To tell my Mum to shut up about calories/weight watching

(9 Posts)
liinyo Sun 20-Dec-15 06:11:28

5 years ago my DD started uni and almost immediately developed anorexia. Now five years, extensive therapy and a gap year later she is fully weight restored and hopefully will be in recovery forever . It was a wake up call for our family. I no longer obsess about my own weight and diet., I exercise for pleasure and fitness, not to balance out calorie intake. We chucked out our scales and just enjoy food and togetherness. Except my mum.

When DD started to eat again she wrote to my mum and explained how hard it was and how she wanted to spend time with her having coffee/cake/nothing at all etc without having to talk about food but my mum just doesn't get it. She still asks DD for diet hints or declines food/drink because she is feeling 'fat' - a trigger word for DD. Two years into DD's recovery my mum still obsesses about food and calories with her and DD is too loving/polite/damaged to pull her up on it.

For the record my mum is 5ft tall and a size 10/12. This is not a case of someone big needing help or advice. Is there any way I can get her to understand that what is a vain obsession for her is a life threatening illness for DD. What. I really want is for her to JUST SHUT UP.

MumInBrussels Sun 20-Dec-15 06:43:55

Can you tell her exactly that? "Mum, I know you're interested in losing weight, but DD can't be part of that. She was really ill, before, and her doctors have said that talking about weight loss might make her ill again. Please find something else to talk about."

Sounds like your mum might have some eating issues of her own... Or maybe she thinks of it as almost a shared hobby type thing, and needs to be encouraged by you or your daughter to find a new hobby that she and your DD can share?

MsColouring Sun 20-Dec-15 07:09:31

You are absolutely within your rights to tell your mum to stop as much as you need to and it sounds like she has massive issues herself if she thinks this is appropriate. Try the 'broken record' approach just repeating the same words as mum as you need to e.g. 'dd can't have this conversation with you'. Hopefully it will eventually sink in.

Billben Sun 20-Dec-15 07:29:54

You need to set your mum straight. If she thinks her current behaviour is acceptable, she won't get the message unless it is spelt out to her. I wouldn't put up with it for sure

MissFitt68 Sun 20-Dec-15 07:54:29

You can't stop her tho, at all. How /what she says is up to her. How will your dd manage new friends/colleagues discussing nutrition or anything food related?

Creampastry Sun 20-Dec-15 08:04:45

Set your mum straight, you may need to be harsh to get the message across but if she truly loves your dd then she will shut the fuck up

Julietee Sun 20-Dec-15 08:13:58

I was your DD 12 years ago, OP. Eventually I snapped and told my grandma to never mention my weight to me again, and, bless her, she hasn't.

liinyo Sun 20-Dec-15 10:45:15

MissFit68 has a good point. DD is working now and has a new circle of friends most of whom do not know about her ED. She has to live with the usual social comments about weight/feeling fat/eating ' naughty' foods etc and she copes well. She understands the world cannot change to accommodate her mental illness, just as alcoholics do not expect pubs to close or that their mates should stop drinking. What hurts her and potentially sabotages her is when people she loves and respects (specially my mum and a couple of once very close friends) talk as if anorexia was a desirable lifestyle choice. That is exactly what DD used to think and she is terrified of going down that path again.

People are right when they say my mum has her own issues in this area although she cannot see it. I have spoken to her about this issue many times (always politely, I couldn't be rude to her, another deep rooted issue) and now she will only make those comments when I am not present. The unhappy consequence for her is that now DD avoids her and their once close connection is dwindling.

Reading this makes me sad - I can see a pattern of damage that has harmed my daughter, me, my mum, even my own grandma. To all of you with young DCs, please learn from our mistakes.

Topseyt Sun 20-Dec-15 11:08:59

How would your Mum react if you were to spell out to her why her relationship with your DD is dwindling?

I don't mean that to sound horrible, just that you and/or your DD may actually need to be blunt with her to get the point across if she is persistently not getting it or burying her head in the sand over it.

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