Build Her Bully Immune System

13 Ways to Boost Your Daughter's Self-Esteem

4. Don't say, "be nice"
Criswell notes that these two little words may be the worst advice parents give their daughters. Ask yourself: Do I want her to be nice or do I want her to be kind and strong? "When someone is being cruel, you don't need to be nice," says Criswell. "You need to stand up for yourself."

5. Teach tolerance
With major areas, such as race and ethnicity, most parents honor diversity. But you may need to check your words or attitudes when it comes to people who smoke, are morbidly obese or pierced and tattooed. As parents, we are modeling tolerance -or the lack thereof - at every turn.

6. Don't gossip
What is your daughter hearing when you catch up on the phone with a girl friend? She will look to the way she sees you interact with your pals for cues on how she should carry on with hers. When the kids are in the back seat, they can, indeed, hear you. Be kind.

7. Stand up for yourself
If someone cuts in front of you in line, politely speak up. Your daughter needs to see how simple such steps can be. Also, make sure your daughter understands that when you make a mistake, you can make it right. Admit your own mistakes and show her that hurts can be healed.

8. Be the parent, not the pushover
Often times, children bully at school because they have been allowed to bully at home. Does your daughter manipulate you or speak harshly to get what she wants? She will likely use those same mean-girl power plays on others.

9. Laugh together
Families who laugh together have happier kids. The more content your girl is, the less likely she will be to seek the approval of others. Make family games and activities a priority, not an afterthought.
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