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My 10 year old thinks she knows everything and therefore should be good at everything. When she finds that she is not perfect the first time she will give up and gets really upset.  She ignores all my attempts to get her to keep practicing. How can I help her?


Posted anonymously, 20th February 2014


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  • I would stick with something with her and show her that persistence does pay off eventually.


  • Just love her babe, ten is so very young…. she will find something soon x


  • How did you go with your daughter?


  • there are some good comments here


  • My daughter was the same way. We’ve now got her involved in a team sport at a very beginner level and she is finding learning along with others of the same skill level is fun.


  • I was exactly the same as a child! My mum always let me quit, because I would nag her until she caved!. I think it’s important to learn that if you start something and commit to it- you stick it out. Finish the season or whatever it may be. It’s important to learn about commitment, something I unfortunately still struggle with…… because i never had to do it!


  • Hard, persevere, we learn by our mistakes. Our daughter would refuse to do something if she thought she couldn’t get it right the first time, for fear of embarrassment. Let her watch you do it a few times first, then let her try.


  • I think you need to encourage her to keep going & talk to her about seeing things through. Just because she is a high achiever doesn’t mean she should give up. Maybe even try a team sport like netball or basketball & insist that she sees out the season :)


  • She will find something she loves eventually, just support her and give her encouragement and all will work out fine


  • Its a learning curve, we have all been through it at some childhood stage. It just a matter of keeping it positive and they will out grow this behavior *we all thought teenagers were moody well its called the tween stage ;)
    Must say it has been better since my daughter (12yo) started highschool :D


  • I’m sorry I have no words of wisdom on this subject, but it’s something that I’m very interested in hearing about myself. How do we cultivate resilience and tenacity in our children? My littlest man would rather not try at all than make a mistake no matter how many times I tell him that we all have to make mistakes to learn and grow.


  • Gosh its a really tough thing to deal with when someone feels that they have to be perfect.
    One of my brothers was this way…he was so good at drawing where as I was totally hopeless.
    I remember one night as we sat a the dinner able with paper and crayons and he turned to me and said “Is this good?” ….I looked at his drawing and was amazed at his talent….I said “Wow…thats really good”…he looked at me like i was a total idiot and then yelled at me as he scrunched his drawing up and said “It is not…you are just saying that”…..He then draw another one that to me was no better or worse then the one he had thrown away but he was happy with it.
    Sometimes I think you just need to let perfectionists find their thing and let them go as its very hard to tame a paerfectionist.

    Good luck.


  • Two words: Girl Guides. It’s a thousand different things to do, with discipline, achievement and service to the community thrown in. It was the one activity that let me do a whole lot of things while remaining dedicated to one thing :)


  • It might be beneficial if you gave your daughter lots of experiences instead of putting her in term or team environments. We took our lot to ten pin bowling, rock-wall climbing, water-parks, sailing and canoeing ice-skating, putt-putt and built up their confidence in a family environment first. When she had her confidence we invited a friend or two and we have had birthday parties at these venues where they all enjoyed themselves.


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