October 15, 2018

How Puberty Kills Girls’ Confidence

“The change can be baffling to many parents: Their young girls are masters of the universe, full of gutsy fire. But as puberty sets in, their confidence nosedives, and those same daughters can transform into unrecognizably timid, cautious, risk-averse versions of their former selves.

Over the course of writing our latest book, we spoke with hundreds of tween and teen girls, who detailed a striking number of things they don’t feel confident about: “making new friends,” “the way I dress,” “speaking in a group.” In our research, we worked with Ypulse, a polling firm that focuses on tweens and teens, to survey more than 1,300 girls between the ages of 8 and 18 and their parents. (The sample was broadly representative of the country’s teen population in terms of race and geographic distribution.) The data is more dramatic than we’d imagined: The girls surveyed were asked to rate their confidence on a scale of 0 to 10, and between the ages of 8 and 14, the average of girls’ responses fell from approximately 8.5 to 6—a drop-off of 30 percent.

Until the age of 12, there was virtually no difference in confidence between boys and girls. But, because of the drop-off girls experienced during puberty, by the age of 14 the average girl was far less confident than the average boy. Many boys, the survey suggested, do experience some hits to their confidence entering their teens, but nothing like what girls experience. (The Ypulse survey did not break down its findings at a granular enough level to discern if there was any correlation between kids’ race or income levels and their self-described confidence.)”

Read more

JJ Best Of The Web

“America’s economy, thanks to Trump’s deep cuts in taxes and regulations, is powering ahead.”

“Donald Trump has this one right. Democrats have become a party of political radicals.”

“As long as Israel wasn’t explicit about what it meant to be Israeli, it was possible to be entirely Druze and, organically and inseparably, entirely Israeli.”

“Neil Armstrong was a quiet, sensible, level-headed guy, which makes him perfect for flying a spacecraft but not a particularly enthralling movie protagonist.”

“The number of IPOs is declining, and that could mean that small investors are getting shut out of the most lucrative deals.”

“The solution is so simple it’s almost laughable: just make our clouds a little more reflective, so they reflect more of the sun’s light, and thus reduce our heat.”

“Do you send Venmo requests for less than $5?”

“When female novelists write about female characters, or domesticity, or children, they face subtle charges of self-absorption.”

“Forget the game room and formal dining. You need space for aging parents and Airbnb guests.”

“Salt, Fat, Acid, Heat’s Samin Nosrat wants you to get off your butt and cook something.”

“Reality Is just a bunch of hallucinations we collectively agree on.”

“Let’s bring back the Sabbath as a radical act against ‘total work.’”