My mom is always telling me to lose weight and I want to cry my eyes out and I don’t know what to do. I do want to lose a little weight, but I don’t think I look that bad, and she always makes me feel horrible. I’ve asked her to stop and we’ve fought about it, and she just won’t let it go. Heather you’re my only hope, please help.
I’m so sorry you’re dealing with this right now. It’s incredibly hard to deal with your own personal body image issues, and it’s even harder to deal when someone close to you is making you feel badly on a regular basis. Your mom isn’t doing the right thing, and frankly, it sucks that she’s making you feel this way.
I’m sure your mother loves you and wants the best for you, but that doesn’t mean she’s right about everything. Just because she’s trying to get you to lose weight doesn’t mean you need to. She has no right to make you feel this way about yourself. I’m guessing that she’s doing it for one of two reasons: one, she wants more control over you, or two, she’s projecting her own body image issues onto you. I’m guessing it’s a mix.
It’s super common for parents to project their own insecurities onto their children. Maybe your mom is really self-conscious about her weight, or maybe she was when she was your age. She might look at you, think of herself, and then take everything out on you. Your mom probably thinks that she’s helping you, to be honest. This doesn’t make what she’s doing right, but it’s important to try to understand why she’s doing it.
The good news is that you CAN learn to love yourself and your body even if your mom can’t stop talking to you about it. The bad news is that no matter what you do or say, she may not change her ways. That’s why you have to learn how to talk to her about this in a constructive way, but you also have to learn how to tune her out and ignore her.
I know you said you’ve talked to her before and that you guys fight about it a lot, but I think you should try to talk to her once more, in the most mature way possible. Instead of getting emotional and fighting, try to explain to her exactly how this makes you feel and ask her to stop. One option is to write her a letter or email. This is a good way to get your feelings out eloquently and make sure she actually hears it since she can’t interrupt you or anything like that. Let her know exactly how much this is hurting you.
Hopefully, your mom will listen to you. But again, there’s a chance that she won’t. In that case, learn how to stop listening to her. Ignore her when she says something. If you can’t walk away, think of something else while she talks and tune her out. I know this is all really hard, and it’s unfair that you might have to do that. But unfortunately, we can’t always change the way people act. We CAN change how we react to it, though. So please don’t listen to her and don’t take her words to heart. Just because your mom has serious body image issues doesn’t mean you have to. And if you’re comfortable with your body, that is ALL that matters. Good luck.
What’s on your mind? Heather can help! Send her your question at firstname.lastname@example.org