Recovering The SelfA Journal of Hope and Healing


Self-esteem – Mom’s, Dad’s or My Own

by Trish Hubschman

What is self-esteem? According to Webster’s dictionary, it’s the confidence and satisfaction in one’s self. Where does it come from? Do we inherit it from our parents or is it created from our surroundings? What makes a good self-esteem? On the other hand, what makes a poor one? Can it be improved on? I’ve always been curious about these things. Well, now I finally have a chance to see what others think on the issue.

Patrice Wein says, “I believe a lot of things are inherited, but surroundings play a big part and may be even more important than genes. Self-esteem, self-love is a process that has to be worked on.”

“It depends on how you perceive yourself as a person,” says Petrina Stefano. “If people make comments, more often than not, they are offering advice. If they make fun of you, then feel sorry for them for being ‘handicapped in manners’, as a priest once advised me. A person once told me that my problem is that I ‘think too much’, which can be very true. The happiest people let things roll off their shoulders and they move on!”

Author Robert Sollars adds, “We grow up watching our parents and if their self-esteem is good, then by nature we will absorb it. Then we get out on our own and we don’t need the ‘the crutch’ of our parents propping us up with self-esteem we develop our own… hopefully. If you don’t develop that self-esteem and subsequently self-doubt, we’ll fail at life miserably… one area or all of them Someone with good self-esteem is confident, knowledgeable, helpful, caring, & knowing, without being arrogant or a know-it-all.”

Says Author Marlene Massot, “I don’t believe self-esteem is inherited. I think it comes from how we are treated and looked upon especially by those whom we value highly. A person or child who is treated with mutual respect and loving kindness will gain self-confidence naturally. I was always of the opinion if you didn’t like me you don’t have to hang around with me. I knew what I believed and was not influenced by what others thought. A good self-esteem comes from confidence in yourself and your beliefs. You know your own mind and are not swayed by other’s fluctuating opinions of you. Poor self-esteem comes when you try to be what someone else expects you to be. This is impossible to achieve and can never be successful because you are made uniquely and have your own characteristics which you choose to develop, whether positive or negative, by your thoughts, feelings and actions Positive reinforcement of good characteristics and a strong, loving support system from others who encourage you to be your own self can help you gain confidence and shape your beliefs into unwavering certainty… It is up to us how we view ourselves and no one else.”

“If you have good, nurturing parents, who love you and support you, and encourage you, working to build you up, you’ll have a good self-esteem,” says Angela Montgomery. “If your parents are negative, constantly putting you down, making you feel worthless, then it’s not going to be a very good self-esteem. But also, even if you have the best parents, it is possible for your self-esteem to change later on in life, whether it’s your friends, someone you marry, etc. What makes a good self-esteem, is positive vibes and encouragement. If you fail, just keep encouraging and nurturing, and help the person find a way to succeed. A poor self-esteem is caused by degrading, abuse, negativity, and so on. I’ve had people in my life who aren’t healthy to be around, and it’s easier said than done, but it’s best for your health and to improve on your self-esteem, to get rid of the people who are unhealthy for you, and surround yourself with positive people so you can have a good support system.”

George Vanned says, “I feel in the right surroundings, we all can build it, but if friends or family hold you back it is harder to find it from my stand point I have always had it due to my great moms support.”

Scott Stoffel and author Christy Reed feel that self-esteem isn’t inherited. “Nor does it come from our environment or surroundings,” adds Christy. “It is a feeling we develop from an activity that we do very well. It is feeling good about yourself or respecting yourself.”

I’ve read all the responses. Now, here’s my take. Children get personality traits from both their parents. If the parents have a strong sense of themselves, theoretically, the basis is there for their children to have good self-esteem. But to have a strong one, it has to be worked at. If a person is insulted, teased too much or bullied; their self-esteem is going to be about zero. Positivity is important. A pat on the shoulder, at any age, can go a long way.

About the Author

Trish Hubschman has published three books with America Star Books: a short story collection of time travel and romance stories called Through Time and the first two books in the Tracy Gayle/Danny Tide series: The Fire and Unlucky Break. Trish attended college at Long Island University’s Southampton campus, earning a BA degree in English with an emphasis in writing. She lives on Long Island with her husband and two dogs. Her website is

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2 thoughts on “Self-esteem – Mom’s, Dad’s or My Own”

  1. Well said. There can never be enough said on this topic.

  2. Trish Hubschman says:

    I learned a lot about myself by doing this article. I hope it had the same effect on others. I’m thinking of continuing on the subject.

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