Monday, October 13, 2008

What Would You Do?

This is one of the most asked questions I get. I was asked this question live on the radio during my interview last month. It is also one of the hardest for me to answer and I want to know what you would do and what you think.
Question: What do you do or say to a child, especially a daughter who is over weight? You don't want to hurt her feelings or cause a possible eating disorder.

I will add what I think in a later post I first want your opinions.
Thank you!


Danyelle Ferguson said...

I think it depends on the child. I know several children with mental disabilities who can't control their eating. They gorge on anything they can get their hands on. In this case, it's very difficult for the parents to control the food in their homes. They have a difficult time communicating to the child with the disorder and trying to keep that child's weight in control, while still helping the other children in their home have positive body images. I can only imagine this is a difficult balancing act for these parents.

On the other hand, if the child is healthy, and generally makes healthy choices (all kids & teens love pizza and other occasional splurges), and if this was my daughter, I would tell her that sometimes during childhood and early teen years, we may be a little chubbier than we like. I believe that part of this is because our body stores more body fats as we're developing and growing. I would remind her she's beautiful and loved by many people, including her parents & Heavenly Father. If later, during her late teens, she continues to have problems with her weight, then we could go to see a nutritional or doctor for suggestions. But the most important thing to remember is not what your pant size is - but how big your heart is. Others will overlook your physical appearance, when your eyes glow with love and friendship for others.

Haley Hatch Freeman said...

Thank you for your comment Danyelle. Thanks for reminding us of all the different situations a family could be facing that changes the whole dynamic.
I agree that most of us growing up had a "chubby phase" If that is all that is happening with a child I absolutely say do not address it and make it a non-issue.
I'll comment more later on what I think you can do if a problem is more than just a child eating out of boredom or enjoyment.