Friday, August 1, 2014
YOLO COUNTY NEWS
99 CENTS

Life in the Slow Lane: Popularity at a not-so-popular price

ValerieFrankelW

By
From page A3 | July 09, 2014 |

What makes someone popular? As I witness kids at home and work go through the ups and downs of friendships, I wonder what are the ingredients to creating popularity. Because I know for sure we aren’t born with it.

I remember way back in fifth grade, when I wanted desperately for the “popular” girl to like me. On some days she did, and some days she didn’t. It was a crazy, emotional roller coaster. My wise mom would tell me that this girl wasn’t a true friend, but I didn’t listen — I was busy convincing myself that this girl was supposed to like me. I learned the hard way, through many tears, what my mom meant. I focused on my truest friends, who are still my friends, nearly 40 years later.

Oh, and don’t forget the jeans — yes, many girls are convinced that they will be liked more if they have the “right” jeans. I truly thought that my mom was sabotaging my social life based on not wanting to spend more than $16 on the special Dittos brand jeans that would win any friend over. Fast-forward to present day, and many parents are having the same struggle with their kids (and the price of jeans has increased considerably).

I know that I sound like my grandpa with what I’m about to say — kids these days are growing up too fast. The popularity race plus the technology age equals a younger generation racing along the fast track. There’s research being done on these popular teens who are growing up faster. They are actually missing out on what they are truly supposed to be doing; simply being a teenager, not trying to reach adulthood too quickly. Popularity can’t come at any cost, especially missing out on developmental milestones.

What can our kids do to avoid this fast track to popularity and beyond? That’s where we come in as parents, to help them develop a sense of themselves and who they are in the world. Figuring out how they feel around certain friends is helpful, as they learn who they can be themselves with and who they can’t.

They need to figure out some of this without us, even if it means feeling crushed when someone doesn’t like them. Yes, it’s OK to let our kids get hurt, as the recovery and learning from the experience is part of the process.

As a parent, I can’t convince my daughter what is more important — to fit in or stay true to herself. She is going to have to buy a ticket on the same roller-coaster ride I was on in fifth grade, and hopefully pick the people who are friends for who she is on the inside, not for what jeans she’s wearing.

— Valerie Frankel, MFT, is a licensed therapist in private practice who lives in Davis with her family. Her column publishes monthly. Reach her at vfrankel@gmail.com

Comments

comments

Valerie Frankel

.

News

What’s the buzz?

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A1

 
Davis Reads book project focuses on veterans

By Anne Ternus-Bellamy | From Page: A1

Carbahal and Company celebrates 30 years

By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A1

 
UCD chancellor is coming up for 5-year review

By Tanya Perez | From Page: A1 | Gallery

Need a new best friend?

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A3 | Gallery

 
Businesses can learn about PR strategies

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A3

Enjoy films, beer at benefit Friday night

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A3

 
Target hosts National Night Out celebration

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A3

10 essential herbs are focus of Davisite’s talk

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A3

 
Parents can learn all about IEPs

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A3

Bee beard photo wins award

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A3 | Gallery

 
 
City of Davis recruits for its advisory commissions

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A9

Seniors share homes for savings, companionship

By The Associated Press | From Page: A9 | Gallery

 
Farmers Market shoppers can pick up free reusable produce bags

By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A10 | Gallery

.

Forum

Railroads, listen up and respond

By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A8

 
Tom Meyer cartoon

By Debbie Davis | From Page: A8

 
Treat children as refugees

By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A8

Protect and expand Medicare

By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A8

 
It’s insurance against extremes

By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A8

Political cartoon was offensive

By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A8

 
Let’s gas up for TAPS

By Letters to the Editor | From Page: A8

.

Sports

Stuart named to outstanding placekicker watch list

By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: B1 | Gallery

 
Going, going, gone: A’s trade Cespedes

By The Associated Press | From Page: B1 | Gallery

Swimley recalls a budding star in Giants’ Susac

By Bruce Gallaudet | From Page: B1

 
Nick Watney leads Barracuda Championship

By The Associated Press | From Page: B1

Safety Bethea finding a groove with new 49ers team

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2 | Gallery

 
UCD women’s golf tees up tough schedule

By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: B8

.

Features

.

Arts

‘Guardians of the Galaxy’: Droll sci-fi hijinks

By Derrick Bang | From Page: A11 | Gallery

 
Barnyard Theatre adds ‘Pinky’ performance after sold-out opening night.

By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A11 | Gallery

WOH to hold auditions for ‘Zuccotti Park’

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A11

 
‘Tunes on Tuesdays’ come to Freeman Park

By Enterprise staff | From Page: A12 | Gallery

.

Business

Grand Cherokee: A grand, and long, ride

By Ann M. Job | From Page: B3 | Gallery

 
.

Obituaries

Don Fife

By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A5

 
Nancy Jane Fife

By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A5

Clara Meyerhoff

By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A5

 
Patricia Eileen Hershberger

By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A5

John Vernon McLane Wayland

By Special to The Enterprise | From Page: A5

 
.

Comics

Comics: Friday, August 1, 2014

By Creator | From Page: A6