Back-Stage or On-Stage
Our letter in this chapter regards a child with low self-esteem and who compensates for his insecurity by seeking to be the center of attention. Th is child demonstrates some of the typical behaviors and feelings that arise when a child chooses this mode of adaptationshowing off or bragging. People throughout their life need to feel validated and that they matter. Children usually receive validation of their essential worth from their parents. When this is insuffi cient for the child for some reason, or it is not forthcoming from the family, a youngster seeks it elsewhere, usually from peers. Some youngsters achieve this through appropriate sociability, others through achievements, still others from the development and sharing of common interests. However, some children resort to less adaptive approaches to the problem and, in seeking affi rmation from others, actually push them away (Heaney & Israel, 2002; Greenspan, 1993).