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    CANNIE50   32,347
30,000-39,999 SparkPoints

am I a hypocrite? the votes are in

Thursday, February 09, 2012

No, I am not a hypocrite. And, actually, while I definitely appreciate the votes of confidence, I relied on my experience and my conscience to cast the deciding votes. If you read the blog I posted yesterday (and if you haven't, this probably doesn't make sense, actually) you know I went to a nursing home to visit a relative who is bedridden due to complications from morbid obesity and diabetes and a host of other ailments. She is 68. I am 52. 68 does not sound very old to me, certainly not "bedridden in a nursing home" old. She requested candy. I refused and told her why. I told her: "I brought you some things you asked for but I did not bring you candy. I do not bring candy to people with diabetes for the same reason I do not ask people to bring me booze, since I am recovering alcoholic. It makes no sense." She gave a little smirk but did not argue. I did bring her nuts, since those have protein and protein is, in my vast experience, a good antidote to sugar cravings, and nuts, of course, have actual nutritional value as opposed to candy (no matter what the Raisinettes bag says about "Antioxidants!") So, of course, more than a handful of nuts isn't a great idea, either, but I can't control her hand-to-mouth action - I have enough trouble controlling my own.

I got so much great feedback from yesterday's blog, as usual. I love blog comments - it is like getting little shots of wisdom and compassion (with the occasional smack upside the head). The comments, as always, are thought provoking. I think some of my concern about hypocrisy stemmed from my own requests, to my own children, especially in my pre-Spark, "fat and getting ever fatter" days, to "bring me something from the little store". We have a neighborhood market and my teenage son and his younger brother would walk there, sometimes, in the summer, and I would ask them to bring me candy, etc. What would I have done if one of my boys had summoned the courage to say to me "No, Mom, you are fat enough - I won't help you get any fatter." It would have stung, for sure. It would have caused me to argue, since I was in craving mode and that does not make for a happy-Cannie. But, it would have ultimately stopped me in my tracks, I think. I did, at some point, after having lost some weight and gained some perspective, apologize to my boys for asking them to bring me food I did not need, and had no business eating. I have also, due to the situation in our family with Millie, which they are all too aware of, given them specific instructions to yell at me if I am ever in a similar condition and ask them to help me get sicker. It seems so trivial on the surface - "hey, honey, please bring me some (fill in the blank with whatever fatty, sugary foods you think of). But, in reality, I was basically saying "hey, boys, whom I love dearly, and who depend on me and look at me as a role model - would you mind getting me some stuff so I can slowly, disgustingly, erode my health and cause myself a premature death?" Okay, now that I have typed those words, you know they are going to be on my conscience the next time I am tempted to have someone help me overeat or binge by bringing me unnecessary food(s) and, you bet I will be tempted. I have a long way to go to gain some distance from some of my disorderly eating ways, though I have also made real progress in the last year.

This issue reminds me of my basic philosophy for raising teenagers (I have a temporary respite from that job since my three older children are all official adults, and my little one is only 8 years old). Anyway, this is my motto: "I am not going to help you do something that I do not want you to do. It is true that I cannot stop you from doing what you are hell-bent on doing, but I will not make it easier." I have other areas in my life where I need to get more serious about applying this motto, but that is another blog on another day. Thank you, Sparklers, for helping me be stronger. And, the votes of confidence don't hurt, either. emoticon

Member Comments About This Blog Post:
THENEWMICHAEL 2/20/2012 7:58PM

    I read both blogs concerning Millie. It reminded me of what brought me to Spark in the first place. It's strange how I had forgotten...
My mother died from complications from diabetes. She refused to take care of herself and she ate herself to death. She was only 58. We buried her in a special order, over sized, reinforced coffin.
A week later my doctor told me that my blood sugar was dangerously high and I was likely to be diagnosed with diabetes in the near future.
I made a silent promise to my son that he would not have to special order a huge coffin for his father - and I joined Spark.
Thank you for blogging about your situation. I can only imagine how hard this situation has been for you. I hope that sharing it with us did help you get through it. Know that it helped others as well. It certainly helped me.
While I have plenty of motivation right now, I'm going to remember this on the days when my motivation starts to slip.
Thank you,

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CIRANDELLA 2/18/2012 10:46PM

    You are a woman of great integrity! No way can you call yourself a hypocrite. It's the antithesis of who you've proved yourself to be.

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GRACEISENUF 2/18/2012 1:06PM

    I used my children as "candy mules" for quite some time...bad, bad.

Nuts are a GREAT alternative...kuddos to you for being a caring friend.

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SLPCOWGAL72 2/17/2012 4:36PM

    I'm so glad I found your blogs! Thank you for sharing this; it has really given me pause to stop and think about a great deal in terms of my relationships with food and with loved ones. Thank you again for sharing your story and your insights!!!

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DEE0973 2/16/2012 10:24AM

    I love you and you are very wise, inspiring and encourage. I believe your blogs help open our eyes to our own demons that we need to bring out of the darkness and into the light so that we can tackle them with the help and support from dear friends like yourself. Cannie I appreciate you..

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JENNA54 2/15/2012 9:47PM

    You are one very wise woman. I learn so much from every blog you write. I love your motto, and have officially adopted it as my own - I'm sure you won't have a problem with that! I have been guilty in the past of doing things for the ones I love which are not good for them, just to keep the peace - but those days are long gone, and I am not the pushover I once was. Just the words I needed to read, they are so empowering, and clearly and concisely they say it all. I also like that other comment you have on your profile page about not putting anymore energy into helping people who can take care of themselves, than they are willing to put into themselves. I have a relative to whom this applies, and it will be great to have that comment up my sleeve instead of being stuck for words as I am usually!!!!

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FIT2BETHIN 2/13/2012 6:34PM

    Very insightful. Thanks for sharing!

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JITZUROE 2/12/2012 3:53PM

    I love that advice at the end. So perfectly applied to so man areas of my life! I am so guilty of asking my hubbie to bring me home junk. So bad! And something that I felt guilty for later.
Not cool.
If you would have denied your MIL anything to snack on, then I could perhaps only slightly see how this would be a reason for her to be a bit out off. I say only slightly because it is not like she doesnt already get enoughgood food where she is being cared for. You were thoughtful and creative enough to to try to satisfy her request in the best possible way. Totally different!!!

I appreciate your blogs because they give me insight into your world, and how you truly how to reach to to help others struggling, even when it's the mother in law..... : )))


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PUFFYKAT1 2/11/2012 11:43PM

    Enjoyed the blog, the content and the insight.

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MRSSCHENCK 2/11/2012 9:35AM

    I ALWAYS say no to my sister. She's always asking my parents for cigarette money. I don't get it. Are they trying to add to her chances of getting lung cancer?
It doesn't take a rocket scientist to get it. If she doesn't have the money to buy cigarettes...she won't be able to smoke them. emoticon
She used to get so mad at me. Oh well.

Good for us standing up to our family members. emoticon

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    Love your motto!

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AMYELIZABETH8 2/10/2012 6:24PM

    That was such a great idea to bring her some nuts! I'm glad you stuck to your guns! My vote would have been to support your brilliant decision! Thank you for the great insite. You really gave me things to think about in my own life. emoticon

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MISSB8604 2/10/2012 5:59PM

    You never cease to amaze me with your courage, eloquence and grace.

You are one of my heroes.

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MEWHENRYSMAMA 2/10/2012 12:08PM


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CKGO69 2/10/2012 11:04AM

    "I am not going to help you do something that I do not want you to do. It is true that I cannot stop you from doing what you are hell-bent on doing, but I will not make it easier."

It's amazing how sometimes the message you need to hear is magically put in front of you. My 18 year old son left home, angrily, the other night because I won't let him live with his girlfriend in our home. I'm heartbroken, of course, but I feel it's more important to stand firmly behind what I believe is right than it is to keep him at home at any cost. So, I'm going to borrow your statement the next time my son and I speak. Thank you for sharing.

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FEISTYOWL 2/10/2012 10:43AM

    Love it! You are a wise woman, as I've said before. Especially love that last paragraph. I do currently have a teen and I so agree with you - I can't stop her, but I refuse to make it easy!! :D And usually that is enough to make her think - thank goodness she still is capable of thinking (well, some days anyway!)

Good for you for sticking to your values - no point in being an enabler, and then you ARE setting a great example! Way to go!

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FLORIDASUN 2/10/2012 8:08AM

    LOVE, LOVE, LOVED this blog. We are such a wonderful and helpful community!

I had to laugh when I read the part about commenters slapping us up aside the head occasionally. Believe me.. recently I've had more than a slap...more like a kick in the keister that just would NOT stop kicking...but it's all good and now that I look back on that blog..maybe I actually deserved it at least one time...but not so much the continued visits full of nasty.

Anyhow I'm SO proud of you for looking out for dear Millie. It saddens me greatly to see how the big foodies have found out the secret to creating the vicious circle of health care...which I actually term death care easier.

They tempt us with faux food full of nasty chemicals and additives that our poor bodies can't possibly figure out how to metabolize so it just stores it in the vault called 'fat' to try and figure out another day. They capitalize on our time stressed lifestyles so they can pile suspicious glop into plastic trays covered with plastic film that leaches even MORE chemicals into our systems and then we nuke the living life out of crap that wasn't fit to eat in the first place and call it convenience food...awkkkkkg...we SO need to educate ourselves and just say NO to crap.

We also need to keep ourselves healthy enough that we don't have to rely on stressed out health providers who just want to fill us full of more chemicals called prescriptions. It's just a very sad vicious circle that seems to tear down our health rather than pump it up. That monumental task seems to be left entirely up to us..and I'm thankful to Spark for helping educate us about food and health benefits of eating correctly. I turn a blind eye to all the crappy advertisements they paste all over the site..ummm speaking of hypocritical...but I know they use that revenue so we don't have to pay for membership so I understand the great American capitalism concept.

So what if it takes a little longer to scout out REAL food and cook it the dickens out of having more leisure time laying in a hospital bed cooling your heels..don't ya think? for your a mother who lost the biggest treasure in life...our beautiful son...all I can tell you is KNOW their friends..there is always a period when peer pressure will win out over parental teachings...if you can keep them with other good kids you will be soooo much further ahead of the game.

Easier said than done...but Josh was 22 an adult by American terms...but he was even more vulnerable as a young adult during that time...he hooked up with a BAD EVIL kid that he refused to introduce me too...because he knew I would sniff his evil heart out like a Rottweiler...and sadly our Josh was dead within 6 months...know your kid's friends and cut off contact with the bad one's at their knees..your kids can't always make the choice as to who is good or evil in their world...and remember evil is drawn to the light of good kids like a moth is to the flame...we need to be their protectors well into their late 20's or early 30's when they have more life experience and more mature brains....this is a crazy upside down's SO different than the one that we grew up in...hugs and much love! emoticon emoticon

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DAISY443 2/10/2012 6:03AM

    Carry on, you're doing well!

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MIZCATHI 2/10/2012 5:09AM

    Insightful revelations! I learned something here myself, thank you!

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KATHY024 2/10/2012 12:49AM

    Congratulations on not being the "enabler" to your relative. It takes a lot of courage to say no to someone. After all we as humans don't ever want to chance losing someone's love. Millie might have been miffed at you for awhile, but in the end I hope she sees that is is you who truly cares for her. Saying no, was a very loving act. emoticon

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CARRILU 2/9/2012 10:17PM

    Nuts. How brilliant! You are such a smarty. Good for you for defending health universally:)

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1CRAZYDOG 2/9/2012 8:57PM

    OMG . . . I printed that quote off ("I am not going to help you do something that I do not want you to do. It is true that I cannot stop you from doing what you are hell-bent on doing, but I will not make it easier.") I am taping that to my DD's mirror in the bathroom. That is it in a nutshell . . . the essence of how to parent a teen!!!

I have to say my DS is 19 and I sorta figured it out, but didn't apply it as I should with my 16 yr old DD who has a mind of her own and is VERY opinionated (that is actually good, though . . . she will NEVER be stepped on!)

Anyway, it sounds like you handled the situation with your aunt very well. You're right! It just does not make sense to take candy to someone w/diabetes! And again right that even though you gave her a healthier choice of nuts, you still can't control how much of it she eats. Yup .... that's life, isn't it!

You did good!!!

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DUXGRL1 2/9/2012 8:44PM

    Great motto!

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THE-MORE-GIRL 2/9/2012 8:27PM

    Some of us didn't vote. I know I didn't, because I disagree with you, and mostly on Spark, I try not to disagree with people. Still, I wanted you to know the vote wouldn't have been unanimous if everyone had voted.

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TAMPATINK67 2/9/2012 8:23PM

    Well played. emoticon

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STRIVERONE 2/9/2012 8:21PM

    Millie is lucky to have you in her corner. I hope her other visitors are as loving.

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