The thing people don't get is, we're not saying "Do nothing because it will damage the self esteem of fat kids," we're saying "Do everything you're going to do about health, nutrition,and fitness, but make it for all kids, fat or thin, and don't single out the fat kids and make them feel like they are 'bad' for feeling fat." Because some thin kids need the exact same information that fat kids, and fat kids don't need the extra layer of shame that goes along with feeling they are the only ones who have 'bad' bodies. In the end, if the initiative is all about behaviors and practices, focus on that only, and leave the body judgements out of it.exactly. i hope those issues get brought up. how do we make it safe for children to play and for parents to be able to afford the healthy food thier children need? how do we reinstitute PE and recess that has been cut out of way too many schools? how do we get unhealthy junk food out of the cafeteria? i don't feel its right for us to create situtations where children thin or fat can do nothing else but grow unhealthy just because the rest of us have some point to prove about being fat as an adult. the children aren't responsible for our fight --we are. so no mattter whether the child is fat or not adults should do thier best to provide a healthy environment in terms of exercise and healthy food. basing our decision on the bullying or abuse we may have gone through as children is not enough of a reason to neglect the health of the young. if we're really worried it might be better to remind the people involved now of the mental issues so that they don't mentally abuse children like fat adults may have been as children.
when i was a kid i never thought of myself in terms of obesity. i was just a fat kid who did everything else everyone else did. but i think i would really have felt like a total outsider if i hadn't been healthy. unfortunately i think thats where many fat children are rigth now. i see a whole lot fewer fat kids who are healthy than when i was young. i had fat friends and we used to run around and do PE etc... gasping but we could do it hehe. and we actually enjoyed ourselves. but right now fat children seem a whole lot weaker because there are a whole lot more reasons to remain inactive. when i was young it was the healthy food that was cheap. now its the other way around. i think all of that is making them suffer a whole lot more than a lot of us did growing up. keeping them in a situtation where they are bound to feel bad emotionally and physically just because we might have something to prove would be a mistake and a bit selfish.
i think we need to be really careful about thinking about the reasons we are against the initiative. is it really bad for the children? would we have wanted someone to at least try to help in an environment such as we have now thats a little more enlightened? are we really just looking for some justification for being fat ourselves and thinking we can't change and applying that to other people? what point would there be in being fat if you didn't actually want to be fat? whats wrong with children losing weight who might really want to be thin? its not enough to say i'm fat and i don't like it so you should be fat too. i'm not sure i believe the "i'm against it because people will be emotionally abusive toward these fat children" argument. we already know they face discrimmination already anyway. wouldn't it be better for them to have the adults be responsible for a change instead of having them berate children for things beyond thier control all of the time?
If that happened, more kids who need extra help, fat or thin, would get it, and nobody would have to worry about fat kids getting a knock to their mental health because they weigh more than their peers. I was just reading some statistics yesterday about the ways fat kids are treated in our schools, and it is appalling, they get bullied and ignored by students and staff, even without 'obesity' initiatives that will single them out for negative attention even more.
Believe me, my objection isn't about needing to justify my own fat adult body. It is about speaking up for fat kids like me who didn't have a voice to say that their judgements, and their treatment of me, was damaging and wrong. I say this as someone who was singled out as a young teen and made to go to meetings with all the other fat kids in my school to learn how to lose weight. If that is any indication, these plans won't work too well. The 'star pupil' ended up getting WLS as an adult, fwiw.