Depressive Disorder, or MDD, experience episodes of depression and sadness that are debilitating to daily life.
Those living with anxiety disorders experience high levels of anxiety and stress that interfere negatively with daily life.
A mental health issue in which a person’s cognitive function is impaired, resulting in symptoms like experiencing challenges with conducting speech, reading and writing, and behavior.
Mental health disorders that negatively affect a person’s behaviors, thought patterns, and function. People diagnosed with these disorders experience challenges with managing relationships and understanding various situations.
Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder is a mental health condition that people can develop as a result of experiencing traumatic situations, characterized by symptoms including flashbacks, avoidance behaviors, and more.
A mental health condition that is characterized by specific symptoms of forgetfulness and lack of concentration, which makes it challenging to complete necessary tasks.
Mental health conditions that interfere with a person’s eating habits, thought patterns, and behaviors in negative ways.
A mental health disorder diagnosable with the DSM-5 that is characterized by both obsessions and compulsive behaviors.