Thursday, 3 September 2015

Why I don't want my daughter to hear the 'F' word

As you may or not know, I'm currently in the last trimester of my second pregnancy. A few weeks ago, I was stood in the front of the mirror. Normally, I am relatively happy with my body shape and the curves that pregnancy brings. But on this particular day, all I could see were my imperfections, and lots of them.  None of my clothes looked right, I thought my bum and hips looked enormous, and at least 100 times bigger than the previous day. Quite frankly I didn't like what I saw.  And it was then I said it.  

I turned to my husband and said, 'Do you think I look really fat today?'. My husband immediately shot a glance towards the corner of the room where our three year daughter was happily spinning around in her princess costume. I shut up straight away. I don't want my daughter hearing that word from me ever again. 



For me, saying that word in front of my daughter meant that I was introducing her to this inherent and dangerous concept in our society. Let's face it, there isn't a day that goes by without the fat/thin/weight debate rearing its head.  The words fat and thin are banded about like they are commonplace.  

I wonder how damaged the next generation will be.  Bombarded with cleverly airbrushed images, selfies galore and the impossible pressure to look like an image that is clearly unattainable

Where has 'normal' gone in all of this? Our view of bodies is so skewed, that we look in disgust if we have cellulite, if our bums are a bit bigger or wobble, or at our changing and ageing body shapes.  Where is the wonder at how amazing our bodies are? That are legs walk us around every day? That we have a body that functions? That we are able to run after our children? 

To me, it's not about size or shape. It's recognising what is 'normal' and that's we have lost. And it's up to me to teach my daughter about a normal, healthy body.  Of loving your body, accepting every part of it, being grateful for every part of it.  Before she sees the sadness in the world of how we really have lost the plot with body image.  

That's why I will never stand in front of the mirror again and utter those stupid, stupid words.  By teaching my daughter, I guess I have to teach myself too. Life is too short and our bodies are way too precious.  



30 comments:

  1. Oh I do agree - I feel the same about my daughter. She is 9 and very skinny and active. She knows that 'fat' is not a nice word and was very upset when someone said that to her friend. On the the other hand after four children I am far than happy with my body but really try to keep my meltdowns away from her ears for that reason #brilliantblogposts

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    1. Yep, completely agree, but it is hard isn't it?!
      Thanks for reading and taking the time to comment.

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  2. It's so true, but unfortunately as they go to school and are surrounded by other children whose parents DON'T think the same way. I've tried to teach my daughter the importance of what someone is like on the inside and to embrace differences, that's what's important, not the way you look. I just hope this next generation of women embrace health rather than skinny as a means of looking after their bodies
    #BrilliantBlogPosts

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  3. So true, all the photoshopping etc doesn't help as it creates an image of perfection that none of us can live up to. Totally agree. It may say alot about me that when I clicked on the link in #brilliantblogposts, this was not the f word I thought it would be.

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    1. He,he! I wondered if people may think I might mean the other 'F' word. That's another blog post entirely! Thanks for stopping by.

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  4. Such a great post, it's terrible how we speak to ourselves and hubby always tells me to "Stop being mean to my wife" if I'm having a go at myself for whatever reason. I do think it's so important to try to not pass these issues on to our children xx #BrilliantBlogPosts

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  5. I sooooo agree with this post! My aunty had an eating disorder brought on by childhood bullying and overhearing my Grandma being unhappy with her own body and her constant negativity. We all need to be more positive and forgiving about how we look x #BrilliantBlogposts

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    1. Yes, couldn't agree more. Sorry to hear your aunty, it just shows the damaging impact such negative can have on impressionable young minds. Thanks for sharing x

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  6. Well said! All I want is for my little girl to be happy and healthy. Negotiating the world of selfies and social media is going to be interesting. All I can do is give her all the right tools to deal with it and be supportive. Eek! #brilliantblogposts

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    1. Yes, all we can do is give our little ones the right tools. Thanks for reading and taking the time to comment.

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  7. Love this Laura. The same thing has happened to be before - I have said something similar in front of my daughter and then realised I really don't want her to hear me say that about myself. It does make you think about what negative things you say about yourself doesn't it? It is a scary age our children are growing up in and it terrifies me, but hopefully having parents that teach them what is important and what really matters means that they won't be too affected by it xx #brillblogposts

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    1. Thank you Louise, and it does really make you think doesn't it?
      Thank you for reading x

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  8. I feel exactly the same as you hun and I am so scared that despite my best efforts that horrible world will impact on my daughter x

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    1. It's hard isn't it? I want to protect my daughter forever, but in reality all we can do is give them a positive start so they can deal with any negativity as they get older. Thanks for stopping by x

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  9. Oh my gosh I completely agree with this post. My partner turned around and called our daughter chubby the other day. It was only as a joke but I got really defensive and we've both promised to never ever say anything negative about her appearance ever again. I am so unconfident and I really don't want my daughter to feel this way about herself. What a beautiful and brilliant post. xx #brilliantblogposts

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  10. Yeah I really agree with what you say. We have to be so careful what we say around impressionable little minds. If I feel fat I keep it to myself and in the long term want to stop being negative towards myself and more accepting. Linking up with #brilliantblogposts

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    1. Thank you and completely agree. Thanks for reading.

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  11. I totally feel the same! Sienna is nearly 3 and I have already given her the concept that the word 'fat' is bad and not nice. Unfortunately she does already know what it means but I try my hardest not to use it or point out my flaws when she is around. I struggled with body confidence as a teenager as I was overweight. I want her to be the opposite which is why I try to encourage a healthy lifestyle for her, so it comes naturally and she doesn't even have to think about it! I hope it works! x

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    1. I'm sure it will work Kerry, you sound like you are so aware of it and are creating a very positive environment for Sienna. Thanks so much for reading and for stopping by x

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  12. This made me feel...so much. I felt envious of your usual happiness with your body, I have to admit, as it's not something I have ever had. But then I felt immense sadness at the fact that there will be other women reading this who will be thinking exactly like me...there are so many of us. So many. And I never even grew up with a mother who was that concerned with her own body image. But my kids, at least my older boy, will have grown up with a mother who is openly negative about herself...and I hate that thought. I'm glad your daughter has a positive influence like you, we all need as much armour as we can get growing up and living in our image obsessed society.

    #brilliantblogposts

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    1. Thank you so much for your comments, and I'm really sad to hear about your negativity towards yourself. I know we all have off days, but for some, feeling negative about themselves is a bit more than on an off day. Thank you for reading and sharing your thoughts. We are all so much more than what we see in the mirror. x

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  13. Such a wise, important post, I don't want my sons thinking that word is normal, I want them to have positive body image. Thanks for linking up to #brilliantblogposts x

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    1. Thank you so much and it is so important for boys to have that positive body image too x

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  14. Great post Laura. I think we (as women) all have days when we think like that. I wrote a post about a year ago about my baby's chubby legs, they were so chubby and I loved them. I'm not sure reading it back whether that's a post I want her to read now because it puts her and chubby together. I don't know how it's best to project a healthy body image on to our daughters, but I think not using the F word is a great start. Lizzie http://www.lizziesomerset.com/chubby-legs/. xo

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