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Male Body Issues in Teens That All Parents Should Know

Although I work with a large percentage of tween and teen girls (primarily because they're the ones who show up most to my workshops) and also refer many out to therapists and treatment centers, I do see pre-teen and teenage boys who are suffering with both body image and self-esteem - two entirely different issues. I'm very much a statistics person. I research a ton because I need to back up my facts before I speak at any school or parenting event.

80% of 10 year olds are afraid of being fat. 30% of teen boys exhibit unhealthy behaviors with their body image versus 50% of girls. In their teen years, tweens and teens are skipping meals, taking laxatives, vaping (thinking they'll lose weight if they do this), and others are developing eating disorders (bulimia or anorexia). Even though these stats are higher with girls, we cannot dismiss the fact that teenage boys are also struggling with both body image AND self-esteem.

PLEASE, I am urging parents who are raising pre-teens and teenagers to look for the red flags, and keep staying tuned in to them. Many parents think that just because their kids are older and in their adolescent years, they can be hands-off. While we're loosening the reigns for our teens to be independent, we also have to be hyper cautious and hyper sensitive to what they're going through, navigating these extremely high pressured years of their life.

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