My daughter is a people pleaser


Query: My daughter takes a lot of time to open up. And even when she opens up, she is always trying to please people. Even in her friend’s group, she always agrees with what others say even if she doesn’t feel that way. How can I help her be her own person?

Response by Dr Rachna K Singh: It is understandable that as a parent you would want your daughter to grow up to become a person with her own mind, who can judge situations and make her own choices without any outside influence. However, children go through phases where they find themselves closer to their friends and peers rather than their parents. They also believe their friends to understand them more and hence trust their decisions and choices. In other cases, children feel pressured to accept and go with their friends’ choices in order to fit in.

While this is not uncommon, it is important to make sure your daughter is able to speak for herself, and this can only happen when you speak with her, not as a parent but as a friend.

Making her understand that she as an individual is unique, valued and loved and that her choices matter will make her more confident in going after what she wants, even if it is against her friends’ wishes.

People often tend to care about others’ happiness over their own, when they do not feel confident in themselves. While confidence comes with time, make sure you groom your daughter in ways that helps her shine and feel stronger. This can happen by helping her pursue hobbies and tasks she is passionate about. People often tend to be most confident when they enjoy what they are doing and are good at it.

While we understand that it is not easy to always understand your child especially when you feel they are not opening up to you, one should also keep in mind that children often need their own time and space to trust their parents. So make sure you are there for her when she needs you but are not over asserting yourself in her life.

Hope this helps. Please feel free to get in touch with me if you need more assistance.

Dr. Rachna Khanna Singh is HOD – Holistic Medicine, Artemis Hospital, Gurgaon, Relationship, Lifestyle & Stress Management Expert

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