Building Our kids’ Self Esteem: A Lesson From My Mama

Photo credit: shutterstock 30 January 25, 2017 By Dang

I attended a family friend’s 40th birthday yesterday. Walking in, first person I saw was my childhood church crush. I crushed on him from 11-18years old but not once did he ever speak to me or return my smile. Oh was he fineeeee… EVERYONE wanted to roll with him. We’ll call him David

I would talk about him to my mum like we were best buddies.You know…slip in his name during after church conversations like we rolled together all day and had lunch together after service

One Saturday afternoon, I went with my mum for choir practice and he also drove his mum to church. While our mums shared pleasantries, I tried to go talk to him so my mum could see we were best friends for real. As I was smiling and walking towards him, he was walking in the opposite direction, I whispered his name so my mum wouldn’t hear or see me act the fool, but he never looked back



My mum was watching, and she said to me once we started walking together “you aren’t really friends with him are you?”I shook my head&I couldn’t control the tears. She was furious at me, if I expected pity, I didn’t get it! Mum:”Never ever allow a man humiliate you like that. You are special, you are funny and intelligent. He should be the one moving mountains to be your friend. Is this how you cry after boys in this church? Stop it now! If no one sees how special you are, I do! And one day, someone mature enough will see it too. Wipe your tears and stop embarrassing me” Typical African mothers….scolding and loving you at the same time

It took me a minute, but I realized I don’t really know the guy, why was I so desperate to be in his corner? Especially when he made it his mission to treat me like crap

Yesterday, I saw David first since 2003. I walked past him and noticed him looking…I smiled inside, He’s not that cute anymore and he looked like he was 5months pregnant. After some minutes, he walked towards me and said “I know you right?” Me:”I’m sure you do”. David: “please remind me” Me:”it will come to you don’t worry”



Don’t mean to be sassy but he was already drunk&his breath stunk. He tried severally to catch my attention but I formed “busy” till he finally left me alone.I won’t lie though, It felt gooooooooddddd

At a certain age, we struggle so hard to befriend people who won’t take a second look at us, we forget that we are special ourselves. If only we could see the future, we would understand not to force anything. Hopefully, we can teach our kids earlier in life to be their own cheerleader and that their worth is not measured by being popular or joining a popular group

This post was initially published by diary of a naija girl (instagram) on the 18th of october 2015

SHARE THIS ARTICLE

30 comments on “Building Our kids’ Self Esteem: A Lesson From My Mama

  1. Gloria

    True. I crushed on my first boyfriend for years before I finally ‘grew’ to his taste and he asked me out . ofcourse I was way younger and he took advantage of that , coupled with his looks n charm. The day I broke up with him , he pleaded on bended knees but I was done , I shut the door at his face and left .till date , he still wants us back . lol . I can’t even find a single thing appealing in him no more .




    17



    3
    Reply
  2. Anonymous

    That was how i was chasing one girl ( I know this site is for girls but lemme just say something)… For close to two years I was seeking her attention… Till it dawned how special I was to myself… I stopped…. Few months later she realized how important I was and came begging but sorry I’ve moved passed gat phase…. Let’s learn not to forget his special we are…..




    19



    0
    Reply
    1. Dang Post author

      This site is for everyone willing to learn, laugh and evolve. We are just partial towards women. Notice we have “diary of a naija guy” too. Lol




      9



      2
      Reply
  3. Anonymous

    Haha this happened to me too, I practically idolized this nasty guy. I look back now and wonder how that ever happened to me, Lol!




    2



    0
    Reply
  4. Dee

    Goodness gracious. I wish I could tell my teenage self that. And also tell my mum a few things she could have fone differently. I thought about this yesterday funny enough. How I didn’t believe in myself, thought I was ugly, had low self esteem and allowed how society perceived me then (I was super tall and skinny) to influence how I saw myself. Years down the line I want to cry for those wasted years. I will not make the same mistake with my daughter. Excellent post. This resonated.




    14



    1
    Reply
  5. Anonymous

    Lollll! I so wish I have a story to tell…. I don’t give high shoulder and no 1 have tried giving me that because I have a natural stern gentle look… But seriously, this is an act that evolved, I tell my cousins, nieces, nephews and friends, that you get put down if you don’t love and appreciate yourself (self esteem) if you appraise yourself you don’t get washed.




    8



    0
    Reply
    1. @I_skima

      A natural stern look helps a lot yeah.. cos if one is always laughing with these foolish guys they look for a way to take one for a ride.. this I know for sure.




      2



      0
      Reply
  6. Msfunmibi

    I haven’t overcome this phase but I’ll get there eventually.I always want to be accepted by everyone but I learnt sometimes it’s not worth it.




    4



    0
    Reply
  7. Anonymous

    The same thing happened to me but there was no one around to tell me how precious I am and my girl power. He took advantage of me, I lost my confidence, my esteem and before I could understand it all, it has actually killed my courage. But after self motivations,declarations n understanding, I moved on… But I learned so hard.




    4



    0
    Reply
    1. Prines pixies

      Dear, thank God for you. It’s not easy to claw your way out of that maze especially as you did it without any support or encouragement. You must be something special cause many people I know would use that excuse to justify failure or an addiction. Well thank goodness that now you’re going to be some motivation for someone else and I think you deserve to be even prouder for that fact. Keep soaring. And if you ever forget or doubt how awesome you are, just remember how far you’ve come all by yourself.




      6



      0
      Reply
  8. Oluchi

    Awesome post. This happened to me a few years back and after I had finished disgracing myself with the guy; following him around and telling him I liked him, I sat myself down one day and after talking to myself I realised we wouldn’t have lasted if we had dated because he wasn’t even up to my standard. lol. Thank God I have passed that stage




    3



    1
    Reply
  9. Anonymous

    Some times when you look back at people you used to hang out with, you will be so disappointed that even if you are paid you will not try it again.




    5



    1
    Reply
  10. @I_skima

    My self esteem was crushed way before I was a teenage, spent my teens depressed.. entered into all the wrong relationships, had no one to talk to.. still trying all by myself but it’s essential we take what we experienced and help our children male and female alike. I can’t imagine my daughter going through what I went through. God help us all




    2



    0
    Reply
  11. Fadekemi

    I used to be one Margaret Thatcher back in high school but there was this guy in school who was so fine and girls always wanted him. While I was in the early stage of crushing on him(first week), he wrote this very stupid, long, pompous, overhyped letter about himself to me and how he couldn’t ever go out with me so I shouldn’t think of asking him to. I hated him immediately and never crushed on any guy ever again. I saw him last year and it’s like that fine face and body was peeled off him. Not just worth it at all




    3



    0
    Reply
  12. Viv

    This article is well timed…. I’m trying to teach my son to love himself and his own company.. He’s only 7 but he so desperately wants to please his friends, wants to be part of the ‘gang’ and is very hurt when his friends don’t show him as much love and compassion as he shows them…. This hurts me so much… But I’m trying to use it as a learning point for him….
    I tell him if people aren’t kind to you they don’t deserve your friendship..
    .I tell him everyday how good and kind he is…
    I tell him how I would love to be his friend if I was in his class…
    I tell him to be a leader…. To always remember how bad his so called friends make him feel and no never let someone else feel that way as it really hurts.

    I want him to be strong and confident as the big bad world well chew and spit you out if you aren’t!

    I want so many things for him…. And I hope that by reinforcing these positive messages everyday.. I’m helping to build his confidence and self esteem…

    May we all raise self-confident children who take every pride in themselves and empathise with others.




    33



    0
    Reply
  13. Asa

    Your mum was very observant and wise to give you such powerful advice. I want that be that kind of mummy




    5



    0
    Reply
  14. Pingback: Body Image:"I Compared Myself to Others and Became Focused on What I saw in the Mirror" Nicola King - DANG

  15. julie

    Been struggling with accepting myself the way I’m, funny enough people compliment my good looks but I don’t see it, guess that’s what happens wen u have finer sisters n people n ur family inclusive fans over them. They Neva see the good in you, outsiders gush over u but ur family doesn’t. I pray I break through this negative impact. Amen




    3



    0
    Reply
    1. Umm khad

      My dear, u r nt alone o. While I was younger I used to make fun of myself b4 people did. So when they did, it didn’t hurt so much. Today I am older, wiser and I know the world needs more from me than my looks. Besides am nt even ugly, I might not be your idea of beautiful. But it doesn’t matter, cos your opinion doesn’t count. Although I still have my down days, but I have learnt to talk myself out of it. You need to talk yourself out of it, cos the world needs more from you than your pretty face. Besides, who said u r not fine sef?




      3



      0
      Reply
  16. Pingback: When is A Good Time To Move Out of Your Parents' House? - DANG

  17. Funke

    This happened to me! Sadly I didn’t have a close relationship with my ma growing up so I took a lot of shit, I liked the boy in secondary school and he will always snob me and mock me sometimes, chai!
    Now he’s still in my dms trying to get a sister’s attention

    http://olotufunke.com




    0



    0
    Reply
  18. Aisha

    I used to have a crush on this guy who wouldn’t even look at me. I even dated his bestfriend just so we could all hang out. I saw him recently, he looked old and I was like truly beauty is transient. What did I ever see in him?




    0



    0
    Reply
  19. Lois

    Thank you for this article. My 7yr old is a bunch of activities; trying to stand out and be the centre of attraction. Very talkative, very expressive and I think quite forcy. If she wants to befriend someone and the person doesn’t seem to care as much, she starts to fret and even cry. Then when the friendship commences, she wants to be the centre of it alone. Wants her games played, wants to win etc. I love the fact I instilled in her self confidence and consciousness, but I do not like how she handles rejection when she’s not the ‘star’ of the ‘show’. Any ideas how to handle her as I do not want to iverso things so as not to destroy her confidence level.




    0



    0
    Reply
  20. Anonymous

    This also happened to me with my ex, he really humiliated me and made me feel like trash. I was so heartbroken always, crying still my mum noticed and asked what was wrong with me. I normally would lie but I didn’t even have the energy to lie, so I told her the truth and she told me the exact same thing your mum told you. Since, then I lave been working on my self esteem.




    0



    0
    Reply

Leave a comment

You can ignore name and email and it will be Anonymous.

%d bloggers like this: