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Are You Obsessed With Your Child’s Weight?

Very funny baby watching her weight, isolated on whiteParents, I know it’s almost impossible not to worry when it comes to our kids. Are they eating enough, are they eating too much, are they sleeping enough or too little? Pretty much from the time they’re born our kids bear the brunt of our concern. But while it is our job to make sure they are healthy and happy, worrying about them endlessly doesn’t help.

Weight is one of the things it’s very easy to stress about. Parents study charts and have their babies weighed at the doctor right from the start to find out exactly how they measure up to other children. If they fall above or below the standards, it’s easy to panic.

I’ve been there. When my first son was born he was a very healthy 8-pound baby. One week later my obsession with his weight began, as he was gaining very slowly. I started wondering the things new parents wonder: Was he getting enough? Should we supplement? Was I not producing enough milk? The questions went on and on, and as the questions increased so did my concern.

My son was never a “chubby baby.” The first thing people always said to me when they met him was, “Oh my, he’s so tiny.” Every time someone said that it only confirmed my increasing obsession that he wasn’t big enough and he wasn’t getting enough nutrients. Even when I finally threw in the breastfeeding towel and switched to the bottle he still stayed small.

Fast forward 12 years later, and guess what? My son is still small. He’s just small for his age. Probably the tiniest in his class, and people STILL comment on how little he is. In all likelihood he will hit his growth spurt any day now, as his dad is a tall guy, but he may not. I’ve made peace with that. He is what he is, and he’s healthy, loved, talented and awesome no matter how big he is.

What I do wish, though, is that I could have relaxed about his size when he was younger. I wish I hadn’t spent so much time worrying and stressing about his weight. I wish I could have put some trust in him to provide what his body needed. All that worry lead me to pressure my son constantly around food, and that created some very bad food habits.


foodsense (1)Luckily, I found the answers around the time he was three. I started to change my perspective and my approach, which I explain in more detail in The Food Sense Program. It’s never too late to change your attitude about food so your child doesn’t end up obsessed with weight and size as well. This could cause binging or eating unhealthy, fatty foods to try to gain weight when they’re older, or could lead to dangerous dieting to lose weight.

So now, I’d like to hear YOUR thoughts! Do you have any advice you could share with parents who might be worrying about their child’s weight? A story about your own struggle / success with your own child’s weight? Please share in the ‘Comments’ section below…

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Dana’s Sleep Blog

Straight talk about sleep, parenting,
babies, toddlers, relationships… and
just about anything else!
My blog is a great place to find opinions, advice, the occasional rant, and some great videos about sleep.

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