Lexington High School

Reducing Stress and Developing Resiliency


Parental Behavior

Through their attitudes and behavior, parents can put unhealthy stress on their children -- and not necessarily be aware that they are doing so. Through their expectations ("If you just work hard enough, you can get into -- name the prestige school"), attitudes ("In this economy, you have to get into -- name the prestige school -- if you expect to get a good well-paying job when you graduate from college") and opinions ("Wow, I heard that (name of relative, neighbor) got into (prestige school) -- very impressive!"), parents can send their children messages about what they need to do to be happy and successful in life. And thus the kids stress out trying to satisfy their parents. Perhaps the messages from the parents should be "What do you think you would enjoy learning about and perhaps pursuing as a career?" "When the time comes, we should check out a range of different types of colleges or universities to see what would be the best fit for you, where you would be happiest, where you would really enjoy learning" " I don't really care where (neighbor, relative etc) is going to college -- and neither should you; I am most concerned about finding the school that is the best fit for you -- and you should feel the same way" " Take care of yourself -- your emotional and physical well-being is much more important than your GPA or the number of AP courses you take".