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BLOSSOMEWOLFE SparkPoints: (0)
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3/7/12 4:03 P

I went through a similar experience- what you describe is pretty much exactly what happened to me when I was a child. My mother had horrible eating and exercise habits, and they reflected very much on me. Now, I will say, though that may have contributed to my weight and general habits as a teenager, there is no way I can blame my weight or habits completely on her- after all, I was the one who chose to continue with those habits as an adult. But, it would have helped me tremendously in making the decision to change my habits if my mother had talked to me about it. I remember her telling me alot that I needed to eat healthier, but never bought the food. To exercise, but never showed me what to do or helped me to do it. I went through alot of the same ridicule and low self-image that your daughter is going through, and it was very painful.

Having said all that, the extremely important thing here is, you realize that what you do and eat are affecting your daughter. That is the biggest help you could provide- knowing that you are contributing to the problem, and acting to correct that. Talk to your daughter openly and honestly about her weight, and ask her what her goals are. Help her to make a plan to eat healthier and exercise more, and you may find that simply helping her to stick to her plan helps you in turn. Take her to the doctor, and get advice on what she can do at her age to safely keep from gaining more weight.

I have a friend with a 15 year old who is 5'6" and weighs 250 pounds. The mother herself is over 400. She knows very well that her daughter is overweight because of her habits, but even though she generally tells her to eat healthy and go outside and be active, she simply doesn't get involved with her enough to provide the proper encouragement. The best thing you could do for your daughter is to actively talk to her, and help her with what's going on. Don't beat yourself up about it- just work with her to change it. :) Good luck, dear. emoticon emoticon

CRACKERJACK2825 SparkPoints: (0)
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Posts: 262
3/7/12 3:22 P

You never lie. To anyone. for any reason. I know my ten year old daughter would MUCH rather I be honest with her about things as opposed to lying to her, especially since we raised her to believe that lying was wrong.

As for your daughter, start by commenting on how pretty her hair looks, or how a certain color flatters her skin tone. Compliment her on her talents. Everone has at least one thing they are dynamite at doing. Does she enjoy dancing? Turn on some music and start dancing with her. If she enjoys cooking, Pick a healthy recipe to try together. YOU CANNOT FORCE SOMEONE TO CHANGE. You can nudge them in the right direction, but you can't force them to do something they don't want to do.

Good luck, and if you would like to talk more, e-mail me. I'm always here for anybody that might need me.

ZACSMOM0124 SparkPoints: (5,497)
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Posts: 251
3/6/12 7:00 P

I know this is supposed to be a positive website but i am going to say it anyway. If you love someone you wouldn't lie to them. Just because you love your children doesnt mean you lie to them. I don't believe she is intentionally trying to hurt her daughter she is just stating that her daughter weighs too much and she feels it's her fault and feels bad about it. You can't force your children into sports it's a personal decision that her daughter has to make. If she doesn't want to get into sports then don't force her to. Go on walks together, maybe go to the park or exercise together so she feels like you want to help her feel better about herself.

BAZZO69 SparkPoints: (0)
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3/6/12 9:31 A

I had the same issues with my mom. I was always a little overweight and she was always tiny and never had to work at her figure. This made the situation a lot worse for me, and harder to deal with. She used to always tell me that I had to wear certain clothes because I was a bigger girl. I don't think she meant harm...honestly...but that's what came across. You just need to be postitive with her. For me, everything washed away when my mom would point out that I looked great on a particular day..."your hair looks great that way"...."wow! Your skin is fantastic today!". Don't offer advise regarding weight loss, and how to dress for her size...that is her decision. Unless she is so unhealthy that is really really detrimental to her health...if she is a bit overweight, let her make the decision to change. It's a touchy subject, and as a teenager with low confidence and hormones and emotions running rampid...suggestions of this nature are frustrating and hard to take at this stage in her life. Make her feel wonderful about herself and the rest will follow.

JWOOLMAN SparkPoints: (2,446)
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3/4/12 9:21 P

She's old enough that you can talk honestly with her about your mixed emotions and fears that you've pushed her into a bad situation. Obviously you're dealing with weight issues yourself, and she can see that. You mentioned elsewhere that she wasn't interested in "working out" with you and your husband - not surprising, it would be boring to a kid plus there's all the added tension that she knows you are trying to get her active. There are actually reasons to be active that have nothing to do with losing weight - to feel good, to be able to easily do something extra periodically like take a really long walk or hike or bicycle a long distance without being entirely out of condition for it. Her world will become increasingly sedentary as she enters adulthood, so as an adult she will need to learn easy ways to incorporate physical activity (such as the walk in place exercises in front of the tv or while reading I suggested earlier). She will also find that physical activity will make a huge difference in whether or not she gets menstrual cramps and whether they're just annoying or incapacitating. (In my case, I found that just literally 5 minutes of simple yoga stretching warmup a day made them vanish forever, I still do that warmup every day decades later, all done standing.) Your workout routine may not be the right thing for her. Gym classes were awful when I was a kid, and it had nothing to do with weight... they were just awful and pointless and useless for future adult life (apologies to the few people in the world who love such things and become gym teachers or want to). The fact that I was forced to do things that hurt and I shouldn't have been doing (joint and soft tissue problems, genetic, surfaced bigtime by mid to late grade school) didn't help. So you really do have to butt out and let her find her own way, but at the same time be very honest with her about your own struggles and the difficulty you're having figuring out how to help her not go the same way. You do not want all this to become a power struggle.

Kids can be very forgiving if you're just really honest with them and approach them with respect. They start thinking in adult patterns around the age of 10 (and girls are on the fast track compared with boys), although brain changes continue through late teens and early twenties. The brain is actually in use it or lose it mode in the teens and so it does make sense to encourage kids to try everything, academically as well as in other areas. But at 12, you really can talk with her about things, both the need for keeping the body active and good food, and she will appreciate it. Remember to listen as well as talk, though. You will have to try really hard to keep your own current "obsession" with weight loss from interfering with your image of your daughter and your interaction with her. She is not your clone. As others have said, a good family counselor could be very useful in helping you find ways to talk with each other.

Fitness Minutes: (20,400)
Posts: 2,704
3/4/12 12:39 P

Many schools can connect families with free counseling servings in the community. I recommend you set up a private meeting between yourself and the school guidance counselor, and ask what kind of supports are available so that you can build your parenting and communication skills. After some private sessions with a counselor you can bring your daughter into the meetings as well.

BFMONICA Posts: 1,624
3/1/12 12:52 P

Start with building your self esteem and everything else will follow. We need to start with ourselves. emoticon

ZORBS13 SparkPoints: (202,123)
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Posts: 15,874
3/1/12 5:27 A

If you really love her, you wouldn't tell her that she looks bad in certain clothes.

I believe a huge huge apology is where you should start, followed by individual and family counselling to find out why you want to hurt her so badly as well as doing stuff like force her into sports.

NPPMOM Posts: 601
2/29/12 6:31 P

I think we all say things to our children which when we look back realize we could have addressed what ever issue in a better way. So if you think that you are having an impact on your daughters self esteem then take this moment to start addressing the issue in a more positive way, you can't redo the past but you can change the future. If some of her clothes don't fit or just don't look right then maybe you could get some that do. After all none of us look good in clothes that don't fit properly regardless of our weight. And if she doesn't want to take up a sport maybe you can start doing some activities together like hiking on the weekends or just going out for walks. I would try to get her focused on being healthy and put less emphasis on her weight after all getting healthy is what we're all trying to do here, isn't it?

VEGASMOM2 SparkPoints: (0)
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Posts: 53
2/29/12 2:49 P

My 12 year old daughter has a really poor self esteem and I think it is all my fault. My heart is breaking right now and I just don't know what to do. She is overweight and weighs 140 pounds. She has come home crying from school that she is bigger than all the girls at her school and calls herself fat. I know this is all my fault. When she wears certain clothes I tell her to change because the clothes don't look good on her and I know that hurts her feelings. I know that my eating and exercise habits have hurt her but I just can't seem to make that change.

How do I turn her image of herself around? She is a beautiful girl and I love her so much. I am trying to encourage her to join sports but she said no. I don't know what to do. I'm so sad and scared.

Any advise would be appreciated.

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