How do parents tell their kids that they're getting fat?
To begin with, is it even right to say, “Anak, tumataba ka?”
International self-help author and body positivity parenting expert Allie Kimmey was asked this question on Instagram, and the answer was a resounding “no.”
In a YouTube video that she posted as a lengthy response, the 30-year-old mom of two began, “It is inappropriate, in my opinion, to tell your children they are getting chubby and they need to lose weight.
“Why? Well, because they are told at every angle—from TV shows, commercials, magazines, every marketing brands—anywhere, everywhere they go, they are being told that the only way to be happy and to fit in is to be fit.”
With our kids already bombarded 24/7 with society and media’s standards for beauty, they should at least be spared from further brainwashing in their very own homes.
For Allie, the last thing your daughter or son would want to hear would be you telling them that they are too big or too skinny to be considered healthy or beautiful.
She pointed out, “Your kid is dealing with that every day, and they don’t even know how to internalize it because they are not smart enough yet to understand what’s happening.
“So, they’re already understanding in their mind that they shouldn’t be the size that they are, and the last thing they need is their mom or dad at home solidifying those insecurities for them.”
But these weight issues should still be something to discuss between parents and children.
Allie intoned that “a sudden weight gain or weight loss can be an indication of something else going on in your kid’s life that you might want to focus your attention to.”
As parents, we shouldn’t just “look at the surface” of these issues.
She continued, “Health is a holistic matter. It’s mental, it’s physical, and it’s spiritual. And we have to touch on all of those things, not just the physical.
“Let’s focus off the physical.
“If there’s behaviors that are making them choose and run to food to deal with certain issues, then you need to get to the bottom of that.
“But it’s not by telling your kids they’re chubby.
“It’s asking, ‘What hurts?’ ‘What’s wrong?’
“And by being involved in your kid’s life, and not being judgmental, and not being that parent that’s like, always measuring them or paying attention to what size they are, making them weigh themselves.
“That’s not a safe place for a child at home.”
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BUILD SELF-CONFIDENCE. Allie also took the time to break down the misconception of body positivity being synonymous to being overweight.
The self-help body positivity author emphasized, “Having a positive body image means that you are in control and in charge of your body and how you feel about your body.
“And you’re empowered by the things that make you different, and you’re encouraged by seeing diversity, and you’re able to not only love your body and having your body, but you are able to embrace and enjoy other people’s bodies as being unique and beautiful.
“And nowhere in there did I say that body positive image equals eat all the fast food and sit on your butt all day long!”
That said, helping your kids gain this self-confidence and self-acceptance means allowing them to experience the world and investing in their interests.
They could build a more positive outlook about themselves when parents would let them be more involved with arts, sciences, sports, and other social activites.
Allie remarked, “There are so many attributes and we need to take the focus off of the physical.
“Encourage their strengths and their interests and get them involved in those things. Kids need you to lead them, but leading them is not telling your kids that they’re chubby.
“Leading them is being an example and showing them the way in helping them find how they are, and really enhancing that, and allowing them to see the possibilities.”