Mother Slammed Online After Calling 12-Year-Old Daughter ‘Large,’ Encouraging Her to Count Calories
A mother is being criticized online after calling her young daughter "large" and sharing that she is teaching her to count calories at the age of 12.
The internet has accused the mom of potentially encouraging an eating disorder in her child after she posted on the parenting forum Mumsnet.
In her post, the woman shared her tween daughter has a negative relationship with food and over-eating.
Content warning below // disordered eating
"Once they're post 18 I feel its their decision to be who they want to be, but (and sometimes this is unasked of) try to guide their decisions to healthy eating—my point being that its fine for them to be 'large' but I always stress a balanced diet and healthy exercise routine," the woman wrote.
She explained that she, her own mother and her other three children, who are autistic, have all "struggled" with their weight.
Regarding her youngest daughter, the 12-year-old, she wrote that "all my normal coping strategies have failed. She's like a heat seeking missile for sugar." The mom has even given up baking.
Now she won't even bring snacks into their home.
"Fast forward—so I have stopped buying 'snacks,' biscuits, puddings—in fact anything that might represent a treat (feel like the grinch). But DD3 [dear daughter 3] is really intelligent/clever! For the last nine months I daren't have sugar or flour and butter in the house!" she continued.
"To give an example.... She ate three full fat sesame bagels for breakfast. How do I tell her this is unreasonable without her screeching at me that I'm calling her fat," the mother added.
In the comments, users had strong reactions to the post. Some blamed the mother, pointing out that the daughter's behavior could be classified as an eating disorder.
"It kind of sounds like you've taught her to be obsessed with food and now she has a binge eating disorder. Counting calories isn't going to help. Do you not provide any treats at all? It looks like you've tried to restrict too much so she is now obsessed," one user wrote.
"You have literally created an eating disorder in your child. I think you need professional advice now," another reader weighed in.
"You've given your kid an eating disorder. It's not normal to not buy sugar or flour. You've not taught your child a healthy balance from pre-birth, what makes you think they'll just wake up one day and know," someone else commented.
Hopefully the mother takes the comments to heart and is able to help herself and her daughter find a healthy balance.
If you or someone you know has an eating disorder, help is available through the National Eating Disorders Helpline. To speak to someone on the phone, dial 1-800-931-2237.