notesfromthetrenchesIII

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Monday, January 30, 2006

Over At Dotmoms

I have a new post up over at dotmoms titled "Weighty Issues For My Daughter" in which I write about distorted body images, self esteem, and my simple hope for my daughter.

18 Comments:

Blogger Huffs said...

I also have a FIERCLY independent, smart, strong daughter--and your thoughts could have easily come straight from my mouth!!!!!!!!

1:32 PM  
Anonymous Tammy said...

I just wanted to say that I think you are a terrific writer. I really enjoy reading your posts. Thanks!

1:40 PM  
Blogger Meg said...

Oh, this is a topic near and dear to my formerly-eating-disorded little heart.

I feel those same feelings about Sophia - I have to be a healthy, confident, proud, happy woman for her. Want to start a support club?

2:19 PM  
Blogger halloweenlover said...

Oh Chris, that was just beautiful. I got teary at the end. I hope I too can rise above my weight issues for future children I have.

Hugs. I'll join the club with you and Meg.

4:36 PM  
Blogger Abigail said...

I have no idea what your American sizes correspond to in British sizing but I'm sure it's irrelevant. Small, medium and large are more in the mind than in the flesh. Don't just tell your daughter she's gorgeous, let her see YOU looking in the mirror saying how gorgeous YOU are. Have fun admiring yourself. If you can't manage it, be ruthless with your crummy self-image and try method-acting gorgeousness. Free your inner exhibitionist - if that isn't too much of a paradox. Nothing wrong with that. Anyone who has a blog, has an inner exhibitionist.

5:12 PM  
Blogger Abigail said...

Okay, Chris, so you're super slim despite being mother of seven and yet you hate your body and feel fat. Having now read the comments on DotMoms I realise I'm one of the people who 'doesn't get it'. I have now tried to delete my previous comment in case I have caused offence. I couldn't delete it. It didn't work. Sorry. I'm one of those averagely fat people who can look in the mirror and think I must have a distorted body image because I'm overweight but I think I look quite nice actually. I RAGE at the media images of womanhood that girls are supposed to aspire to. OH let me just lie down with a good book and a nice cup of tea. And - God forbid - a biscuit. Sorry, if that sounds facetious.

5:38 PM  
Blogger Abigail said...

Oh God - that last comment of mine read even worse than the first! Sorry! Right, that's it. It's back to lurking. I'm never never never going to write a comment on a comment board ever again. Big Yellow House is the first and the last. Thank you and goodnight. I'll stick to reading. You're a great read, Chris. I love this blog.

5:48 PM  
Blogger Liz said...

This post really touched me. I am a recovered bulimic/compulsive eater, and, while I'm coming at it from the opposite direction (I have always been fat), I have seen and read too much about it to ever say that any woman is immune from body-hatred, whatever she weighs or looks like. Thanks for your honesty.

Liz in Australia

7:00 PM  
Anonymous Cyndi said...

I saw that magazine cover and thought the same thing!!! The article is about how she is suffering from an eating disorder (she is sick people). Yet, they've turned her into the cover girl and glorified the illness about which they are supposedly "reporting." I also remember reading that she started losing weight when she was admitted to the hospital for an infection or something. Anyway, she lost about 20 pounds, and everyone kept telling her how great she looked (again, she was SICK). There are so many things wrong with this.

I have a 3 year old daughter and I can't help but be cognizant of this issue. I cringe when I hear grown women talking about how fat they are (they're not) in front of her. And it seems like all of the female celebrities lately weigh about 85 pounds. Frankly, I don't know how any of them actually menstruate with so little body fat. Right now, I just enjoy my daughter's dancing around the house and focus on telling her how fantastic she is. And, I don't whine about how fat I am - at least not in front of her.

Sorry for going on. It just felt like you pulled that right out of my head.

I'll end by saying, I LOVE your blog. You are a fantastic writer. I emailed you last week in response to the "how do you do it" posts, but I'll say it here too -- I am completely enamored by you and your family.

1:05 AM  
Blogger Jennifer said...

awwww, chris! you made me cry!

7:30 AM  
Blogger novaks8 said...

Chris,
I was reading an article in Cosmo yesterday (my daughter's magazine)and it was done by a woman who finally beat anorexia.
For someone who is overweight it is so hard for me to understand but I imagine it is so hard to deal with when everyone keeps telling you that you look great.

I'm sure your daughter will grow up healthy and happy because you are aware of the issue.

I also hope that you can find some relief from it too.

7:59 AM  
Blogger Gretchen said...

As someone who has never *never* been a size 2 (currently I am that times 10 - and THAT is scary) I will admit it is hard to understand; but I think you did a great job explaining it. I would suppose that you feel just as rotten as I do, even though I would LOVE to be your size. It isn't about size at all, it's about how you perceive yourself in relation to others around you.

I have a question for you; how does Rob treat the whole issue? Does he comment on your size? Does he comment on how other women look? How does he treat your daughter? Does he emphasize her looks to her, or blatently love her for her personality, for who she is? That I think will make a huge impact in how she grows up to see herself. If you can, share with him how you feel about these things, and that you want to spare your dd from the insecurities you suffered from.

By the way, my father pretty much ignored me, working all the time and then coming home tired and just wanting peace and quiet, and I grew up feeling invisible to boys/men. I feel not worth noticing, no matter what I look like, so I tend to neglect my looks altogether (hence the size 20). Make sure Rob doesn't do that either.

These are just my thoughts, take them for what it's worth. Good luck.

10:27 AM  
Blogger Chris said...

Abigail,
You comments were not the least bit offensive, really they were fine!

Gretchen,
Interesting what you say about your father, since I didn't have a father at all. Perhaps the absence of a father, percieved or otherwise, is what contributes to poor self esteem. My daughter is lucky to have the father she does, and all the brothers, who love her unconditionally.

10:40 AM  
Anonymous jean said...

you have no idea how your article yesterday affected me I am a mother of 5 (three girls) and a size 2 and hating that I just can't be the size I used to be (sick huh). And try explaining I to anyone else it's imposible. But you are soo right about changing your attitude for your daughter my oldest daughter is 9yo and I see that I need to...I don't know change something ... something so that she doesn't see what I see when I look in the mirror. Thankyou so much it was a great post I am a big fan and about my husband, I can at least answer for him, he liked me when I was pg and had a big bum (veriety he called it) and he likes me everything in between it is really ME and no one esle. thank you thank you
jean

4:31 PM  
Blogger harvestmoon said...

Oh Chris; what an incredible article. I'm one of those weird fat body distorted people who sees pictures of herself and thinks, "how the HELL did I get THAT FAT? It MUST be the light/photo/window/something else, cause I am DEFINITELY NOT that fat." Go figure. So I can understand the distortion - just from the other end of the spectrum. Maybe because I've only been fat since I had kids and I still think of myself as a single triathalete? :)

The kids see differences in sizes - this was brought about by Harry Potter (the dursley son; what is his name?) as before that, the boys didn't know the word "fat". Somehow, we've not discussed beauty either. I'm hoping we can continue to support their thriving self esteems before they're hit over the head with society's expectations of beauty. I really have NO gameplan.

9:14 PM  
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