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I recently returned from a wonderful visit with my mom in Atlanta, to celebrate her 95th birthday. Now if this is not a case of someone benefiting from living right and healthily, I don’t know one! But then, it might just be her German-heritage stubbornness that keeps her motivating forward resolutely. Whatever it is, I’ll take it and hope for many more years to share good times and memories with her as we both age.
However, I did come up with a burning question that I would like to put to Dr. Oz, the doctor of Oprah Show fame now with his own tv show. He recently echoed a question I raised in my waist training book, and that is, how to deal with moms who force food on us in a most unhealthy way, and possibly re-educate them to express love in another way.
When I asked my mom for a reason that she and many moms offer us cookies, cakes, potato chips and other fatty and sugary foods, and seem to force seconds and thirds on us at the dinner table, rather than laying out celery and carrot sticks, and serving small portions once, her only answer was that “that is what moms do.”
I followed up with a question about why moms who love children, would choose to show love by putting this kind of temptation in front of their children– children who might already be overweight and on the way to obesity and ill health. My mom had no answer.
Then I tried a possible answer on her to see if it held water. Did moms do this intentionally trying to increase temptation because they wanted to strengthen the resolve and test the logic of their children, to see if their children would resist and refuse, and then ask mom for a healthier option? No, that was not it either.
Of course I referenced the national, even international obesity epidemic. Mom agreed that there was one. But she refused to see that her approach at showing love added to the problem rather than help resolve it. She opined that it was our responsibility to resist and not get fat in the first place!
Needless to say this frustrating conversation terminated with neither of us fully understanding the position of the other and with no satisfactory answer or response from her to my question and concern.
Thus, I am left to conclude that as adults we must act responsibly and employ ultimate logic to resist our mom’s unhealthy temptations and unwise expressions of parental “love”, understanding those expressions for what they are. We need not stuff our faces with mom’s version of love. It takes will power, and politely declining seconds or an unhealthy snack might be misinterpreted by our mom, but we can gently assure her that it is not rejection of her love at all.
In the end, it is our ‘end’ that we must take care of to protect and nurture, even when mom doesn’t go about it the right way.
Do you have any ways to address this temptation at your home? I’d be interested to hear your thoughts! (www.romantasy.com)