I have shared before that my niece & nephew do not have the best mother. In fact, Mr. Potts and I call her MOTY - Mother Of The Year.
Something she said this past Saturday triggered a huge realization for me. While it wasn't entirely positive, it was eye opening.
MOTY, in front of my 5 year old niece, regularly talks about being fat & needing to lose weight. All the while sitting down to lunch and ordering a 12oz steak. Yes, for lunch!
My niece is a tiny thing. She'll be short and petite and beautiful. And hopefully well-adjusted, if I have any part in it.
She piped up after her mother commented on my weight loss and said that she needed to go on a diet - that she has to lose weight. My five year old niece said this & it broke my heart. What kind of influence are you on a child if they look at themselves at 5 years old and are dissatisfied?
I felt a kind of slow rage begin to burn inside me. I reassured her that she is perfect. Mr. Potts told her that she is beautiful & just right. Her mother didn't pipe up at all.
I've never once in front of her spoken about my quest to lose weight and become healthy. Five year olds, unless they actually are overweight & at risk for childhood obesity & diabetes should never be burdened with these thoughts. Encouraged to run & play outside? Definitely! Speaking to them about how unhappy you are & how you are fat & need to lose weight while turning around & ordering a steak & mashed potatoes for lunch? I don't think so.
My takeaway from this? Children, no matter how young, pick up on things you say & do. They watch what you do & listen to what you say.
My niece, she'll never hear anything like that from me. I only hope that I can be such a good influence as to counteract her MOTY's bad influence.
3 days ago