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Should I talk to DD about her weight or just keep schtum ?

(146 Posts)
suzied Thu 21-Jan-16 08:21:03

Over the last couple of years my youngest DD has put on a considerable amount of weight and this seems to be continuing, she would definitely be classed as obese. I am really concerned about her health and happiness. The question is, should I ask her directly about this along the lines of does she need help, is she happy with her weight, how about dieting etc. I don't want to appear interfering or critical, so should I just take the line that's she's a grown up and it's her life and let her get on with it and keep quiet. She has a pretty tough job and is well regarded at work, has just had a big promotion. She has a (very skinny) long term BF , who is very caring. She was hit very hard by her young cousin's death a couple of years ago as they were very close, which sort of goes along with the extra eating, although she's always been on the chubby side. I don't want to upset her which if I draw attention to her weight I am sure I will, but I sort of think as a mum I should face up to difficult/ sensitive issues in order to support her. What would others do in this situation?

PRINTMISS Thu 21-Jan-16 08:29:04

My daughter is also on the verge of obese, but perfectly formed, if you know what I mean. She is a vegetarian, and does not indulge in what one would term fancy fattening food. Her husband is quite thin - although middle age is catching up with him. Both their children are like rakes! I have kept quiet about my daughter's weight and size. She is happy, eats sensibly and knows the danger of being over-weight, is probably concious of the fact that she is FAT, and doesn't need me to tell her so.

ffinnochio Thu 21-Jan-16 08:40:40

I wouldn't start a chat with your daughter about her weight, but would consider having a gentle chat occasionally about her hopes and wishes. This way you'll hopefully be able to determine if she has concerns about her health and happiness, which may help her to start a discussion with you about her weight. Let her take the lead. Her body, her choice,.

Hope you find a way to ease your concerns susied

NanaandGrampy Thu 21-Jan-16 08:45:38

As someone who has struggled with their weight all my life I think this is a rock and a hard place situation.

Over the years if someone talked to me about my weight and I wasn't in a receptive mood it sent me diving back into the biscuit tin !! However nicely you phrase it, however gentle you are it sounds like criticism and that's not a good place to start from .

I wonder if you can talk about your weight to her - of course that won't work if you're slender but if you could lose a few pounds , maybe you could say how you feel and ask her advice? Maybe she would say she would join you in some weight loss activities.

Or maybe just talk to her about you wanting to be a bit healthier, and ask if she would help you by joining you - maybe some exercise together or joining WW or SW?

glammanana Thu 21-Jan-16 08:52:54

susied Its such a delicate subject isn't it and I know where you are coming from.DD put on a lot of weight when her husband left her with a huge financial mess and moved out leaving her with 4 DCs at home,so really she was comfort eating to try and forget everything that was going on,I asked her if she fancied joining SW with me to get her out and meet new people and it worked very well as she is now back to her normal weight and looks very good for it I continued going with her until she met new friends at the group and she now goes under her own steam every week for a couple of hours.

annsixty Thu 21-Jan-16 08:55:44

In a word no.

Luckygirl Thu 21-Jan-16 08:57:47

It is a sensitive situation - my DD is still much larger than her usual self 8 months after giving birth. And, as she was always a chubbier lass than her siblings, I think that she might be at risk of putting on more weight to an unhealthy degree. She is still feeding the babe and is very hungry all the time. She is sporty and will I hope lose the fat when she has stopped feeding and got back to some sports activities. Meantime I button the lip, as I think that drawing attention to it might make her sad.

I personally think that this is the line you should take with your DD. She is an intelligent woman by the sounds of it, and will be very aware of the situation herself.

But you may find a suitable moment if the subject of eating healthily or weight comes up anyway.

Good luck with this.

downtoearth Thu 21-Jan-16 09:23:21

I have the same problem with E,she also comfort eats and has recognised she is an emotional eater at nearly 17 ,since DD died she has always done this,we eat a balanced diet,she is fairly active walks a lot,her mixed race heritage plays a part in her shape,I leave slimming world magazine around for her to skim through and fruit etc to munch on,but have no control what she buys when she is out,I too am loahe to tackle this as well as her emotional issues....hard isnt it sad I am careful with my own wait although "cuddly" at around a shapely 12 stone...OH Is like a whippet can eat and drink what he likes.

downtoearth Thu 21-Jan-16 09:25:00

weight grr and loathe where are you spellcheck grin

Gagagran Thu 21-Jan-16 09:35:23

I would hesitate to say anything at all. Speaking as a "person of size" I am well aware that I could do with losing weight and do not need or want anyone else to tell me that. I am sure your daughter will be the same. Just love her as she is and if she broaches it, well that's a whole new ball game and then you could, very gently agree that maybe she could consider doing something about it. It's dancing on egg shells though!

WilmaKnickersfit Thu 21-Jan-16 09:45:35

Unless you're willing to ask her to join a slimming class with you on the basis of supporting each other, don't mention it before she does. And even then, she doesn't need you to tell her that her weight worries you and why. There's no way she is not already aware of her weight. All you will do is make her feel worse about herself. I had to ask my Mum to stop talking about my weight. I know I have a problem.

She doesn't need your disapproval because no matter how you phrase it, that's what she will feel. You will only make things worse. You know that already though, don't you? smile

Tell her when she looks nice, boost her confidence. Be supportive by continuing to show her how much you love her, not by judging her.

seacliff Thu 21-Jan-16 10:01:46

As a large person myself, I wouldn't say anything about her weight, unless you too really need to shed some.

I'd just make sure she knows how much you love and admire her, and that she knows how proud you are of her success at work etc. Occasional compliments on her hair/looks/ pretty eyes etc might also boost her morale.

Just a suggestion, not sure if her cousin sadly died from an accident or illness. I just wonder if you could suggest a joint venture, such as a fun walk/run to raise money for charity for a cause close to her heart, then you could both train, and be doing it in her cousins name? Good luck x

suzied Thu 21-Jan-16 10:20:23

Yes I guess it is insensitive to talk to her about her weight as she must be aware of it, but shows no incentive to do anything about it, which is why I posed the question. I am slim, though her Dad needs to loose a bit of weight, can't see him going to weight watchers though! I could try to get her along to something like aqua aerobics which is good for all sizes, plus you can't see how big people are in the water! Though as she works long hours it's difficult to find a class at a time which suits. We do compliment her when she has made an effort with her hair or clothes, and are really pleased with her work success and she has just got on the property ladder so we are helping her renovate her flat, so will try to concentrate on the positives. Training for a walk is a good idea, will see how I can fit that in. I will just worry in silence!

Lona Thu 21-Jan-16 10:53:48

The will power to lose weight has to come from within, so no doubt your dd will get to grips with it when she's ready.
I think you are doing all the right things already, so just keep on helping and encouraging her.
My DD put a lot of weight on during an unhappy period, but now she's happier and more in control, the weight is coming off slowly.

Synonymous Thu 21-Jan-16 11:14:13

Absolutely keep schtum! Just love her and help to keep her happy. smile The sponsored walk sounds a good idea if you can find a cause which you can both enthusiastically support but ensure that you ask her to do it with you because you really couldn't do it on your own. Perhaps even make it a whole family thing?

Riverwalk Thu 21-Jan-16 11:28:01

My first reaction was that you should keep quiet, particularly as you're slim, but you could attempt to bring up the subject of 'fitness' somehow e.g. the sponsored walk.

After all, I think many of us would say something to a daughter who was drinking or smoking to excess, and obesity is just as harmful to her heath and well-being.

Elegran Thu 21-Jan-16 11:28:11

Does she eat at yours sometimes/often ? When she is there, make something absolutely delicious but guaranteed not to add weight (there are threads on here on losing weight, and an internet search will turn up lots of recipes) When she praises it, give her the recipe - which has the number of calories on it.

Mothers have to be devious. We probably also have more time to find and try slimming recipes that are not all lettuce leaves.

LullyDully Thu 21-Jan-16 11:34:56

I agree it is best to keep quiet. There is nothing worse than your nearest and dearest stating the obvious which you are struggling with.

Idea of going to a class together and inviting her on the off chance is a good idea. Then you are the one in need, not her.

Tegan Thu 21-Jan-16 12:00:35

Could you not say you were going on a post Christmas health kick and talk about it a lot; I find that if I look on 'diet' as a healthy 'diet' rather than a 'diet to lose weight' it doesn't seem as daunting or restrictive. I'll never forget my MIL[ who had just found out that she had heart disease] having a go at her daughter in front of me one day; she just burst into tears and ran upstairs, so she was obviously aware of being overweight [wasn't right of MIL to say it while I was there as I was stick thin back then].

Katek Thu 21-Jan-16 12:22:01

I have the opposite problem in that DS has sub clinical anorexia. His bmi is still within the healthy range....just, but he does need to put on some weight. He lost between 6 and 7 stone (had been a rugby prop forward) after doc said he needed to lower blood pressure and then found he couldn't stop. He's now stabilised and has reintroduced bread/pasta/potatoes but will eat no salt, cheese, puddings. He has to run 3x per week as well or he becomes anxious. His weight has crept up half a stone which is a def improvement and dil says that she's no longer concerned he's damaging his health although he still has a way to go. He won't talk to me about it other than one word answers to direct questions, but speaks more to his older sisters and DH. As long as he's talking to someone I'm happy and there are def improvements. They had a very stressful 18 months with two babies in quick succession, dil going back to work, a house move and new job for ds. We're all hoping that now his life is settling down he won't feel so compelled to control his eating.

Anya Thu 21-Jan-16 12:42:58

I'd say nothing directly. But if the opportunity presents itself, perhaps if she puts on a flattering outfit, say something like 'you look especially nice, it's very flattering or have you lost a bit of weight?'

Or something in that line perhaps .........

Nonnie1 Thu 21-Jan-16 13:40:18

If it were my daughter and I was in this situation, I would talk about my weight as opposed to hers and mention symptoms of Diabetes and say how awful if I were to get it.

There are ways of showing your concern without actually referring to the person in question.

She will know she is overweight anyway.

You could even say you have been to see the doctor and that they say you need to lose few lbs etc etc..

elena Thu 21-Jan-16 14:44:18

As ever, think about what you want to achieve in raising this make her aware she is overweight??? She will know that already. To let her know it is noticeable?? Ditto.

You risk upsetting her and souring your relationship if you broach it, surely?

So unless she brings the topic up, asking for support, I think you should say nothing.

Synonymous Thu 21-Jan-16 16:29:50

Please don't say you have been to the doctor etc unless you have! Never a good idea to tell 'porkies' as you are bound to get found out and then the fat is really in the fire. shock

suzied Thu 21-Jan-16 16:41:11

Elena, I guess I was only thinking of bringing it up with her in the hope I might help motivate her to do something about it, but I suppose this has to come from her, I don't want to be seen as an interfering mother, so keeping schtum seems to be the best policy.