Okay, so life’s not fair, I get that. The family that just won the huge Powerball because the woman saw the winning numbers in a dream? Not fair. I should have had that dream. But I didn’t, and they seem like a really nice family, and good for them, but still life isn’t fair.
I have a novel about to be released, “The Weight Of It All,” and there is a character people might think is a bit mean. She sees an obese woman and her obese daughter shopping and she goes on a bit of a rampage (in her head, to herself, she’s not insane, just not very nice) about how it’s one thing for the mom to be fat but the kid is a victim of her mom’s bad habits and lifestyle. She thinks it’s really not fair to the kid, and that it is a form of child abuse. Okay so she’s an over the top kind of character, but when I think about it, maybe she’s right.
As parents, we have a responsibility to our children to love and care for them to the best of our abilities. An obese child is obese because the home environment is unhealthy. There really can be no other explanation. Oh, I’m sure there are exceptions to the rule, kids who sneak food, kids who have health-conscious parents who find a way to overeat, but for the most part, when it comes to being overweight, children are a reflection of their environment, and it’s simply not fair.
There was the case of the British parents being prosecuted for their eleven-year-old son weighing in at 210 pounds. The child was five-feet, one-inch tall, so 210 pounds was a bit on the big side. The parents blamed genetics, said they were big, so he was destined to be big, too, that he loves broccoli (I imagine covered in a rich creamy cheese sauce) and they encourage him to exercise and eat well. A third-grader in Ohio was taken from his mom when he tipped the scales at 218 pounds. Social workers had worked with the mother for a year before removing him from the home. The mom’s lawyers claimed his health was in no immediate danger, and the state had no legitimate reason to take him away-did I mention social workers had been trying to work with the mom for a year? She did say it was a lifestyle change and it was hard…yeah, I guess so, because the kid weighed in at 218 pounds, so I guess not a lot of change was happening in that household. Maybe she’d gone from regular potato chips to baked, or gallons of low-fat ice cream, as opposed to the full-fat variety?
I guess it is extreme to take a child from his or her home because of a number on the scale, but then again, is it? If the kid were being beaten, or starved, surely the child would be taken away for the safety and well being of the child…why is starving a child seen as child abuse, torture, really, but letting a child become morbidly obese is, well, in a lot of people’s minds, okay? It’s not okay. It’s cruel and neglectful parenting. I’m not talking about a pudgy kid, a chubby kid, I’m talking about an obese, morbidly obese, life-threateningly obese child, and parents need to be held accountable.
So maybe, my character isn’t mean, maybe she’s just, right…