Effects of Low Self-Esteem

According to research, teenagers with poor self-esteem are more prone to participate in several negative and even dangerous behaviors. Low self-esteem can cause your child to not protect himself or herself as effectively as they should. Teens with low self-esteem, for example, are more prone to engage in sexual activity and/or experiment with alcohol and drugs early in life. 

Low self-esteem can also lead to youth behaving badly in relationships. When teenagers are unhappy with themselves, they frequently mistreat those close to them, particularly family members. As a result, they are frequently mistreated, which can lead to a further drop in self-esteem. Healthy and affirming interactions in families might have the opposite effect. 

Consequences of Low Self-Esteem

Low self-esteem can have devastating consequences. It can:

  • cause worry, tension, loneliness, and a higher risk of depression 
  • cause problems with friendships and romantic relationships
  • seriously impair academic and job performance
  • raise one’s susceptibility to drug and alcohol misuse 

Worse yet, these negative effects reinforce the negative self-image and can lead to a downward spiral of decreasing self-esteem and increasingly unproductive or purposefully self-destructive conduct.