Well, a little late on the blogging but as they say “better late than never.” I tend to write about the articles and events that grab me right off the bat and at first this one did not. But as I did something thinking, I realized the value of the article and the fact that the contents involved need to be addressed.
I read an article on the Health Digest website entitled Parents Battle Bulge, Bullying With Overweight and Obese Kids. At the University of Michigan, they have taken the results from a poll taken at Motts Children Hospital. According to this, parents who have overweight children are more concerned about them being bullied rather than their children being obese themselves. Yes folks, you read that correctly. The parents have a greater concern about the bullying factor rather than the overall health of their child. To be honest, I can understand that completely. Bullying should be a strong concern not only with parents but with schools, workplaces and within the community as a whole. Unfortunately, people are more concerned with Steve’s soccer shorts, what President Bush had for dinner and of course, the national election we will be having in November.
I have to say, this bullying over a child’s weight does bother me. All forms of bullying get under my skin but bullying someone over their weight? Many children are chubby because they carry what is known as baby fat. This cannot be helped at all. Some children have a genetic predisposition towards obesity and again, cannot be helped. Yet, because of this sick rite of passage, other kids have to make their lives completely miserable as a result. Why? Because they can. They know where, when and who to bully and they know for the most part, nobody in authority will do anything about it. What ever happened to teaching children some kindness? Manners? To respect others? Has anyone noticed that we are a nation without empathy? If someone does not learn this early in life, they will have greater problems later in life. Yet I hear “kids will be kids” constantly. True, kids are kids but does that mean we forget to teach them to be decent human beings? We live in a world now where the norm is wearing a size 0 in clothes. Everyone strives to be thin. As a result, we have people with eating disorders and other problems. Why is it so important to be thin? Can’t we teach people that its okay to be comfortable in ones own skin?
This article speaks volumes. It says a lot when a parent is more worried about their child’s safety than their own health. The article also suggests that anti-bullying programs add something about obesity in them. Why is this a new revelation? Why are they not already in the programs? Haven’t we been teaching our children all along not to give people a hard time for their weight? Or is this part of the “kids will be kids” mantra? Again, kids will be kids but kids can also be taught empathy and respect. The concept is easy to grasp. It’s a matter of putting it into action.
Resource Cited: http://www.healthnewsdigest.com/news/Family_Health_210/Parents_Battle_Bulge_Bullying_With_Overweight_and_Obese_Kids.shtml
Elizabeth Bennett is the author of Peer Abuse Know More! Bullying From A Psychological Perspective and resides in Los Angeles, California. To learn more, visit http://www.peerabuse.info .