Mothering and Life in General
Let’s Tell A 3-Year-Old She’s Too Skinny
As you may have noticed on my Facebook I have been, to put it mildly, a bit edgy. I have gone through a few personal annoyances that I am, quite frankly, tired of. Most of it involves DH’s ex and I seriously have no tolerance with this situation and have bitten my tongue for 6 years.
I have understood, or at least try to understand. From the beginning I have thought that I have no reason to judge her requests because, then, I was not a mother. Had I been, I might have the same issues as her. I did not let DH’s stories or feelings inflict on my neutral stance. I was there to listen, with the thought in the back of my mind, how long will it take for him to say the same things about me.
Now things have gone personal. Actually, since I became the person who ‘stole her baby’s father away’ and she stated this openly to her daughter as she was growing; things have become personal. Since the day K1 could talk and tell me stories that I can relate too, and have been through myself through my parents divorce, things have became personal.
But when she makes adult conversations about K2’s weight in front of K2, it’s not ok, and makes me flip my lid. I know there are several blog posts about the other side of the weight scale, and I think it’s time I will give to this sensitive issue.
K2 is three! She does not need to know that she looks too thin. She does not need to be looked down upon, I don’t need to be treated like we starve her and I don’t appreciate nor consider a person who has only stepped foot into my house twice, a person with legitimate concerns. It bothers me that K2 is not average on any scale because I know how her life will be. It inferiors me beyond no end, that a grown adult thinks this is socially acceptable behavior to note their concerns openly in front of the child in question. Then for this same person tell K1 that the reason for K2’s thinness is because she does not eat and is still nursing…. Well, you can only imagine how much energy it takes to bite my tongue.
I want to paint a picture, just like several other bloggers have, about the different side of thinness. Besides that everyone wants to be thin, people who are not thin, do not understand what it means to be naturally skinny. We get insulting, disrespecting comments too, but society makes it ok and the thin person should not say a word.
We can’t go to a person’s house without someone saying, “Hey I will make you a sandwich”. You can’t say, “No, thank-you I am not hungry”, you can’t order a salad or soup at a restaurant, because that is what you really want at dinner. And at large family dinners you are forced to eat until you are literally sick, and when you do get sick your family will say, “See, I told you she was anorexic!”
As you grow up you do end up with an eating disorder, because you are not normal. You tend to eat beyond your means, sometimes until you are again ill. You eat unhealthy foods because you know that is what get you pounds. You battle with numbers and scales. You leave, breath and literally eat – weight. You start counting calories and reading ingredients, and people in the grocery isle will give you a dirty look and roll their eyes. With all your troubles you still have yet to gain a pound.
You get comments from people in disgust, “It must be nice to be able to eat that Cinnamon Bun, I have dieted for a month and not a pound dropped”. When you begin dating and your lover wont have sex with you because he’s so afraid of “breaking you’d in two”. Yet, he wants a skinny person as his girlfriend! I don’t get it. By the time you meet someone who except you for you. You have already listed things you would surgically change about yourself, and you are too embarrassed about your nobly knees and the sharp edges where there should be curves, to be naked in the light.
A parent who have thin babies, are battled with Doctors and Failure to Thrive. Heaven forbid that genetics have anything to do with a low percentile baby. Nope, the child is not healthy, give her some oil and butter in everything they eat. Then 6 months later when that does not work we will blame the mother’s milk and switch to formula, then they will find out that, that did not work, then what? Oh, right. They poke and prod them with extraction of blood for testing, then say, “Maybe we are talking about a small person or average height and thin”. But they still scratch their chins, because it just really can’t be genetics. Maybe the mother is not feeding the child.
I am so tired of explaining our family tree, over and over and over:
“My mother’s, mother is a native who was small and had small babies. My mother and her two sister’s were small as well. When I say small I mean roughly 5’3″, there is an argument among the sister’s on who is taller. All of the sisters had small babies. One of the sister’s son, my first cousin, was put through tests because of his stunt in growth to find our mother’s carry a gene that stunts growth (either weight or height) in puberty. But it is also linked to small birth weight in babies. This is all they know about this gene, I guess since it’s so rare, it’s not worth the time to research. My father, who is 6’2″, was a very lean boy. He did not start gaining weight until the age of 30. Before this age, he would eat and eat and not gain a pound, and nothing was said to him. I was born small and long – I looked like a frog. I had a short torso and long limbs, I even had a long neck. As I grew, I never really gained, and was 98 pounds between the ages of 14 to 18, I was 5’4′ to 5’5″, depending on where I was measured. I have always been one, who ‘grew into my height’….”
It boggles my mind how people give themselves permission to speak about things they don’t even know. How they look all concerned and puzzled when they tell me my child is ‘skinny’, while she is being held by her skinny mother. It puzzles me on how people want others to fit into cookie cutter molds, if you don’t fit you’re not right and something needs to be done. Just some people are just meant to be the weight they are. If they are feed on demand from the beginning, they are accomplishing every milestone they are supposed to, the child is active in their world and the child is doing what they are supposed to be doing (driving the parents crazy at times), who cares if she is still under 30 pounds at 3-years-old?