I was in the grocery store the other day when I saw a mother and her little girl shopping together. The mother obviously recognized a woman she was passing, as they exchanged hugs and pleasantries.
I wasn’t paying much attention, until I over-heard the woman tell her friend, “Wait, you have to listen to this, it’s so cute.”
She bent down to her little girl, who was about six years old and as cute as a button, and asked, “Would you like some chocolate?”
“No,” the girl shrieked. She had obviously rehearsed this response many times, as her eyes widened and her hands spread out into the air dramatically. “Chocolate makes me fat!”
Both woman burst into laughter, and the woman gave her daughter an approved pat on the head like one would congratulate a dog for sitting on command.
And I left, feeling disgusted, realizing that sometimes it’s not even the media’s fault. Sometimes the downward spiral of I’m-not-skinny-enough-feelings can be planted even younger. They can even begin at home.
And it broke my heart.
I vowed to myself that should I ever have children, they won’t see me diet. See me pose in the mirror and ask if I’m fat. Or see me eat completely different meals than the rest of the family, just because I’m afraid of gaining an ounce.
The struggle to be super skinny for the sake of fitting an image isn’t important enough to me. And that struggle is not something I would want to pass onto my children.
I’ve personally gone through that struggle of trying to fit a perfect image of skinny before. It’s over, thank God, but the memory of all the hurt and pain is not.
Healthy is beautiful. But Skinny?
Skinny is nothing.
How do you feel about that? Do you think that comments made by parents, although meant to be harmless, could instill some dangerous thoughts about body image into their children?