From Teresa - 05/16/04 - IP#:  Click here to reply  
Hey, I am a parent. I need advice. My step son who lives with me is very over weight. He is 16 and at least 75lbs overweight. His mother is also very overweight. They make fat jokes about their problem. That bothers me. I try to talk to him about healthy food choices and he says that he is just fine with the way he is and that they make jokes because they accept themselves. I don't think that is really the case. I think people make jokes about themselves when they are uncomfortable about themselves. Anyway, he just keeps getting bigger and I worry about his self-esteem and his physical health. How can his father and I talk to him about this and get him to open up?
Reply from me, Child's Age 14 - 05/17/04  - IP#:
leave him alone if he wants to be thin he'll ask for help.
Reply from Kate, Child's Age 18 - 05/16/04  - IP#:
I think that humor is probably his way of dealing with the emotional pain and social stigma that comes with being overweight. It sounds as though he is also in denial about his weight being a problem. In some ways, I think using humor to deal with a situation is a good thing, unless it is used as a crutch to divert responsibility from a problem. If humor is keeping him from being depressed about being overweight, that's great, but if it's keeping him from addressing his feelings about it, then I would say it's a problem.
Unfortunately, as I have learned from being both on the receiving end and the giving end in the situation, you can't make someone change their lifestyle--they have to decide to do it. My advice is to find out from talking to your stepson what would be his biggest motivator to lose weight, and once that is established, encourage him to make that one of his top priorities. If he really doesn't think being overweight is a problem, I suggest giving him information about the dangers of obesity or getting him in touch with a doctor in person who could tell him about them. It makes it a lot more real to have your own medical chart in front of you when discussing high cholesterol levels and type 2 diabetes. Most of all, just emphasize that no matter what weight he is you will always love and be there for him, because that means so much, especially in terms of self esteem.
Hope this helps!
Reply from devin, Child's Age 14 - 05/16/04  - IP#:
I wish I had a mom or someone that would help me with eating healthy. I'll listen to you.
Reply from Elizabeth, Child's Age 13 - 05/16/04  - IP#:
hey what my mom did for me was she took me to the doctors and had a doctor talk to me and he told me to eat healthy and stuff like that my freind was just like him and he had a hreat attack cuz he was over waight i think you should ralkl to him and tell him that your worryed about him and ask him to think about his body. well good luck.
Reply from KAITLYN, Child's Age 14 - 05/16/04  - IP#:
O, I just looked at what you put on the parents board. Well, there isn't very much you can do, maybe talk to his mom a/b it.
Reply from KAITLYN, Child's Age 14 - 05/16/04  - IP#:
I suggest when he is at your house feed him stuff like fruits, vegetables, etc. Also think of one fun activity he can do like basketball, soccer, whatever. If he likes it he might want to do it more. If you want to talk to him about it, maybe you and your husband could take him to the doctor and see what she/he says. Hope I helped. -love and God Bless