One time I met a little girl named Isabel, she had recently arrived to the United States from Latin America and she was having a hard time in school because she was different. She was the new girl, with an accent in a town that had very little Latinos and her English vocabulary was very limited. She cried a lot because she couldn't understand why the kids made fun of her in the U.S. but she wasn't mistreated or made fun of when she lived in her home country.
To help her through this situation I shared with her the following tips:
1. When you go to college, all the things that those girls said to you will mean nothing because you will have the world in your finger tips
2. If you take care of yourself and worry about yourself you will always be able to overcome challenges
3. When I was in school, girls would bully me all the time because I just wasn't cool enough and you know what happened to those girls? Those were the ones that got pregnant, didn't finish high school, didn't go to college and weren't ever able to accomplish the dreams they once had
4. Do you know what it means when someone picks on your flaw? it is a reflection on what they are subconscious about themselves. So don't listen to their words, you are stronger, beautiful and you will be able to achieve everything you want to achieve
Those words she took to heart and years later I was able to catch up with her and she told me that my words inspired her to be the woman she is now: recently received her master’s degree, is working hard in something she is passionate about and is doing things she always wanted to do and it is thanks to overcoming her self-esteem issues.
Does this story sound familiar to you? Did you have a mentor that helped you overcome your challenges and made you feel more confident inside and out? I did, and these words of advice listed above were actually shared with me when I was in 8th grade all the way through end of high school thanks to my god sister. This story is actually mine...but replace my name with any other Latina girl and it is probably something that has happened to them before. Even now, when I have low self-esteem days, I remind myself how much I have overcome and how my looks and anything else I am feeling down about doesn't mean I shouldn't lift my chin up and move on.
But not all girls are as lucky as I am and that is why it is important to start this conversation about self-esteem with young Latinas. Visit Vivemejor.com to access free tools to motivate and inspire a girl in your life.
Disclosure: This is a sponsored post by Dove and Latina Bloggers Collect; However, all opinions expressed here are mine.