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Old 10-25-2010, 07:57 PM   #1  
Vegging out
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Default He's so lucky he's cute...

My 3 1/2 year old son, that is. We were talking at dinnertime about the pet rats in his classroom. He told me that they now have a wheel in their cage that they run on. I explained that they run on it because they need exercise too so they don't get big and fat and lazy. He then proceeded to ask me if I exercise. I said yes (though I've been lax lately due to depression) and he said "Oh, so why are you big and fat?" Do kids really need to be so brutally honest? I wish I could even have been mad at him, because it really hurt my feelings, but I know he didn't mean to hurt me. (the smileys were at his request)
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Old 10-25-2010, 08:19 PM   #2  
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Honey... I know how bad that hurts. I've been there.

Once in a restaurant I was standing in line to pay the bill... and a little girl about 3 years old pointed at me and said "look how big mommy"... to my horror... the woman that was her mother was a girl I had went to school with all my life... she knew me before I was big... so that made it sting even worse. That happened about 10 years ago... and still to this day makes me cringe.

Those things are so detrimental to our psychology. You would think it would give you the fight to get up and get the weight of... but no... it slings you deeper and deeper into depression and just makes you eat more.

You are not alone... your son was stating the facts because that's what children do. He doesn't love you any less. You are his mommy, and he is learning from you. Teach him, that people come in all different shapes and sizes and that it's ok. Teach him, that no matter what your size, healthy eating and exercise are the most important... not what size you are.

Hugs to you my dear.... don't let it keep you down. You have lost almost 30 pounds ... that is AWESOME and such an accomplishment!
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Old 10-25-2010, 08:45 PM   #3  
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I have the opposite reaction most people do. I don't mind when little kids ask why I'm "so big." What bothers me is when I see parents punishing or even ignoring their children for noticing fatness. Kids mean it no differently than tall or short or freckled, and it would be wonderful if everyone saw it as neutrally. When children are punished, "shushed" or even ignored, they learn that fat is so bad it can't even be talked about. Fat doesn't "exist" in polite society and sometimes neither do fat people. I'd rather be teased and insulted than treated as if I don't exist. It hasn't happened in many years (I'm too loud to let it), but I've even had sales clerks wait on the person obviously behind me as if I wasn't even present (but it was also in the days when I wasn't as comfortably making eye contact with strangers).

Yes, I know "fat" is a health risk, but so are many things that we feel free to talk about without blame, anger, or shame, and I just wish fat were the same.

Last Saturday hubby and I went to our farmers market and stopped at our favorite vendor, an elderly Hmong couple. The woman is known in her community as a healer and herbalist, and she's often telling us which foods of hers can be used for healthful purposes. She could tell that hubby and I were diabetic without asking (probably our weight had something to do with it) and recommended bitter melon. Last week she was telling me of some of her produce in her broken English "you eat, you be less fat."

I wasn't at all embarassed or hurt. I know she didn't mean it meanly, and of course I'm fat. It would be silly to pretend that isn't a noticeable part of my physical appearance.

When I was working, I had a coworker/casual friend who said "you're not fat," when I was talkin about how hard it is to find affordable professional clothing when you're fat. I was nearly 400 pounds at the time, so the "you're not fat," struck me as so funny I started laughing so hard, I nearly peed my pants. I didn't mean to, but I hurt her feelings and she snapped "you know what I mean," and I did - "fat" is so bad that a nice person can't be fat, they must be something else. Frankly, I'm tired of the euphemisms, and I especially hate the term "fluffy."

I so wish the word and subject weren't so taboo that any "noticing" is often treated as a crime.

I've asked well-dressed plus-size women where they shopped, and even though I only ever ask women who appear to be my size or larger, I still have occasionally gotten embarassed and even dirty looks and comments for implying that we might be shopping in the same (plus-size) stores or for asking them (even indirectly) to admit they're plus-sized too.

I know I'm ranting off-topic, I just hate feeling like I have to pretend I'm not what I most obviously am.
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Old 10-26-2010, 06:34 AM   #4  
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Kaplods~ I completely understand what you are saying but I think most overweight people do not want attention brought to it by adults OR by children. I think I would prefer a parent to teach their children that words can hurt people and to not always say what they are thinking out loud in front of others. That is how I teach my children to be, I did not want them talking about anyone overweight, bald, missing a limb, warts on the face etc etc so that that person could hear and become hurt or embarrassed.
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Old 10-26-2010, 09:30 AM   #5  
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I know mine is not the mainstream point of view. I just think that one of the reasons obesity is so difficult to fight is because we all know we're really not supposed to be talking about it, anywhere, anytime, for any reason (with the rare exception of the weight loss meeting, to which far too many people are too ashamed to go). Doctors shouldn't bring it up. It shouldn't be discussed in polite company. Even sex isn't that taboo anymore.

It's unfortunate that there isn't more encouragement to talk about it, because I think more people would seek help if it didn't seem so shameful a subject.

Last edited by kaplods; 10-26-2010 at 09:44 AM.
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Old 10-26-2010, 03:17 PM   #6  
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I guess I am somewhere in the middle.

My problem with society is the fat is a VALUE judgment on the person. That fat people must be lazy, stupid, or otherwise unworthy of fair treatment. That fat is gross and a problem with the person on some sort of moral level. In a country where the majority of people are overweight, we sure seem to judge a lot.

With children, I agree that children should be taught what is polite to say and what is not. Human have a need to categorize but we have to teach that different shapes, sizes, colors, etc are not better or worse that their own category.

I saw two teenage girls this weekend TAKING PICTURES of a heavier, older woman with very large breasts and then going back to the camera to review the pictures and laugh (I made sure to catch their eye and shake my head at them disgustedly and they stopped, at least while I was there). Made me so angry.
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