Monday, January 10, 2011

Child Abuse?

So, I was watching The View (no gay jokes) and they were interviewing a young girl who had just lost 90lbs. Years earlier, her parents pulled her out of school because she was being teased for being overweight. They home-schooled her, bought her fast food three times a day, and let her lay around without getting any excercise. Predictably, her weight ballooned to over 250 pounds. To me, this sounds like child abuse. Allowing and enabling your child, who looks to you for guidance and direction, to eat fast food and gain enormous amounts of weight thereby putting their health and happiness in jeopardy is every bit as destructive and negligent as allowing your child to drink alcohol, have sex, and use drugs. In fact, since these parents were buying her fast food, it is, in my mind, the equivalent of giving your child alcohol, drugs, and providing them with sexual partners.

Am I being too judgmental? When I see overweight parents at the grocery store buying sugary cereals, pastries, and fatty fried foods for their overweight kids am I wrong for thinking that they ought to know better? Having presumably grown up overweight themselves, why would they condemn their children to the same fate? Aren't we, as parents, supposed to try to give our kids a better life than we had? If you were teased as a child for being obese and still have emotional scars as a result, why would you want your kids to experience the same pain? If you are now experiencing the health issues associated with a lifetime of obesity, why would you pass those same health issues on to your children?

I think this is abusive neglectful behavior. I see no difference between feeding greasy fast food to kids genetically predisposed to obesity and sharing a beer or a hit of cocaine with kids genetically predisposed to substance abuse. Do not pass your disease onto your children! It is your job as parents to protect them.

Soap box abandoned.