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Do I show dd the letter which will say she's overweight?

(22 Posts)
taptonaria27 Wed 25-Nov-15 21:16:46

My dd (almost 11) has always been on the overweight side - she varies between slightly overweight to more so depending on growth spurts.
Obviously I am not happy about this and have posted and read many threads. We do lots of exercise including always walking to and from school, I cook healthily from scratch (am not overweight myself), I do as much as I can to counterbalance the fact that she is sedentary by nature and loathes veg (but eats a wide variety, knowingly and unknowingly).
My dh, her dad, is obese but also is big in frame and tall, ds, 8 is sturdy and solid but has never been overweight.
They are what I would call normal kids in that they love sweets and crisps etc but they do not get many of these and I am always being told by my dd that her friends think her lunchbox is really small and lacking in "treats" (pitta or two slices bread with a filling, frube or dried fruit and small biscuit/ fruit flakes/ Choc rice cake, so 3 things and I encourage her to take an apple for break. She always clears her plate, rarely leaves food (if it's something she likes) and prefers brown bread, rice and pasta to white as its more filling.
So overall I am doing as much as I can to keep her weight ok, she has no concept that she is overweight, she has great self esteem and confidence and I think that she will be genuinely shocked and upset to be told that she is overweight. While I don't want to dent that confidence she needs to take ownership and responsibility for what goes in her mouth especially when she goes to secondary next year. She would happily eat huge amounts of sweets and crisps if she was let loose and I am worried that as my input / control diminishes, her weight will go up drastically.
What to do? I'm inclined to show it to her as I'm sure she'll want to know anyway but need to be prepared to gently guide her through it.

yeOldeTrout Wed 25-Nov-15 21:19:22

are you sure she's no concept that she's overweight? 11yos usually know.

Maybe it would be better to get it out in the open.
What do you expect her to do with the official information?

quicklydecides Wed 25-Nov-15 21:20:20

Don't show her.
Jesus.
Stop buying her shit and calling it treats.

Emochild Wed 25-Nov-15 21:21:10

Have you looked at the contents of her lunch box ?

You'll be amazed at how much sugar is in fruit flakes, dried fruit etc

I'd be inclined to not tell her but have a family healthy change to less sugar and then the focus isn't just on her

Moln Wed 25-Nov-15 21:29:33

How big are her portions? This will give you an idea of what a portion should be.

All the items you listed from her lunch box after the sandwich are high in sugar.

wizzywig Wed 25-Nov-15 21:33:39

I know that if you are on weight watchers or slimming world, everything except the apple would have points attached to it as they arent 'low fat'. Try googling recommended daily sugar allowances to get an idea of what levels you should be keeping too.

dementedma Wed 25-Nov-15 21:33:36

If it helps both my DDS were overweight at that age and were well aware of it.
Now as young adults once is a size 10 and one a 12. Both are into exercise and fitness and are healthy young women. Don't make a huge issue of it and just watch portion size and try and encourage exercise.

janethegirl2 Wed 25-Nov-15 21:37:24

I'd not tell her but ask you to to look at her diet as a whole.

Memeto3boys Wed 25-Nov-15 21:49:25

I think it's quite normal at that age to be overweight a little she won't be long going in to puberty. A lot of children a a little cubby just before this happens. My ds is 11 at 9 he was classed being overweight he started puberty at 10 and is now 11 tall and extremely slender. One of the very first sign of puberty is suddenly getting taller and thinner I think around the age 8-10 mark their bodies prepare for this with stock piling so to speak

taptonaria27 Wed 25-Nov-15 21:53:06

I am well aware that her lunchbox has sugary items in it - she will regularly take a carrot or has cucumber and carrot sticks and hummus as one of the three items ( sandwich plus two), or sometimes it is a baby bel but she claims and is backed up by friends that she is the only one not to have crisps or chocolate or both everyday.
I could not make her portions smaller without her being hungry and I resent the comment to stop buying her shit and calling it treats - we live in a world that has unhealthy shit everywhere and I have a responsibility to give her to self control not to eat too much of it, I don't believe an outright ban is realistic though obviously her weight would be better if I did.
Frankly another issue I have is that she shares food with friends and eats goodness knows what else of their stuff too. Her best friend eats v little indeed and I think that my dd is regularly finishing her lunch, I have spoken to her often and at length about the fact that both lunches are the right amount for the child they're given to and that both parents need to know what their child is eating and she swears blind that she doesn't but it slips out.
It sounds horrible of me to say it but she is a greedy child, always checking out portion sizes and taking the biggest, we have just had words because she is having a mug of milk before bed as she has worked out it holds twice as much as the glasses that she should use. Food has often been a source of tension and arguments when I either chastise or refuse her food she wants.

Memeto3boys Wed 25-Nov-15 21:58:14

I think your going to end up making a big issue if you keep going on about what she eats how much ect. Yes you need to make sure she doesn't eat huge amounts but the more you push the more she will end up being a secret eater. Like I said puberty round the corner and that changes things regarding weight eating ect an awful lot I think you need to back of a little.

taptonaria27 Wed 25-Nov-15 22:00:23

Thank you meme, I'm scared that backing off will cause a huge weight gain but am equally worried that she'll end up with an eating disorder to try and be skinny.
It's a minefiedl!!!

WhoTheFuckIsSimon Wed 25-Nov-15 22:06:11

Can't you try and up the activity levels if you say she's sedentary? Family walks, bike rides, swimming.

Indole Wed 25-Nov-15 22:09:20

I don't think you should show her the letter. Apart from the dried fruit (which is bad for teeth anyway, but I understand why you want to give her something nice because her friends are having chocolate), her diet sounds perfectly reasonable.

Do you think her weight is a problem? I mean, do you think she is very overweight or just a bit? If just a bit, I would totally leave it and see what puberty brings. If she is very overweight, you need to start finding ways to get her moving about more as this will have more long term benefits than restricting food (and it is perfectly possibly to be fit and strong and healthy and a bit overweight, actually).

Also, you may find, as she gets older, that she genuinely wants to eat more healthily. I know I never got the point of vegetables until I was 14 or so. Before that they were just something my mum made me eat but from then on I did start to really enjoy them.

jipjap Wed 25-Nov-15 22:09:49

So what, her friends can think what they like. They'll all doubt end up obese with future health problems. Show her the letter.

Memeto3boys Wed 25-Nov-15 22:11:46

It is a minefield. I think backing of will cause less problems in the long run. My Dh was diet controlled by his mum all his life till he moved in with me when he was 24. When he moved in I would find empty sweet packets hidden round the house. He would hide and eat. If I asked if he had eaten something out of fridge or cupboard he would totally deny he hadm with in months he was piling the weight on. His mum even went as far as telling me I had to control his food intake hide things ect from him. I refused it's took years for him to stop being so secretive and stop gorging when he was alone. I think diet control can do more than just make people have complexes about starving themselves it can also push them to be the other way. Treats are fine don't completely deny any food group. Just maybe encourage more active lifestyle.

messystressy Wed 25-Nov-15 22:18:08

My daughter is much much younger than your own but is overweight. My son, of a similar age to my daughter, is skinny as anything. They are fed the same thing except she gets a smaller portion. We are extremely strict - she has half a sandwich, carrots and cucumber and yoghurt (with no added sugar) in her lunchbox. I suspect my daughter might be eating too much dairy so am going to substitute her nightly glass of milk with dinner for water. I am also going to start her doing dance or sports classes (she does swimming currently). I am not stressing, and think she will slim down in time. I agree not to isolate her and maybe start a new healthy outlook with lots of walking etc on the weekend. She might secretly thank you! Maybe see if she wants to do a class herself?

Susiesue61 Wed 25-Nov-15 22:25:33

My DD is 14 and has always been slightly big compared to her friends. She loves food and eats most things. She knows she is bigger than some, and most of the time is fine with it. She does however do absolutely loads of sport and dance every week, so her legs are big but solid muscle!
She chose not to be weighed in year 6 because she said she didn't need school to tell her she was fat! I wouldn't show her theletter but maybe try and make her fitter, rather than focus on weight smile

Kennington Wed 25-Nov-15 22:32:59

Maybe try more filling food - protein rich rather than carb rich then she will fill fuller longer
Not advocating the Atkins diet but it might help
It is hard to regulate at age 11 maybe she will change when she becomes a teen

WorraLiberty Wed 25-Nov-15 22:42:55

When you say 'We do lots of exercise', what do you mean OP?

Snossidge Wed 25-Nov-15 22:51:38

Everything in her lunch box other than the sandwich is sugary/junk food. I would definitely try to swap for more filling, less sugary foods.

Other children might eat more crap, but that's not really the issue.

NorthernLurker Wed 25-Nov-15 22:58:49

I wouldn't show her the letter OP. I also wouldn't ask on mumsnet for dietary advice for teens. You generally don't get a helpful perspective.

Your dd's self esteem is the most important thing. With strong self esteem she can decide for herself what shape she wants her body to be if she is to be comfortable in her own skin. Encourage activity as much as you can. The more active she is the better her general sense of well being.

Some children and teens have large appetites. They have to learn to regulate that themselves. You doing it for her won't help long term.

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