Tuesday, 4 October 2011

Being a Fat Mummy

I often read bloggers in the fat acceptance world. Many have discussed how some governments are classifying having a fat child as tantamount to child abuse. Which is mad. But what I have yet to read often is fat women like me stating that actually out loud (although many may think it) that while they themselves are fat and happy to be so (or at least accepting of it) they don't want their children to be fat.

I almost think of it as the big elephant in the room. Can take your fat acceptance ideals and views to the point where you would have no issue with your children being fat? Ok, issue is probably the wrong word. I mean to say - all things being equal would you prefer your children to be fat or slim?

Sure, let's assume that if both parents are fat, then genetics are going to be an issue for the children to have a propensity to be obese (something like 80%). But genetics aren't everything. Lifestyle and environment play a huge role.

In the Eclectica household my husband is slim and comes from a relatively slim family (the odd case of middle age spread aside). My parents were overweight, with my mother dieting constantly. Which is why I started. Thinking back I don't remember being fat as a child until AFTER I started dieting. But I disgress.

I don't want to teach my child body hate or food issues because I don't want her to go through the pain I did growing up. But I also don't want her to be fat. 99% because of her and I want the best for her and really I think that even if in her adult years so becomes fat, being so as a child is not ideal. But there is also a little voice inside that says its also because I don't want to feel the hate of everyone in the world crashing down on me if she was fat.

I don't want to be the stereotypical fat mother with the fat child eating chips in some dodgy burger bar. I don't want her to be pitied and me to be vilified.

So far, well she eats everything and anything and eats lots some days and less others and we give her access to any food in the house. She wants to eat what we eat, so we eat healthily at home, but eat junk on occasion (although not as a treat as my husband pointed out that food is food, not a treat. Fair point).

So there it is. I'm ok with the size of my arse but there are some issues around body size that I'm not ok with.

And I don't have all the answers and I have really no idea what the right thing is to do. Being a mummy is fucking hard work and I'm scared of getting it wrong. That much I do know.


  1. aww, you've made want to leap into my computer and hug you!

    I cant sympathise entirely, what with not being a parent, but I do know that I'd feel the same if I was. I can very firmly root my own issues with food firmly in the lessons taught by my parents, and it would scare me to hell that I could pass them onto another generation if I was to become a parent.

    This article has really gotten me thinking, as my sister has children and also, albeit the bottom end of the plus size scale, is fat too and I've never thought to have the conversation with her.

    I cant really offer that much advice or comment, as I know if someone that hadnt experienced something weighed in too much on something, I'd want to slap them! I am going to shove this post into the path of my sister....I think she'd definitely be able to sympathise and feel comforted by someone in the same position as her!

  2. I'm a fat mum, but don't want fat kids. I'm accepting of what I look like now...but that has taken me til my current age of 40 to feel a little less of an outsider in this deranged world. I have maintained my current size since deciding not to give a damn what people think and I have stopped the extreme dieting which only added, not subtracted weight.
    My kids are both slim, my daughter being super skinny. They eat well, and all food is, as your hubby says, food. There is nothing intrinsically evil about anything, some things are just better nutritionally than others. I have never bemoaned my size or anything to my kids, and food is something to be enjoyed. We sit to a home cooked meal most nights, and it is a good time for the family. But not, I would not want my children going through the shit storm I went through as a fat child/teen. Simple as that. I embrace fat activism, the fatosphere as helped me enormously, but the price is high and bloody painful. I'm the only fatty in my large family, so if we only talk genetics, the kids will not be fat. But we also know it can be so much more than that....

  3. Thanks for your comments. Annie, I agree totally that while I am all for fat activism and like myself as fat, I would rather not have been really and want to avoid my children being so, if possible.
    Confusedbrit hope it is of interest to your sister!!