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Compliment From Daughter Still On Mind

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Old 11-15-2013, 02:50 PM   #1
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Default Compliment From Daughter Still On Mind

While home with my daughter Monday I was getting ready to go back to work. I always wear a larger shirt over another shirt. Years of being over weight with a huge spare tire has instilled that habit in me. Anyway, while standing in the kitchen I lifted my outer shirt and began tucking the other shirt into my pants.

My daughter walked into the kitchen just as I was doing this. No one ever sees my stomach, just doesn't happen. As my daughter walks in she stands there staring at me and says, "MOM, your THIN" she stressed this. If she had been a friend I probably would have said, you think so? Do I look alright? But, this was my 16 year old daughter. I just stood there with my shirt up and looked down at my stomach as i zipped my pants. I didn't know what to say, anyone else I would have taken it as a compliment. I wouldn't have believed it, but would have said thank you. I hate how I look and am not comfortable with my body. I didn't know how to handle it, I didn't say anything and put my shirt down.

My daughter made me very uncomfortable because I didn't want to tell her what I honestly thought, that I'm still trying to drop weight because I hate how I look, and I didn't want to stress being thin is the best thing to be. I didn't want to say thank you either and make her feel that being thin is a compliment. I don't want my daughter having issues about her body. I didn't say anything at all, but haven't forgotten her comment or what I should have done. Should I have just thanked her, brushed it off, should I have addressed what appeared to be her concerns over how thin I was, or should I have told her "being healthy is more important than being thin?

I have lived a life time with body issues, depression over how I look. I still see an extra 20 or 30 pounds that could come off and she sees me as thin, and from the sound of it too thin.
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Old 11-15-2013, 04:27 PM   #2
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My daughters are 8 and 10, and I worry every day about them "catching" my body/weight/food issues. I always stress health, health, health. If one of them were to comment on the shape of my body, I'd reply with something like, "I've been working really hard on being healthy. Did you see my big pile of green beans last night?" or "I'm so happy I'm able to run again and keep my body healthy." Whenever we talk about food or exercise in our family, it's relative to health. Calcium makes our bones strong. Vitamins help our body work. Exercise makes our heart strong.

Growing up, my mom was constantly dieting, always calling herself fat (she's 80 years old and still talking about losing weight). I swore to myself my daughters would never hear that in our house. But I do worry about the flip side -- I wouldn't call myself fat, but nor should I glorify being thin.

I don't think it would be wrong of you to ask her if she thinks you're too thin. Not the way you'd ask a girlfriend -- more like, "You say that like you think I'm too thin. Do you?" It would be a good opportunity to discuss healthy weights, and that there are healthy bodies at many weights.
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Old 11-15-2013, 04:43 PM   #3
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Thank you. I have raised my kids not to have the issues I had growing up, not to stress how they look, their weight, but to be healthy. However, its more of a do as I say not as I do. They see me not eat certain foods, weigh things, be happy or sad if the scale moves. My kids have known for years that I have been battling my weight. I mean I used to weigh over 220 lbs, there is no hiding I've lost the weight but I don't talk to them, or my husband about it.

I remember my mother always dieting and always trying. If she lost weight she rewarded herself and was happy. When she gained that weight back she was always depressed. My own mother never ever empathized our weight or how we ate, but I learned from watching her.
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Old 11-15-2013, 08:33 PM   #4
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When my kids have commented I just say that yes, I am working hard at being healthy and strong - I never mention skinny or thin.
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