Working with girls, working with boys, it's pretty much
the same, right? Wrong. Although in college, you probably
did not take any classes called "Special Issues for
Girls, "or" Girls' Problems 101, "maybe there should be
classes like that. Using "one-gender-fits-all"
interventions can gloss over the special concerns that
many girls face.
These methods are taken from our books,
e-books and web site. Find us at http://www.youthchg.com
Here are some surprising facts about
girls that you may not know:
1– Girls actually are a bit more likely than boys to
face significant family problems, but are less likely
than boys to be noticed because girls tend to be less
overt and aggressive when distracted. Our communities
tend to notice slashed tires not slashed wrists.
For problems like sexual abuse and incest, girls may
endure quite a bit more than their "fair share."
2– Although girls may face more problems, the bulk
of help goes to boys. Girls are underrepresented in
nearly every service category, especially juvenile
justice where girls may be just 25% of the clients.
Boys get more intensive services, are served earlier, and
for longer duration
3– It is generally girls, not boys, who bear the
most consequences of a teen pregnancy. Teen moms are the
most likely to drop out of school, go on care, live
in poverty and never get off welfare, a huge legacy of
woes unique to females.
To work in a gender-profitable way with girls, you must
address girls' special issues using gender-specific
methods, not "uni-sex" interventions. The strategies below
are interventions created especially for girls and focus
on areas of special concern for young females:
*** Mamas, Do not Let Your Daughters Grow Up to Be Dropouts
Recap the financial facts cited in # 3 above, plus let your
girls know these additional "Frightening Facts for
Females: "No one earns less than a female drop-out, and
she earns considerably less, plus her salary is
expected to drop by about 1/2% annually, that's 5% per decade.
*** BONUS TIP: The income of female drop-outs is
plummeting. For example, female drop-outs earned an
average $ 17,000 in 1979 but just $ 16,300 in 1995 (all
adjusted 1995 dollars.) These facts are from our "The
More You Learn, The More You Earn "newsletter
( http://www.youthchg.com/orderfm.html ) which costs just
$ 2 and has lots more facts and tips, along with the source
of the data. We'll send that newsletter to you FREE with
any purchase or registration you make in 2000 if you
mention this e-zine when you first register or order.
*** Would You Recommend It to a Friend?
Ask girls to name all the solutions they would
recommend to a friend who was feeling sad, lonely and
unloved. List the answers on the board, or on paper,
then note that having a baby is not listed. For girls
who plan to have a baby to get love, you can ask them
why they would select a course of action for themselves
that they would not even recommend to a friend.
*** BONUS TIP: Ask girls this question: Babies
born in 1999 will cost $ 160,000- $ 237,000 to raise;
will your permission cover it? You can also assist
the girls to figure out how well minimum wage jobs,
dessert and food stamps will cover these costs. Our
"What Every Girl Needs to Know About the Real World"
book is the source of lots more of these strategies.
( http://www.youthchg.com/lessons.html )
*** Transform Miss Priss into Miss Piggy
Perfectionism can be a surprisingly key issue for
some girls. For example, links between perfectionism
and eating disorders have long been noted, so easing
a girl's perfectionism can have a relevant ripple
effect. If you work with Miss Priss, here is a
quick strategy to help move her a bit in the other
direction. Teach the girls the "3 Ps of Perfectionism",
the cycle of perfectionism. This may help them become
a bit more in control of the cycle. So a girl wants to
be perfect, then the first 'P', Perfectionism. Doing
everything perfect is hard, so she may put things
off, then the second 'P', Procrastination. Now
the tasks that have been postponed have piled
up and that is overwhelming, which can cause the third
'P,' Paralysis. The more you can assist your girls
to avoid the later stages of the cycle, the better
they may function.
*** BONUS TIP: Teach girls that everybody makes
mistooks and then you make one, then challenge your
girls to make some mistooks too. Teach the girls that
"everyone makes mistooks." That may ease some pressure.