Friday, July 16, 2010

Unbelievably angry!

First of all if I could do this
I would!

I was shocked and horrified when trying on some clothes in Target today.

There I was trying on my clothes (that are another size smaller) when I couldn't help but overhear the conversation a few changerooms along between a mother and her daughter.

The mother was trying to get the young girl to try on clothes that were obviously too small. My heart started to ache when I heard the young girl say to her mother that she needed a bigger size. Now there is nothing wrong with needing a bigger size but when you are told by the person who should love you the most that you will not be getting a bigger size and you will have to go without having dinner for a week so that you can lose that belly of yours, well that is just so heartbreaking. I cringe at the pshycological damage that she is doing to this young little thing.

I had already finished trying on my clothes and was all dressed by the time their conversation ended. I exited the change room and sat on the new comfy seats just outside the area (where the dads, husbands, boyfriends and kids sit patiently waiting for the women in their lives to finish whiilst watching whatever was playing on the new TV there) and I waited for the mother and daughter to come out.

I dont know why, but I had to get a glimpse of this woman. Maybe it was because I was trying to see if there was an actual reason for her speaking to her daughter the way she did, not that there ever could be.

Well finally they came out. I knew it was them as the woman was now speaking on her mobile to someone (so I recognised the voice). The little girl was probably aged between 8 and 10 and I shot her a little smile trying to tell her without words that you are beautiful no matter what.

I haven't stopped thinkng about that little girl all day.

Why is there so much pressure on people to look a certain way? I mean this little girl was not even overweight!! I feel like her mother must have had such a complex about weight that she was doing damage to her daughter without even realising it. It makes me mad, sad and confused!

Then there are shows like this horrendous example.

Does this look like the face of someone who is enjoying being made to look "beautiful" in the eyes of their mother and some unknown judges on a "I am the decider of who is the most beautiful child" power trip? Especially when this child is probably so beautiful just the way she is.

I make a promise here and now, for the young girl I saw today, for my daughter and for anyone else who has felt the pressure ofsociety to lose weight, that I will not let this become my daughter and I.

Here are some tips to help your children feel good about themselves whatever their size or shape that have been taken from here.
  • Try to avoid discussing your own concerns about weight in front of children.
  • Avoid making comments about anybody’s weight – your own, your child’s or other peoples.
  • If a child hears frequent discussions about diets or parental preoccupation with food or weight, those attitudes will be picked up by the child.
  • Avoid focusing on weight change as a measure of success – look at behaviours instead.


  1. *applause*

    I agree wholeheartedly with everything you have said there. I have been witness to a conversation like that a few years ago and I, too, waited for them to come out

    The daughter looked quite skinny to me... and the mother was bigger than I was!!!!

    Makes me sick... my dad used to always tell me I was fat... and looking the time *he* was fatter than a fat thing! It really hurt.... but at the time you don't see that.. you see... my parent says I am I am...


    Love my dad but AGH!


  2. for that poor child in the chair I feel so sorry for them.... you see all these little kids competing, no more than 4 or 5, heavy mascara and looking like a woman of the night :(

    My 5 year old daughter has some lip gloss and nail varnish which she decides to put on when it's A Special Occasion for her.... and enjoys it. However, I'd never force anything like that on her

    It's mad! :(


  3. Well done on not saying anything, I know how hard it would've been, I woulda wanted to rush right in there :hug: I would hate for my theoretical future daughter to have HALF the body/self esteem issues I had/have, I certainly hope I never cause them.


  4. Gail- big hugs to you. I dont think they realise the damaging effects it can have for life for children. I am so okay with kids having lip gloss and nail polish and even my little one has a blusher brush on its own (no blusher) that she sometimes puts on me, or the dogs or tries to eat it (LOL) but yeah forcingchildren into these pageants is madness!
    TFL- It took alot not say anything. This lady actually scared me. Thought she might tear strips out of me and my weight as well!

  5. I am that person. I would have said something to the mother.

    "Hey, did you know that children are developing anorexia and bulemia at younger and younger ages? I mean, far be it from me to judge your parenting skills, but I assume your comment about your daughter's weight was meant for all of us to hear. There's a big difference between teaching your child about nutrition and forcing them on a diet at such a young age."

    Then I'd offer to sit with them in a food court or whatever and chat -- have a little tete-a-tete and see if I could help them.

    If she blew me off or tore me a new one, at least I'dve told her that one person knows what she just told her child and that it was wrong. Karma will take care of the rest.

  6. I most likely would have called the mom out too. Kids grow is she forgetting that. We have lots of sizes that go on at our house so we know how changing goes. Sure hope she gets help before destruction hits her little body. 8 to 10 yrs is when lots of kids pack on pounds to start mature growth ugh that just makes me sad for her.

  7. Oh my gosh. How did you restrain yourself from smacking that woman upside the head?? Oh wait. There was a sweet child looking on.

    HCGpower is right on - that's an age when kids, especially girls, pack on the pounds as their bodies get ready for that last growth spurt into a mature adult body. Kids don't stay tiny, no matter how much we wish them to.

    I sincerely hope that somebody in that little girl's world has a serious heart to heart with her mom.

  8. Oh Ali. This post is brilliant. I am clapping and tearing up all at the same time. xx

  9. Ali I want to cry for that little girl - I guess because we can see the writing on the wall! Well done on holding yourself back and thank you for posting it here...maybe we can start a self-esteem army and stand up andsay something when we hear that sh*t going down!!

  10. Here, here! My heart is breaking for that little girl and the sad thing is that it happens every day. A few weeks ago I overheard a (size 6) woman complaining about how fat she was in front of her two tween daughters. It made me gag a little, ;)