Daughter called fat at school. Help me respond without making things worse!(7 Posts)
My 7 year old daughter was called fat today (she is not but is very tall for her age and is therefore quite a bit bigger than the other girls. Having a history of eating disorders myself I.am anxious how to respond/handle this in order to boost her resilience and minimise the effect on her. This is the second time this year and she is very switched on. Thanks in advance for any advice
Do you want to reaping to your daughter or the school?
In all honesty, name calling is pretty frequent at this age in IME. I just told mine to ignore it and that sometimes people say unkind things because they’re upset or angry but that it doesn’t make them true.
If it is the same child then maybe a quiet word with the teacher. Fat is a word I have told my children they are not to use if they are talking about a person, but I know it is a very common school age insult.
Definitely talk to the teacher. But also get her bmi/percentile checked as over weight children are also taller.
@teaandcake on how to respond to her without making a bigger deal of it but also not being too dismissive. Just worry so much about her developing my issues
But also yes I am very realistic about this type of name calling happening and totally get it! Just concerned about the body image side as I am aware she is approaching a sensitive age
Dismiss the comment as absolute nonsense but perhaps go on to say that some people who name call often do so when they are feeling insecure about themselves.
So, this girl who called her fat most likely feels insecure and anxious about herself. So she drags other people down (who look confident and strong) to make herself feel better.
Perhaps establish the fact that all girls and women are different. All sizes and shapes. And that's what makes us beautiful and strong and unique. As such, it should be celebrated. Negativity towards it should be ignored.
I have a few lines I use with my daughter of a similar age when it comes to weight:
- when she compares herself with others I tell her she's perfect, just the way she is
- we discuss that it's fine for people to be different shapes- especially when it comes to things like height, genes are a big factor and some of her class have big tall genes and some have smaller genes, same as eye colour etc. And everyone grows at different rates so some will stop earlier and others will catch up.
- she sometimes comments on my weight- I'm a size 12 so not huge but she comments that my belly is still big post pregnancy and that I'm not as slim as some mums in the playground. I put a brave face on (while inwardly cringing And wanting the ground to swallow me up) and say that I am perfectly happy just as I am, and does think it's more important to be happy or skinny? She always says happy.
- i try to be clear that it's not polite to comment on other people's weights and it's also not her business.
I also NEVER comment on my own weight in front of her. Same with discussing calories and dieting. We do discuss the difference between healthy foods and foods that are still fine but better consumed as treats rather in huge quantity.
Too early to tell whether a bit of science and a bit of pretending I think I'm gorgeous will pay off, but these are the strategies we're using.
However, if it was said to her in a way that was intended to hurt her feelings, I'd also raise it with the school.
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