We all know that you can't really help someone with their weight until they are ready to do something themselves. Have you mentioned Spark to her? She should know that there are resources out there for when she is ready, and letting her know about them is something that you can by talking about your own experience.
Could it be she makes a joke about her weight before anyone else does? She may be acknowledging her weight to others so they leave her alone about it. I did the same at my highest-I knew I was big, and I also would joke first about it so others wouldn't confront me with their "diet advice" or a comment that made me feel uncomfortable. If I noticed someone that did lose a lot of weight, I would ask them in private what they did to lose. Doing this is Not Always a self esteem or depression issue, it could be a defense to be not confronted about her size.
Edited by: SIMPLYME80 at: 12/27/2013 (15:30)
Highest weight-340+ Started Spark-255 lbs Mini goal-200 lbs Goal- around 160 lbs
current weight: 225.0
Fitness Minutes: (35,434)
6,532 12/27/13 11:03 A
By joking about it she's attempting to accept that this is who she is, forever. The subconscious mind cannot take a joke. If she ever wants to change and get healthy she needs to get mad and do something about it.
TRI_BABE....since SPARK is free and you can be as anonymous as you want...it might be nice to give her the website and let her decide for herself. There are a lot of good teams for the 20's age group, and reading some of threads might help her decide. One of my favorite teams has always been DONE BEING THE FAT GIRL, they have a lot of very active members...a good way to make friends fast.
Sheryl from New Jersey, USA... EST
Pounds lost: 5.0
Fitness Minutes: (10,967)
12/27/13 10:14 A
I do the same thing. For me personally I always make the first joke or comment to let people know that I am aware I'm big and in some weird way I'm giving them permission to acknowledge it too? Or if they do make a joke or comment the fact that I said it first makes it ok? I know its twisted but Im working on it.
"Genes load the gun and lifestyle pulls the trigger"
She brings it up. Someone said something about fast food, for example, not in relation to her, and she said, "Well my parents for let me eat McDonald's french fries when I was only 3 weeks old... and we can all see how well THAT turned out... ha-ha-ha..." or, "Wow, I can't finish all the food on my plate - that's a big shocker... ha-ha-ha..."
I could point her to Spark but I think it would go the way of the suggesting going to workout with me does. Also without being obvious, I don't want her to think I am singling out her weight issue.
Tri-Babe...who is bringing up the topic of weight and exercise. Does she or someone else? I find that, with so many people dealing with weight issues, it creeps it into the conversation. I will get to a point where I just joke about it to acknowledge I know I have to work on it and I try to steer the conversation to other areas. Or sometimes it's a way to tell the other person, you know you need to work on it, but you are stuck.
Maybe you can point her to SPARK and let her join some of the groups and challenges. Show her the tracking tools and videos. ....
I think an individual in her early 20s is old enough to decide for herself how she wishes to deal with her weight problem or any problem she may have. So, if it were my relative, I'd just be sure she knew I was there for her if she wanted to talk about it seriously but not be intrusive into her style of humor and conversation or try to influence her in any way.
She's young, but not that young. She's in her early 20s. When she was a teenager, she was average sized and in track/cheerleading so I don't think she was bullied.
I see nothing wrong with poking fun at yourself every once in a while but when it's several jokes over the evening on the same subject that is what bothers me. I would say the problem even more than exercise is similar to most people's, it's her diet. I typically only see her at holiday events, and many including myself don't eat the most healthfully on these days, but I am fairly certain she doesn't know how to eat healthfully at other times. As I'm not the most involved in her life as it is, I don't want to be too intrusive or pushy about it.
I think you can be overweight and joke about it without putting yourself down, too. "Yeah maybe I'm bigger than average but there's just more of me to love," or "I may be big but I'm gorgeous as I am" or whatever. I personally think she jokes about it because she feels insecure and maybe helpless about it - like it's due to her genetics and so oh well.
When I was sick and gaining weight, I didn't say those things or joke about it because I didn't feel them on the inside. Hearing myself tell others how fat I am because I can't stop eating "haha" or whatever, would have just made me feel a lot worse.
I agree with SHERYLDS and think that she may be being bullied and repeats some of the things she hears. You can tread lightly and ask how she feels, resort to her doctor and see if that would be a way to share your concern as there may be health reasons that she may be able to understand the seriousness of it. Just being concerned about her is a good thing. Take her to the gym with you so she can see other children/teenagers so she doesn't feel like the "Lone Ranger". I have seen a lot of veryattractive and well put together full figured people!
I think the more seriously sensitive you are regarding your weight, the more it shows that you feel defined by it. In my opinion being able to make light of it, shows you acknowledge it and, that it's a part of you, but that you know you are more than your weight. Not being able to talk about it, seems to indicate that it is so hateful to you that the subject is too painful to even bring up. I think attitude is everything. just saying..
to the OP....does your niece turn down your exercise offers because she isn't sure she can keep up with you....and have you looked for an activity more to her taste.?
Edited by: SHERYLDS at: 12/27/2013 (01:34)
Sheryl from New Jersey, USA... EST
Pounds lost: 5.0
Fitness Minutes: (67,053)
2,736 12/26/13 8:27 P
I really think that this depends on context, how often it happens and other aspects of the person's personality.
I am annoyingly self-confident and not actually very overweight anymore...so I don't think that if I make a joke about my weight that anybody would even think twice about it. This kind of thing can be cultural too.
There is a campaign from special k I think it's called shhhhh.... It's meant to address just that kind of self hate . I use to do it also but this campaign was so piercing I have been thinking before speaking.I would not scold her but use positives responses to her negatives- she may get the hint.
Fitness Minutes: (25,939)
1,694 12/26/13 8:20 P
I don't think it is necessarily a bad thing... Sometimes I do that too, for some reason it makes me feel better... it's hard to explain why :S I don't think I'm overweight anymore, but I believe I'm -at least- chubby... and saying it out loud or joking about it kinda makes me realize that it is not such a big deal...
I am sure she feels the pain of being overweight but sometimes making light of the issue is a way to deal with the stigma. Humor is a coping mechanism. But it also shows that she is confident enough to face her current issues and still be her own person. I would worry more about someone who is devastated when someone makes a comment about weight. A lot of people here get flustered even when someone pay them a compliment on their success with weight loss...as if the entire topic is TABOO.
I have a friend who is normal weight and a lifetime member of WW. She lost 50 lbs over 40 years ago. Her obsession is a little unnerving. Just yesterday she told me she is still angry about a casual comment her cousin made while watching her eating desserts at a family party, last year. "If I ate that I would instantly gain weight". She is still angry. Meanwhile, she always brings my weight into the conversation when she is with me, questions about how much I've lost, what I'm eating, exercise. She has even left diet fliers on my windshield. I don't get angry...I realize where it is coming from...but the way I deal with it and her...is to bring it up in a humorous way and beat her to the punchline. But that's me
I had a niece who did the same (not about weight). I just looked her in the eye and said "Don't ever do that again. You're a wonderful girl, and by doing that your just belittling yourself, and letting others know it's ok to do it to you, too". End of conversation, and she never did in front of me again.
Your niece knows she is overweight. The most you can do is just keep on inviting her to work out every once in a while. I wouldn't push it.
The best exercise in the world is to bend down and help someone up.
I have a niece who is overweight that puts herself down about it in a joking way. I don't think it's good to put oneself down even as a joke. I wouldn't want someone else to say that to me, so why say it to yourself?
I don't know if I should say something or just let it go? Maybe she really is joking about it? I don't know if that is her way of dealing with it - to laugh about it or try to make herself think it is funny, instead of crying pr being frustrated about it. I've asked her to come workout with me in the past but she seems reluctant to do so, so I don't want to push too hard on the subject either.
SparkPeople, SparkCoach, SparkPages, SparkPoints, SparkDiet, SparkAmerica, SparkRecipes, DailySpark, and other marks are trademarks of SparkPeople, Inc. All Rights Reserved.
SPARKPEOPLE is a registered trademark of SparkPeople, Inc. in the United States, European Union, Canada, and Australia. All rights reserved.