Another Fat Princess: Beautiful

AnotherFatPrincess By AnotherFatPrincess, 28th Sep 2011 | Follow this author | RSS Feed
Posted in Wikinut>Writing>Personal Experiences

The personal experiences of a fat, 30-something woman living in a world that is frighteningly "Fat-Phobic".


So I read this news article this morning that both enraged me and broke my heart:

CHILDREN as young as four are being hospitalised for eating disorders after refusing to eat and going on dangerous diets in their quest to be thin.

The largest eating disorders clinic in NSW, based at The Children's Hospital at Westmead, has reported a 270 per cent spike in the number of children being admitted to hospital over the past decade.

Even more alarming is the rise in the number of children being treated as outpatients at the hospital - it has increased more than 10-fold, up from 298 in 2003 to 3157 in 2009.

Clinic co-director Dr Michael Kohn said patients are getting younger.

"The average age for presentation is decreasing and the reason is the stress on young people has increased, so that those people vulnerable to develop eating disorders are doing so at a younger age," Dr Kohn said.

On Thursday alone, Dr Kohn saw 12 new patients including a five-year-old.

Dr Kohn identified several factors driving down the age of patients with eating disorders including media portrayal of thin women and cute men as attractive ideals, the amount of food advertising targeting children, and that the children of obese parents don't want to end up like them.

"The fact that children have obese parents and don't want to get fat, wanting to be healthy but in the process diet and lose weight unhealthily, leading to the development of eating disorders - it's a group we haven't seen before," Dr Kohn said.

The average age of girls reaching puberty had also decreased, resulting in the sexualisation of girls at a younger age and making them more vulnerable to body image issues.

Commonly a child will start to diet or lose weight as some form of body comparison at school, or they'll be learning about healthy eating at school.

Relationships not working out and the desire for popularity can also drive eating disorders in children.

Christine Morgan, chief executive of eating disorder charity The Butterfly Foundation, said girls were suffering from negative body image issues from an earlier and earlier age.

"To be on a diet is an everyday thing and there are numerous consequences to normalising this behaviour, especially for young people," she said.

"Young people are being influenced by their peers and the social media that their appearance equals their value and therefore there is merit in being slim."

Dietician Arlene Normand said eating disorder numbers had reached critical levels.

"There are not enough beds available for the number of children we're seeing with eating disorders," Ms Normand said.

She said mothers who skipped meals, embarked on crash diets and visited the gym too often were poor role models for their impressionable children.

"I'm seeing a lot of children now who are being bullied at school due to obesity, and very often these obese children become anorexics due to bullying," Ms Normand said.

"It's very hard sometimes to teach them to be moderate," she said.

A recent study of 482 NSW school students aged 14 to 17 by the Australia Research Institute at Sydney Adventist Hospital found 54 per cent of girls had dieted, with 11 per cent doing so "often".

The survey also revealed 28 per cent of schoolgirls skipped meals to control their weight and seven per cent used self-induced vomiting to control or reduce their weight.


On the SAME PAGE of this news article is a link to another article titled "A newly slim Kelly Osbourne will attend Australian Fashion Week."



Do they not get it???

You A-holes cannot have it both ways... if you demonise fat; if you make it sinful and dirty and wrong, if you BLAST celebrity weight battles across the front pages of your magazines and your newspapers and your ezines, if you constantly show fat-phobic shows like The Biggest Loser on t.v., and advertise weight loss solutions on every channel at every moment of the freaking day; if you show ads for fast food joints during every other ad break THEN YOU ARE GOING TO SCREW UP OUR CHILDREN!!!!!

You cannot turn around and go "oh, no no, not you children, you don't need to be stick thin and anorexic and look like skinny boys. You don't need to lose 5 kilos or flatten your stomach, or make sure there's 5 inches between your thighs... only the ADULTS have to be painfully thin, paranoid, insecure, self-hating diet machines."

IF YOU WANT TO MAKE THE ADULTS THIN THEN YOU HAVE TO ACCEPT THAT CHILDREN WILL WANT TO FOLLOW SUIT. We are their role models, we are the ones that are teaching them what is good and right with the world. If WE are sending them the message that fat is EVIL (and ugly and worthless and sinful and shameful and dirty and awful and worthy of hatred) what the hell do you think they're gonna do??? When they see Mummy staring in the mirror pinching her fat and frowning at the scales and weighing every morsel of food that she eats and crying at night because Daddy or the neighbour or the mail-man or the T.V. said she was putting on a bit around the middle; how do you think they are going to feel about weight and body issues and worth??

The size of clothing you wear....... the number that flashes up on the scale..... the number of lettuce leaves you ate (or didn't) for lunch does not equate your worth. It doesn't even add into your worth, nor does it impact, detract, or influence your worth. Your self worth, my self worth, the self worth of my beautiful children, and yours, has NOTHING to do with food or body shape but it has everything to do with soul and spirit and compassion and love.

Tomorrow, as you go through your day.... tell someone they're beautiful. Doesn't matter who... just tell them... doesn't matter if they look a little less than perfect that day (heaven forbid) tell them anyway. TELL YOURSELF if you're too afraid to tell someone else. You are beautiful no matter your size or your shape or your eating habits. My children are beautiful, your children are beautiful, and so are the ones who are suffering with a disorder that no child should ever be aware of.

We are all beautiful, because we are.



Acceptance, Fat, Fat Acceptance, Feminism, Feminists, Haes, Obesity, Obesity And Overweight, Phobia, Size Acceptance, Size And Beauty, Size Doesnt Matter, Societal Ills, Society, Society Today, Weight

Meet the author

author avatar AnotherFatPrincess
Fat, Fierce, Feminist, 30. I write about the world of fat-phobia and how it feels to live in it.

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author avatar Ennael
28th Sep 2011 (#)

so society is brainwashing our children and putting undue pressure on them...dont they have enough to worry about.. like education etc besides having to deal with this as well...let children be children..for your childhood is very short..and you have the rest of your life to be an adult..

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author avatar GV Rama Rao
3rd Nov 2011 (#)

I agree we can't have it both ways. I think there should be contests for healthy looking children. This will prompt other children to eat well.

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author avatar GV Rama Rao
3rd Nov 2011 (#)

I agree we can't have it both ways. I think there should be contests for healthy looking children. This will prompt other children to eat well.

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