The shaping of self identity in teens is one of the most important and most vulnerable processes of our lives. The self identity that we build during the adolescent years follows us into adulthood, which makes it an extremely critical period of time. Social media could be negatively affecting it, though.
We live in a world where nearly every teenager has access to social media, whether it’s through their own device, a friend’s, or a shared one at home. This level of connectivity has opened many doors in the way of communication, but it has also brought about questions of the negative impact it can have on forming minds.
Social media can negatively impact young girls
Social media is largely based on looks. We already know that the images and expectations depicted by the media can be incredibly harmful on a young girl’s forming mind, social media just makes it easier to pass along those messages.
While social media is an inspirational and revolutionary means of connecting with others, focusing on appearances is never good for a girl’s mental health–and that’s exactly what social media tends to focus on and “reward” with likes.
Instagram, Snapchat, and Facebook (just to name a few) are among the most used social media platforms by adolescents, and they all heavily rely on the approval of others through “likes” and comments.
If self identity in teens is based on how many “likes” you receive on a post, then there’s always going to be someone who has more, and for that person, there’s always going to be someone who has more, and so on. It’s a vicious cycle that makes absolutely no sense.
Many teen girls and assigned female at birth strive to get the coolest and most perfect photos just for their online presence to appear “active” and “fun”–even if they’re not actually having fun in real life. This type of behavior and thinking can lead to mental health issues like depression or anxiety.
Self identity in teens needs to be nourished and built by more than just “likes” and shares on social media. As parents, it’s our job to step in and offer support if we notice our child isn’t basing their self-worth on things that truly matter.
If you believe your child truly is struggling, it’s imperative to reach out to a professional for guidance.
Solstice is here for your daughter
Solstice is a groundbreaking residential treatment center for girls, ages 14 to 18. Our girls and assigned female at birth often grapple with depression, issues with self identity in teens, low self-esteem, anxiety, trauma, ADHD, and other emotional or behavioral problems when they come to us.
Through a unique combination of therapeutic programs based upon both traditional and holistic mental health treatment, we treat our clients with age and gender specific techniques. We strive to empower teenage people with the ability to believe in themselves and provide the tools and motivation required to instill these beliefs for life.
For more information about how we help self identity in teens at Solstice, please contact us at (866) 278-3345.