Learning about The Beauty Myth and fat etc.

(56 Posts)
Sulis Sun 20-Jul-14 13:37:50

Hello smile I used to post here all the time - FlamingoBingo for anyone who remembers me!

I'm on a mission to truly, unconditionally love my body - initially motivated by having four daughters who I want not to internalise The Beauty Myth. So I have my books piled by my bed:

The Beauty Myth I'm half-way through.
Fat is a Feminist Issue
Susie Orbach on Eating

I'm reading fantastic blogs like Dances with Fat.

I'm finding inspiration from articles like this about allowing yourself to be photographed for your children and this about not refusing to wear a swimsuit to play with your kids on the beach.

FWIW I'm a size 12/14, 5'1". I lost a load of weight a couple of years ago but have put it all back on. I dance at least twice a week and am fairly fit and very healthy.

Anyone else want to talk about this? What are you doing to support your daughters' body image? What work on your own issues are you having to do? How's it working for you? Have you got any body-love inspiring resources to share?

TheSameBoat Sun 20-Jul-14 14:16:57

I am on the same mission OP! So thanks for the resources.

Can't say about DDs as I don't have any but I would say my friend who has 2 DDs does an incredible job with them. She encourages them to be sporty, comments on their strength and if she compliments their looks she does so equally with their personalities.

Sulis Sun 20-Jul-14 14:32:23

I'm not sure encouraging people to be sporty is helpful, either, though. I'm wondering how about how to undo 'encouragement' I experienced in childhood that did harm to my relationship with food and physical activity. I've also read Diet Recovery 2 by Matt Stone - all about the harm dieting does to our health. I have a book about children and food he's written that I need to read too: Food Ninjas. And another book called Kids, Carrots and Candy. There's a lot out there about the harm that having 'good' and 'bad' foods does to us. All these judgements!

MontyGlee Sun 20-Jul-14 15:56:14

I can't answer this from a DS perspective, but I'm interested in the general topic.

I find it very difficult to find the right balance between various factors.

Firstly is the shame that I think I'm supposed to feel about a certain amount of body fat. Within this are two factors 1. I'm not supposed to be fat and, 2, if I am, I'm supposed to be actively trying to do something about it. As someone observed very well on another thread, you'll get support if you're fat and trying really hard to do something about it, but god help you if you laugh too much. I want to try and ignore all this and concentrate on:

A lot of people aren't actually as bothered as I think they are and a bit of body-confidence actually goes a long way. Think Beth Ditto etc. BUT

I also know that food is becoming ever more addictive and that bad food is easier/cheaper than good food. Modern lifestyles are sedentary in nature and therefore I really ought to be careful about exercise and diet.

Getting it right is tough.

MontyGlee Sun 20-Jul-14 16:21:17

Not DS, DD! Acronyms confused

Sulis Sun 20-Jul-14 16:51:59

But fat doesn't equal ill-health. In fact, the opposite. It's been known for decades now that women, in particular, are healthier and live longer if they're a bit overweight. It's the fear of ill-health, dieting and self-hatred that causes ill-health, not the fat itself. Except in the case of morbid obesity...which isn't going to happen to someone who loves themselves unconditionally because it is an addiction, which is a mental illness, and, in general, happens to people who keep trying to diet rather than people who are happy and healthy and overweight.

The shame thing is a real issue, isn't it? It's so awful to read some of the things people write about overweight women - that awful unsisterly Liz Kelsey article made me so furious. Daily Hate link

MontyGlee Sun 20-Jul-14 17:06:45

Sorry, I didn't mean to suggest that a bit of fat was unhealthy; I think you make a good point. One can 'big' and healthy and fit at the same time. The slope into obesity is a slippery one full of tasty things though...

Oh lord, the link. I kid you not, they were sharing a packet of crisps. angry

Sulis Sun 20-Jul-14 17:09:33

I know! How dare fat people be happy and enjoy their lives! Fucking bitch! Wow! Didn't realise how angry I was with her!

littleSpud Sun 20-Jul-14 17:10:26

No idea but watching as I don't want my dds growing up hating themselves like I didsad

SevenZarkSeven Sun 20-Jul-14 17:34:08

hello flamingo how nice to see you! I have been on here for yonks in many guises so not sure which one you'd know but Hello!!!!

This is a very interesting subject. I am pretty comfortable in my own skin and always have been, I have been trying to work out why that is as I realise more and more as I get older how totally unusual this is. Even now when I am bigger I seem to be much more comfortable than others. It's a bit baffling.

On kids, I have 2 DDs and they are both in primary school, infants. So I don't know yet whether the things I do will lead to them having a decent body image or not.

Anyway. I:

Don't read magazines or buy papers so there are not unattainable images all over the place - on the TV we all get it obviously but it's usually children's channels which aren't so bad! I suspect this is good for all of us, me included. They have shown that looking at perfect images of women makes women feel crap I think? Also the whole "omg woman has slight blemish on armpit" crap surely just leads to paranoia

Wander around naked a lot grin but that's maybe not for everyone! I have a tubbyish standard 40 year old body and so I guess they see me being comfortable

I don't make comments about bits I don't like. DH and I are trying to lose weight at the moment so they know we weigh ourselves I have explained it's better not to be overweight for health reasons and have pointed out that we both have wobbly tummys which is fat and it'd mean we are healthier if we are slimmer

I don't dress them up like dollys and try to avoid focusing on their looks (although I do tell them they are beautiful pretty etc as you don't want to avoid it completely for many reasons and anyway it's pretty impossible to stop it slipping out ingrained as it is as a standard comment to girls, I find myself saying it more than I'd like)

DH has quite unhealthy relationship with food "treats" "being good" etc all the diet tropes. I have told him to pack it in as much as he can as it is not good for the girls. We tell them about nutrition and balance and savoury before sweet and such and they seem to have a pretty good idea so far they eat when they're hungry and stop when they're full and have been known to choose cheese or fruit over sweets from time to time so that all seems good

I kind of feel like we're doing OK but only time will tell I think and peer pressure social pressure is so strong what you do at home can only go so far.

I will try and work out why I am so comfy with myself I talk to people / friends and know I am unusual and it'd be interesting to know why maybe pass it on smile

ElephantsNeverForgive Sun 20-Jul-14 17:35:52

Good links.
I'm a blobby size 16 and I have no hang ups about wearing a bathing costume, because I love swimming far too much to give a fuck.

I do avoid photo's, but I always have. I just look silly in them. Nothing to do with age, I've always looked daft in photos.

Fortunately my wedding ones are OK, but most are awful. DD1 has to be caught in an unguarded moment too, while DD2 just poses perfectly.

SevenZarkSeven Sun 20-Jul-14 17:38:40

God that's a whopper post!


Although we are trying to lose weight we are not on a "diet" just trying to eat a bit less and watch the sugary drinks and be a bit more active it is working well but we don't talk about it IYSWIM the kids aren't hearing shall I have a yoghurt or one bit of choc I have 3 points left to spend where's the slimfast nono I'm low-carbing this week etc all the obsessive stuff which is very unhealthy but women and girls are pushed into doing almost as a standard way of life and universal ongoing thing and permanent topic of conversation.

Not trying to sound smug here as I'm not, just trying to answer teh question in the op honestly smile and I am 5'3 and nearly 11 stone so nothing to write home about there! smile

PetiteRaleuse Sun 20-Jul-14 17:38:48

Watching this as interesting. Hi FB ages since have seen you around.

ElephantsNeverForgive Sun 20-Jul-14 17:39:46

As for the DDs, DD1(16) takes peer pressure with a pinch of salt. She conforms with societies norms as far as it suits her.

DD2(13) I worry about more, but it's hard to tell if she does fashion etc. to conform or because she enjoys and is good at it.

Bluebelljumpsoverthemoon Sun 20-Jul-14 18:35:33

Fat is unattractive whether it's excessively padding out a man or woman. No child benefits from being overfed and under exercised no matter how many meaningless platitudes you instill in them to try and convince them that fat is good. It's not and I feel so sad for waddling children/teenagers, they're too young to be so repulsive and diseased.

I think if girls are raised to be strong, fit and healthy they're at an advantage. I encourage lots of physical activity and when she's old enough I'll be encouraging her to participate in as much team sport as possible as it toughens girls up, improves their social skills and gives them confidence and an identity that isn't wrapped up in a sexualised appearance.

I will never tolerate the lifestyle that results in fatness along with a lot of other things which are unacceptable. Children don't develop self esteem from their parents filling their head with lies,wishful thinking and delusions, once they realise that's not the reality they'll resent you and never trust you again. They gain esteem from their achievements, self respect and successful interaction with others.

SevenZarkSeven Sun 20-Jul-14 19:07:54


nice try grin

I particularly liked "repulsive and diseased"

I think if you want to get a rise you need to be a little more subtle grin

ballsballsballs Sun 20-Jul-14 19:11:44


tinkerbellvspredator Sun 20-Jul-14 19:32:48

I do a lot of the same as Seven. DD is 4 and sometimes she puts on a hair band or a necklace and says 'I look beautiful /pretty', I always reply you're always beautiful. First couple of times this caused an argument but she seems to accept it now! She also puts jewellery on me and says she's making me beautiful and I say the same about myself.

If she says I Mummy has a big Bum I say yes it's bigger than yours because I'm a grown up or 'isn't it lovely' that sort of thing.

Since she was a baby I've tried not to say pretty very much but say strong, brave etc.

Sulis Sun 20-Jul-14 19:53:10

Lucky I don't give a shit about your opinion, then Bluebell smile

Sulis Sun 20-Jul-14 19:56:39

I do the same about how I talk to my girls and am fairly self-confident as far as my body image goes. But I know I've internalised a lot of harmful ideas and I want to shift them so their energy doesn't transmit to my children, if that makes sense. Ideas that I know in my consciousness are false but are deep-seated thanks to growing up in this culture. I know I can't shield my children from all that shit but I can at least minimise any influence from my own stuff.

SevenZarkSeven Sun 20-Jul-14 20:23:07

I do know exactly what you mean sulis and the problem of course is that we are often operating sort of half aware like the things we say just pop out thoughtlessly and we don't even notice we're doing it.

So I think I don't give cues around low self esteem BUT maybe I am and I can't notice it because it's me IYSWIM. Like often people say stuff and if you ask them about it, it's clear they don't even remember saying it and if you ask why they look confused as it's not something they thought they would say.

Don't know if that makes sense!

There is a complex interaction of things here including family socialisation peers media and of course personality of the child.

I suspect there is something else that I get self esteem from that if it were taken or lost I'd struggle. Work maybe. Most people have something though right? Just that looks are so transitory if you have them in the first place and the pressure is too much not to mention expense and encouragement to constantly obsess and find yourself lacking.

scallopsrgreat Sun 20-Jul-14 20:36:18

I don't have DDs but I was one. I never remember my mum on a diet and she never mentioned body shape/image/size/eating habits etc to me at all and only very little about 'feminine grooming' (mainly at my prompting) . I think that really helped my body image into my early twenties even into my thirties. As did doing sport. Although neither of my parents pushed me that way. Less talking about what you look like is more helpful perhaps?

But eventually the relentlessness of the messages did get through (and an abusive boyfriend) <sigh>. Although I feel better equipped to deal with it now. Also feminism helped me see the patterns and how society pushes you down certain routes. Really useful tool, even if it is still difficult to counteract.

scallopsrgreat Sun 20-Jul-14 20:37:58

Oh and hi Sulis. Used to love the FlamingoBingo nickname grin

Sulis Sun 20-Jul-14 20:51:32

FlamingoBingo I couldn't get back when I rejoined! I was gutted! grin

I dance twice a week. I'm good at it and I love it and I get asked to dance loads and I know it's not because I'm slim and young because I'm not grin. That gives me a lot of body confidence. But then I see some beautiful young girl getting asked to dance loads and it knocks my confidence...which is stupid because I know I get asked to dance because they know I can dance well whereas they're only getting asked for their looks as they're new and I know the reason I'd rather be asked to dance for! But the fact my confidence gets knocked shows me I have some deep-seated stuff sitting there.

I really want to get myself back into the habit of doing yoga regularly too. I want my girls to see me using and loving my body in positive, creative, joyful ways - I think that's a huge thing I can do for them and for myself.

Someone just added me to a closed women-only FB group for women learning to love their bodies again - that will be interesting too smile

turbonerd Sun 20-Jul-14 22:15:56

Find this interesting. Have two boys and one girl. The boys are talking about being fat vs having a six pack. I'm astonished as they are not teenagers yet.
I've always been little but with curves, though still had massive food issues when younger. Now I do work on being happy in my own skin, and mostly am. Do not buy magazines or watch much telly. I look around at other people and find most shapes and sizes are lovely, and use that to be positive about myself too.
My gran who's 86 has dieted her whole life. Never gave her any joy and my thought is that life is too short to hate oneself. It may sound a bit hippy, but various events in my life made that very clear. You get one go, brilliant luck actually. Enjoy.

whatdoesittake48 Sun 20-Jul-14 23:35:04

I worry about this too. But a funny thing happened the other day. My husband and I were in bed....I looked down and noticed mt wibbly tummy and just thought " if he doesnt like it he can go jump".
The fact is that it us me projecting my fears on to him. Thinkibg or assuming that he hates my body.
something just clicked. He was in bed with me so he must like my body so I should li k e it too.
and if he doesn't like it....too bad.

King1982 Mon 21-Jul-14 00:12:58

I think it's important to educate children in nutrition and benefits of exercise. How these relate to weight and how weight relates to ill health (both very underweight or overweight).
I think harder things to deal with are things that can not be changed. Be it baldness, ginger, deformity, amputation, etc. these are things I don't judge but as a society they mocked or avoided. Instilling confidence in these cases are harder and take more of a process.

Sulis Mon 21-Jul-14 08:29:01

King - yet evidence suggests heavily that the ill-health-fat connection isn't really all that big a deal. Self-hatred, shame, the fear of ill-health are what are really bad for you. Living joyfully is good for you. So going for a run and hating every minute then denying yourself a chocolate bar (and possibly gorging on it later) is actually worse for your health than genuinely joyfully eating that chocolate bar having not goneon a self-punishing run. I'm not suggesting tgat we all tell our kids to lie on the sofa eating chocolate all day, but someone who genuinely loves herself and values herself unconditionally doesn't need to hear what's good for her and what's not because she won't do things that are self-destructive like overeat. She will learn quickly that it feels better to dance and eat all sorts of food than to do nothing and only eat what we are told is 'bad' for us. In fact the very labelling of food as 'bad' gives it the power that makes it bad in the first place. It's used as self-harm then, rather than as authentic self-love, and is far more likely to lead to serious morbid obesity and ill-health. Our fears around lack of exercise, 'bad food', and fatness need to be picked apart and dissolved if we are ever to be free from the prison of this patriarchal prison of self-hatred.

highlandflingabout Mon 21-Jul-14 08:40:47

I realised a while ago that I had been dieting for 30 years, pretty amazing for a 40 year old!

I have gained and lost hundreds of pounds in this time, recently I have simply got tired of hating my body into submission, of believing that when I am a size 12 ,life will be perfect(I have been a size 12 and it wasn't) so I have stopped , simply gone cold turkey on the denial and self loathing.

The relief. I can eat whatever I want, and you know what I don't stuff myself ,food seems to be losing its power, and have lost weight ,I am interested to see what weight I end up at what is my natural weight, I actually don't know. At each weight I am me, I am entitled to feel good , dress in what I want to. I enjoy sport and am back to it, not as a calorie burning exercise, but because I enjoy it.

It has freed up so much of my mind, and my heart if feels fantastic

CoreyTrevorLahey Mon 21-Jul-14 09:07:09

I don't have any good advice to share, but am watching this with interest.

My DM's attitude to food and weight has had big effects on my life (I'm now 28). When I was little, DM would tell me how lovely I was, as I was 'only skin and bone.' She'd say how grotesque it was to be fat, which I internalised to the point that I called my 2 best pals 'fat and tubby' (unprovoked) when I was 4 and, understandably, they fell out with me.

As I got older, DM would tell me she was anorexic as a teenager, because her parents put so much pressure on her to be a high achiever. I have no idea why she needed to tell me this. A few years down the line, both me and my DSis begin starving ourselves and get very thin. DM is furious and asks me if I'm only doing it because she told me she was anorexic. I turn out to be a crap anorexic anyway and turn to bulimia instead but DSis gets very thin and ill.

Fast forward to now, both of us are better but, due to anxiety/depression, both of us have ended up on antidepressants over the past few years, and have, as is often the case with ADs, gained weight. Now, I don't give that much of a fuck - I'm heavier, but at least I'm not suicidal - but sometimes I do get angry, because I feel like I'm invisible and everyone must secretly have no respect for me. DSis is off ADs and is doing well. But every time she tries to fit into an old dress, she can't and she ends up in tears. She's worried the old feelings will come back.

I'm still on ADs, which is fine with me for now, but DM is desperate for me to come off them 'and the weight will just drop off.' I never see DM eat dinner. I don't remember her ever sitting down for dinner with us during my childhood.

I love my DM to bits - she has helped me through some awful times, and I feel guilty writing this, but I want to avoid any future DD I have going through all this, and I really need to learn how to do that.

itsbetterthanabox Mon 21-Jul-14 22:07:06

Bluebell it seems like you have misunderstood.
Not hating your body no matter what it looks like is not endorsing obesity. It is simply saying no one should hate themselves. It does not good disliking our bodies, all it does is make us unhappy not healthy.
You say fat is not attractive. That is entirely your opinion and you are stating it as fact. You do not know or control what other people think looks sexually attractive. There are a lot of very unhealthy thin people that eat loadsa junk food are they unattractive too? Or is that ok cos you can't tell?

King1982 Tue 22-Jul-14 20:16:59

Sulis - there is plenty of evidence linking waste size to illnesses that cause death. Why do you think that everyone hates exercise? That simple isn't the case, many people enjoy sports/exercise. Plus, not everyone likes eating chocolate or fast food.
Many people are happy to be overweight. That's great. I think that if it was as easy to stay thin as it was to put on weight, then the vast majority would choose to be thin.
Most people can control their. I think fear and knowledge are different things.
I think that overweight is considered to be less attractive, as is baldness in males.

SevenZarkSeven Tue 22-Jul-14 20:53:15

The waist size thing reminds me of something that is relevant given this is feminist topic.

It was a couple of years ago and a couple of papers & BBC maybe had a headline saying something along the lines of "women with larger waists at risk" and the articles were all about how women who had "pear" shape bodies were less likely to get cardiovascular issues etc and they mooted whether this was to do with a protective effect of more female hormones or fat stored away from heart in bum & thighs etc etc etc.

Anyway the whole thrust was that women without a "classic" female shape of small waist wider hips were at risk because of their body shape.

The first thing I thought was well that's a bit shit as you can't change where on your body you store fat when you have any!

Then the next thing I thought was, that as an apple shape, my mum once described me as having a "male distribution of fat". Which makes sense, apple women put on weight around their middles not their hips and arse which is what most men do.

So about these articles, I thought what they actually meant was that apple women and teh vast majority of men are at a disadvantage as they put weight around their middles not their arses.

And then I got really pissed off, because men weren't mentioned in any of the articles at all. It was all about women being this shape, that shape, right shape, wrong shape. In big capital letters. And all of the men? Not a mention.

So spotting the media bias and kind of making sure you note it can help. As it's invariably women. Like when they have a "OMG people are getting fat" story the accompanying picture / film clip almost always shows fat women / fat women's bottoms. I think things are getting a bit more even with that, they occasionally show a man with tummies eating chips now but for years and still most of the time now a story about the nation getting fatter will be accompanied by a picture of a woman.

Rant over smile

ChanelCristalle Tue 22-Jul-14 20:57:33

I've just told my 12 year old that her body is a temple and not to throw any more chocolate mini rolls in to it.

I disapprove of all the waxing and threading and bleaching that women subject themselves too but I am kiiiiiiinda torn wrt weight. I don't want to read any articles that might make me feel it was ok to put on weight.

But saying that, I don't have a problem with my body. It has always done the job.

SevenZarkSeven Tue 22-Jul-14 21:02:48

I think the aim isn't to say stop having articles about being healthy >>> start having articles saying go on be fat

I think it's to stop internalising the constant messages to women and girls that they are inadequate physically and as physical appearance is the most important thing about them they are inadequate full stop (increasingly boys and men which is no good either but still nowhere near the levels) and as feminists try and work towards a change in damaging social attitudes and media towards women. Stuff like how some mags have said they won't airbrush any more (did some say that? I think so) - that sort of thing is a good start.

museumum Tue 22-Jul-14 21:10:00

sulis - I'm interested in why you are wary about encouraging sport? I don't have any DDs (ds only) but dh and I are pretty passionate about sport for physical and mental health. We are both prone to overweight but I think we both have a good attitude to our bodies. I care a LOT more about feeling fit and powerful than about how I look in a swimsuit. I take my ds swimming and have done since he was 12 weeks and I was all post-partum and breast feeding shaped smile
For me, sport and exercise make me feel good about my body's capabilities and not care much about its aesthetics.

combust22 Tue 22-Jul-14 23:01:21

museum- I agree. I love feeling fit and healthy. It's the energy that being fit brings that I love. I am in my 50s, have exercised most of my adult life and do 6/7 hours of hard exercise a week. I am a size 10 and have never dieted, although I enjoy healthy food. I have no hang ups about my body. It serves me well, but needs the care in order for me to have it working well.
My DD is 14, she does 4 hours of gym at school and 13 hours of hard dancing classes out of school. She eats to hunger, like me prefers healthy food, and is a good weight- slim but very muscular.

For me it's not about body shape, it's about being able to easily run 5 miles, to jump around on the trampoline with my kids, to have races on the beach,, to climb trees, to easily lift heavy things, to run upstairs 2 at a time, not to be afraid to try new activities.

Part of that is keeping fit and yes slim, because if I carried a few extra stones around I would not be able to live the energy filled life that I love.

itsbetterthanabox Wed 23-Jul-14 00:22:49

Combust. But why would what you are saying mean that other women who are heavier than you should hate their bodies? This thread is about not disliking your body no matter what your shape. You like your lifestyle and that's great but that doesn't mean other people should hate their own. Low self esteem and body hatred doesn't make you healthy��

combust22 Wed 23-Jul-14 06:19:41

I don't suggest for one moment that any woman should hate their bodies.

I do however see the discomfort and health risks that obesity brings. I am not condoning obesity- it is the single biggest health risk to the Western world.
Yes women should accept themselves- my body is far from perfect, but not all of the negative issues surrounding obesity are media made.

I have several friends who are obese, and i don't see them as particularly happy. Some of this is media led, but others seem to be plain health issues. Varicose veins, chafing, unable to walk very far or climb stairs, breathlessness, as well as the myriad of health issues that obese people will encounter as they get older.

By all means love your curves, but surely obesity is a health issue?

Meglet Wed 23-Jul-14 06:46:49

You can go for a run and then eat chocolate you know. I do. That's the whole idea, a balanced lifestyle.

museumum Wed 23-Jul-14 09:39:28

It is my experience that using your body in the way it evolved to be used leads to less objectifying of it and judging it by aesthetics and therefore less body hatred.

Apart from the morbidly obese and very physically disabled there is usually some kind of activity or sport or exercise you can do to get your blood flowing and heart rate up. I don't think weight/size matters UNLESS it stops you moving around comfortably. The vast majority of women who hate their bodies are either a healthy weight or mildly overweight rather than a weight that limits their activity.

MeganChips Wed 23-Jul-14 10:27:04

This is something I do worry about for DD.

I live a reasonably active and healthy lifestyle but I am counting calories to lose some weight at the moment, as is DH. I gained 20lbs, nothing fits me, I feel tired and unfit and have a family propensity towards type 2 diabetes. I am now halfway to my goal but it will be a few more weeks of this then eating carefully to make sure I don't regain.

DD knows what I'm doing and I do try not to ever comment negatively on my body and say I'm trying to lose weight for health reasons but she always wants to know what calories are in things and if they're healthy. It makes me feel like I'm treading a dangerous path even though I never discuss these things with her. I occasionally discuss with DH.

I think I need to be more careful to hide it from her completely even though I have always been very specific that it's for health reasons, not looks.

I'm not too sure how to handle it. She's very slim and active and I want her to focus on being healthy and strong rather than anything more negative.

weatherall Wed 23-Jul-14 23:42:19

Welcome back, OP.

I recognise your old name.

I used to be here a lot too but was gone for ages.

Am back now, wanting to kickass again!

Re: body hating, I think we see women being hated through all sorts of avenues in society. It's so universal we don't even 'see' it most of the time. I think a lot of this manifests in self hate of the part of ourselves we can see ie our bodies. Does that make sense?

Re: my dd's body image I try to balance telling her she looks good/beautiful with praising her for other things like achievements/being nice/being strong etc.

She wears dresses but I don't treat her like a doll or dress her in clothes that would restrict her movement. I tell her clothes are for comfort and practicality not to 'look pretty'.

She has long hair but it's tied back simply most of the time. I have let her put nail varnish on but not made a big deal about it. She is too young to have a lot of chats about body image but I imagine I'll encourage her to be healthy and that that will make here look 'good'.

Darkesteyes Thu 24-Jul-14 01:09:43

King you advised the OP on this thread to lose 3 or 4 stone even though
a, you don't know how tall she is.
b. she had already explained the weight wasn't the first excuse he used.


DadWasHere Thu 24-Jul-14 03:31:36

Question, since I am not fully aware of UK sizing, from the Dances With Fat blog that Sulis linked, what would be others estimation of this womans size if she were 5 foot 1. I would say full size 18.


CaptChaos Thu 24-Jul-14 09:03:47

And, exactly what bearing does her dress size have on anything?

Do you normally ask women what size their clothing is? What is their reaction when you do?

King1982 Thu 24-Jul-14 13:07:43

Darkesteyes - what has that got to do with this thread? I dont feel a response from me or any other poster holds much weight when it comes to medical issues.
I feel someone size 18 could lose 3 stones healthily.
I bow down to your dieting advice though. I know you lost 10 stone

DadWasHere Thu 24-Jul-14 22:26:21

And, exactly what bearing does her dress size have on anything?

If I understand what people in the UK think her size is we can order things from ASOS. We dont live in the UK and online store size conversion tables seem to be as good as numbers drawn out of a hat.

CaptChaos Thu 24-Jul-14 22:45:38

They tend to have measurements along with their charts, it's really not that difficult.

Darkesteyes Thu 24-Jul-14 23:28:11

King the lies you told on your threads which I c and pd into the same linked thread above coupled with the "advice" you gave that poster didn't sit too well together.

YOU DO NOT know how tall she is, YOU CAN NOT see her.

Sorry but im calling MRA!!!

DadWasHere Fri 25-Jul-14 01:33:40

They tend to have measurements along with their charts, it's really not that difficult.

Your right, at least for ASOS, digging further I see they went quite a distance beyond what a lot of online resellers do for size guides.

Sulis well done on starting such a great thread. I am passionate about this subject too, not just because I have a DD (and 2 DS's) but also for myself and the intense suffering so many people go through because of poor body image - and that is very often regardless of the reality of their bodies. I have been working on my own body image for some time and it is a tough process... like some pp's grew up with a dieting mum and judgemental comments from other family members about my (and other people's) body. I am so interested in the whole subject of food, weight, body image and diets that I recently trained as an Eating Psychology Coach.

Highland - you say you have dieted for 30 of your 40 years as if it is rare, sadly it really isn't! It is amazing how eternally convinced we are about how effective diets really are ie. not at all! Congratualtions on finding freedom, what triggered it for you?

Seven - you are so lucky to have escaped the poor body image 'not enough' trap smile. What was your upbringing like with regards to food, bodies, exercise? I think that is often the key to attitudes later on, although sometimes, no matter how great the message is at home, we can succumb later as Scallops describes sad.

In terms of resources, for a start I would recommend

Beyond Chocolate blog)[[http://psychologyofeating.com/ Institute for the Psychology of Eating, lots so free videos and articles

LookPositive particularly aimed at teenage girls

Isabel Foxen Duke

and me - but my blog is early days yet! naturalbalancecoaching.com/blog/4584246681

Sorry - first two links got combined then Psychology of Eating

MorphineDreams Fri 25-Jul-14 14:20:20

This is really interesting.

I don't love my body, and I don't want to either otherwise I wouldn't be spurred on to lose weight and get fitter whilst I'm at it.

I do however want to be happy with how I look, like my face. Because I can't change that and I don't want surgery.

Huffington Post regularly has some great articles on health and body image too...daughters and body image

Morphine - there is a step between hating and loving your body, which is acceptance and respect. You need to be 'in' your body and working with it, rather than judging, criticising, depriving. It is pretty impossible to hate and punish a body into being something you love...yes, you may lose weight that way, but you won't suddenly, when you reach your target fitness/weight, love it.

however Mon 28-Jul-14 05:01:20

I always feel the 'everything in moderation' mantra to be a bit of a cop out, but in the case of food, it's what we try to live by. My 'moderation' is probably different to others' though.

At 45 I am fitter and healthier than I've ever been. Even though I've always been a healthy weight. It's just that getting older, I'm beginning to see what long periods of benign neglect can do. I have a MIL in her 60s riddled with osteoporosis, and a brother who is now diabetic (though he doesn't actually look that overweight. I also had a step-brother who died suddenly at the age of 49, the result of 30 years of just not caring much about his health or diet. He left behind a wife and 3 kids. My own grandmother was in awful health because she didn't eat properly - she was at the other end of the scale - skin and bone. She had a loooooong life. But was virtually bedridden for the last 15 years of it. And it's my personal view (based on nothing at all, really!) that you really need to get your shit together between the ages of about 40 and 55 and try to be as healthy as you can so you'll have a reasonably pleasant old age.
Healthspan vs Lifespan

That said, I didn't give that much of a shit when I was younger, but I hope some of what I'm doing rubs off.

As far as the feminism angle is concerned, I'm much more vocal about the unattainable images we're bombarded with - flawless skin, pert little arses etc, and I take every opportunity I can to remind my kids that they're not real.

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