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In a message dated 08/01/2004 19:46:34 Pacific Standard Time,
boujamama@... writes:

> I think the weight issue
> comes in when there is no will power from the person. My son has always
> eaten a basically good diet because of my eating habits and still he has
> a weight problem - go figure!

The old stereotype that obese people have "no willpower" leads to the belief
in society that obese or overweight people are somehow "less than" or weaker
or lazier than people without weight problems, simply because they can't be
bothered to stop eating, or don't make healthy choices. This is simply not the
case at all
I am obese, and I see this a direct result of having been controlled so much
around food as a child. I never learned to self-regulate because I wasn't
allowed to do so, and because I thought that I would rarely be allowed to eat
"junk" , when it was available I couldn't stop eating it till it was gone. Now
that I have started to allow myself free access to whatever I want to eat, when
ever I want it , that feeling is dissipating.(sp)
A shame that I had to wait until I was 40 to start to release myself from
the emotional hold all that control around food had on me.
A person who is anorexic would never be accused of not having any "willpower"
to solve the problem.
Children make great decisions for themselves, and it seems that the less
they are controlled the more they blossom and learn about themselves and their
own needs, food included.
Nancy in BC
( I don't often post about stuff, because the other guys are so much more
articulate, but I just HAD to say something here.)

[Non-text portions of this message have been removed]

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In a message dated 1/9/04 12:07:24 AM, LOWRIEK@... writes:

<< The old stereotype that obese people have "no willpower" leads to the
in society that obese or overweight people are somehow "less than" or weaker
or lazier than people without weight problems >>

A family is visiting here that we only see occasionally. The teenaged
daughter is a little pudgy. That's not bad, because she was a fat baby. The mom
was always, her whole life, fat, and had gastric bypass surgery (risked dying
while she had a child because our culture is so unforgiving of variations).

They've had two more children. The boy is SKINNY like his dad. If anyone
saw him in isolation of the family, they might think he never gets to eat. He
eats. The baby, first birthday Monday, is and has been since the day she was
born, round in all parts. It's not because she has no willpower, or that
she's lazy. She hardly ever sleeps and she's pulling up on everything and every

I have three children. My husband was fat from birth; I've seen the pictures.
Kirby is the heaviest. He's a bit soft in the face, and wears X-Large where
Marty wears Large. Kirby exercises more than anyone here, because he's
involved in karate. He's not doing karate to lose weight, he does it because he
likes it. He was there three hours yesterday, because he taught an extra class
and took two classes.

Marty is in most ways like his dad, physically, but has rarely pudged out as
he's grown taller. He weighed himself before getting on the new high-wire
bike at the children's museum, and he was a little over 200 lbs (204?). He turns
15 Wednesday.

Holly weighed herself there too. Riders were supposed to be 90 lbs. We
filled her pockets up with all nearby carkeys and pens; 89 lbs. She's nearly as
tall as I am.

None of my kids eat for fun or comfort. They're confident and comfortable,
rarely bored, and they just aren't huge eaters. Kirby eats least of all.

I'm not going to limit their food or shame them because of statistics, and
often that's what it boils down to. And I lost count years ago of the stories
of people whose mothers put them on diets when they were ten, and then they
would sneak food at home or other places, and when they were older and felt
bereft of their mother's affection and approval, ate themselves silly.

Happiness is way more important than people give it credit for being. Some
can't begin to imagine it because they've confused happiness with money or
weight loss or how new their car smells.