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The Brave Girl Blog Navigating Friendship Challenges and Confidence

Supporting Children Through Anxiety

Mar 08, 2024

One thing you may not know about me is that I love to learn.

I am surprised by my love of learning as I was not an eager student in high school, but today, I am excited to participate in the SPACE Program training with the Yale Child Study Center led by Dr. Eli Lebowitz. SPACE stands for Supportive Parenting for Anxious Childhood Emotions.

As a parent I have supported my child when they have felt anxious and I am sure you have had to support your child through their worry or anxiety as well. It can be so challenging to know what to do and if what you are doing is helping your child or making their anxiety worse.

One key insight from Dr. Eli Lebowitz is that our accommodations as parents can sometimes maintain anxiety rather than reduce it. Children are hardwired to detect threats, while parents are naturally motivated to protect their children. This dynamic can lead to a cycle of accommodation that reinforces anxiety.

The SPACE Program teaches parents how to become more supportive...

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Should I contact the girl's parents who are being mean to my daughter?

Jan 22, 2024

Many parents ask me for advice on supporting their daughters through the emotional turmoil of friendship troubles.

One common question arises: "Should I contact the girl's parents who are being mean to my daughter?"

I understand how confusing and upsetting it is when our daughter's experience hurt, and as a parent, you are actively seeking ways to support her. It's natural to wonder if reaching out to the parents of the girl causing distress would be beneficial.

With three decades of experience working with children and parents, I've found that reaching out to the other parent often doesn't yield the desired results you, as a parent, are hoping for.
Talking to the parents of the child who is causing issues can be complex and delicate.

Plus, there are different factors to consider before contacting the other parent.

The foremost consideration is whether your daughter desires your assistance and believes contacting the other parents would be constructive.

It's crucial to avoid a...

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Conquering Back-To- School Worries

Aug 11, 2023

As August begins, I can't help but feel the back-to-school blues, even though I'm no longer a student or a school counselor. Now, I'm a parent supporting a high schooler, and it's time to get myself and my son back into the school routine.

Does back-to-school stress you out too?

Thankfully, my son has been working all summer and getting up early, so we aren't too far from our regular school routine. Another relief is that he no longer experiences the anxiety he used to have during elementary school. However, I know that many families and kids struggle with the anxiety that comes with the uncertainty and stress of starting a new school year. In this newsletter, I want to share some tips on how to support your child through the worry and anxiety that often accompanies the beginning of the school year.

I'm also excited to announce an updated course that will be released soon, designed to support middle school girls and their parents, called "Survive and Thrive In Middle School." The...

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6 Tips To Help Support Your Daughter Through Challenges

May 31, 2023

Hi Brave Parents,

As your daughter navigates the challenges of growing up, it's natural for her to encounter moments of disappointment and unfairness. As a parent, you have the power to provide support and help her overcome these hurdles. 

Here are six tips to make the journey easier:

1. Listen and Validate: When your daughter is experiencing disappointment or feelings of unfairness, the first step is to listen to her and validate her feelings. Let her know that you hear her and that her emotions are important.
2. Provide Perspective: Help your daughter put things in perspective by reminding her of all the things she has accomplished and overcome in the past. Encourage her to view setbacks as opportunities to learn and grow.
3. Encourage Positive Self-Talk: Self-talk is a powerful tool for managing emotions. Encourage your daughter to practice positive self-talk by using affirmations such as "I am capable" or "I will overcome this challenge."
4. Help Her Find a Healthy Outlet:...

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Has your daughter been called this?

May 02, 2023

During a Sunday session for The Brave Girl Tribe, several girls expressed concern about how to respond when boys call them derogatory names, such as the 'B-word.'

I want to start by saying that this behavior is NEVER acceptable. Your daughter needs to know that she deserves to be treated with respect and kindness and that no one has the right to make her feel UNCOMFORTABLE or UNSAFE with their language or actions

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Popularity vs. Friendship

Apr 26, 2023

I recently conducted a poll on Instagram asking my followers if they had ever been rejected by a friend who joined a more popular group. Shockingly, 100% of them had gone through this experience. In The Brave Girl Tribe, this is a common topic among the girls.

Pursuing popularity can be problematic as it often overrides healthy social skills. For teens, popularity is more about social dynamics and seeking power and status, which can lead to fear and aggression among peers.

A study from the University of Virginia found that preteens who were most concerned about being popular tended to act older and more mature and were more likely to engage in unhealthy behaviors. Interestingly, the group of tweens who acted more mature were the more popular kids in middle school but were the least socially successful as young adults.

To help your daughter seek genuine friendships rather than the pull of popularity, ask her what qualities she values in her friends and if her current friends meet...

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