"The best way to raise positive children in a negative world is to have positive parents who love them unconditionally and serve as excellent role models." - Zig Ziglar
This is a great quote but that guy has quite the name doesn't he?!
This quote reminded me of a conversation we had with an orthopaedic surgeon at Sick Kids Hospital. We were referred to him when I was pregnant and he was so incredibly positive about our situation. I don't even remember what he looked like but I will never forget our conversation.
He talked about a study he had done about people with limb differences and how it relates to their self-image. His findings showed that the most important thing is having a harmonious family life. He told us about a child who was missing a toe. Her parents argued a lot and went through a very volatile divorce. She ended up with horrible self-esteem and really struggled with the fact that she was missing a toe.
Then he talked about a boy who had no limbs. Both of his arms and legs were amputated. He came from a harmonious family in which his parents avoided arguing in front of him. He was given a lot of love and affection and as a result, had a very healthy self-image of himself.
Some people may find it hard to believe that a child with no arms or legs can have better self-esteem than a child missing a toe. But it makes perfect sense when you think about it.
Here is an excellent article about helping your child develop healthy self-esteem.