My Child Thinks She’s Bad

Having negative opinions about oneself does happen to children at some point in their lives. Some negative thoughts among children include thinking that they are bad, stupid, dumb, etc. Unfortunately, children mean what they say because they are naturally honest about their feelings. So, every opinion they have about themselves always matches what they feel inside.

When a kid begins having negative thoughts about oneself, as a parent, you want to do everything in your power to stop it. However, the question is, what will make a child start thinking that she is wrong? Does it just happen, or something is triggering that negative thought? Well, to learn more about this topic, this is the article to read. It has all the information and the answers you need.

Is It Normal for a Child to Think That She Is Bad?

Having negative thoughts about oneself is not normal. It is a behavior that children develop in relation to what happens around them.  For instance, what adults say about a child will determine if that kid will develop positive or negative thoughts.

That is why adults need to be mindful of what they utter in the presence of children. If, as a parent, you want to discourage children from developing negative thoughts, you have to learn to speak positive statements, especially if you are addressing a child.

What Makes Your Child to Think That She Is Bad?

Your interaction with children must have made you understand that sometimes children misbehave, and their behavior can be so annoying. So, you begin to tell a child that she is inferior. Even if it is a slip of the tongue, that word will always carry some weight. 

In other words, every time a kid hears you tell her that she is terrible, that word sinks in her mind. And without knowing, it begins to affect the kid’s self-esteem. With time, the child begins to believe that she is indeed bad because she has heard you tell her repeatedly.

What to Say Instead of Telling the Child That She Is Bad

Words do hurt, and they make children develop negative thoughts about themselves. If a child makes a mistake, you should say instead of telling the kid that she is terrible.

First, remember that you are correcting a habit. So, when you use the word bad, ensure that it is pointing to the behavior you are addressing and not the kid. This way, the child will know when you say the word inferior, you are referring to the behavior and her.

In other words, if you learn to objectify a behavior, it gets rid of the good vs. bad cycle. It reduces the chances of adults referring to a child as bad. It, therefore, prevents a kid from developing negative thoughts about herself.

How to Stop a Child from Thinking That She Is Bad 

Preventing and stopping negative thoughts are two different things. By stopping, it means that the child has already developed a negative opinion about herself. So, you want to find the best way of discouraging her from continuing to think negative thoughts.  Here is what you can do to achieve this:

Help the kid to view things from a different angle or point of view. Help her develop new insights about herself. This strategy will help boost the self-esteem of that child and begin having confidence in herself once again. The kid will be able to cope with disappointments and bounce back into the world of positive thinking.

Sometimes children think they are unsatisfactory because they are not able to deal with a given situation. So, the best thing is to help them deal appropriately with their problems. Solve issues together to learn some problem-solving strategies to apply in the future whenever they face challenging situations.

Preventive Measures 

Preventing is where a child has not yet developed negative thoughts about themselves. So, you want her not to fall into this trap where she will begin to think less of herself.

There are two things you can do. First, teach the child to have positive thoughts about herself. In other words, let her learn the importance of self-value. Another thing is to ensure that there are no negative energies in the kid’s environment. Remember that everything that a child thinks is a result of what she hears.


The idea of children thinking that they are bad is common. They get this feeling from their surroundings. So, adults should ensure that the environment for children promotes positive thoughts. It will help kids not learn to develop positive thoughts about themselves and even those around them.