Teen girls - competition(7 Posts)
I have been struck recently by the competition between teen DD and her friends. Not only is it necessary to be popular and cool but also it's also necessary to appear to be perfect in all aspects of life by being beautiful, clever, sporty, talented and well travelled. DDs friends seem to be trying to outdo one another in life and on social media with stealth boasts about things like extra study or working out with filtered photos of teen with abs 'amazing workout today now to exercise my mind' #extrastudy kind of stuff.
The pressure to be all round perfect is just immense and far removed from my experience of being a teen which involved very much trying not being perfect. I felt there was more solidarity among my peers about being a teen and what were going through whereas today appearing to be perfect and maintaining your own PR campaign seems to be everything. I think we supported each other more and felt less isolated because we weren't trying so hard to outdo each other.
Is this just a theme with DDs peers or common with most teen girls today?
Most of them do seem to aspire to be beige painted bovine faced gormless clones.
Teach your daughter that she is better than that.
DD's peers are very competitive but not like that. Theirs is a more healthy rivalry than you describe.
tbh, DD is on my cowbag list today. But she can be great for cheering on her friends' successes. She has her little realms where she wants to be top dog & gets very pushy about that, but she has no interest in being top dog at everything. Not the long list of stuff you listed, anyway.
Well-travelled? wtf is that about? Is this a wealthy circle?
I think it probably depends on the teenager. It's more visible with social media, but I think for those inclined that way it's always been so.
DD isn't competitive with her friends / other girls - but is theoretically-light-heartedly-actually-deadly-serious-competitive with the other science geek (who is a boy) regarding test/exam results.
I may have been the same at her age
I think it may be about what circles you move in. There wasn't much of the competitive spirit where I grew up, but when I went to uni it was obvious that some of the other students had experienced that kind of environment.
Otoh I was bullied at school whereas dd's friends were generally very supportive of her. She is trying to enter a very competitive field, but says all the other young people she meets at auditions are really friendly and cheer one another on. Luck of the draw, I imagine.
I think it's down to how your DD deals with it. Mine has suffered terribly with comparing herself to her 'perfect rich happy family' friends which has resulted in my DD having mental health issues as she has very low self esteem. We are a single parent family, only child, no contact with father, rented house and not much money family. But my DD is bright and did as well as her friends in GCSEs, but isn't enough when you think you're not as pretty, thin, funny, well dressed etc etc as the rest of them.
Thanks all for your replies.
I don't think DDs friends come from particularly wealthy backgrounds but they are possibly more competitive than the norm. I remember a teacher referring to her group as alpha females in the past
It's also difficult for her as many of her peers seem to have already decided on careers (doctor, lawyer etc.) and DD has not. Much of the chat is already about exams and uni and they seem to have it all mapped out. Not that there's anything wrong with this but there's a lot of talk and pressure so early it's hard.
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