Childhood Obesity: I Eat Junk Food While My Kid Diets
Last year our pediatrician told us my oldest daughter was overweight. My husband and I have never struggled with our weight, so we were kind of clueless about how to help her avoid childhood obesity. The doctor suggested getting the whole family onboard with healthy eating
and exercise. So we cleaned all the junk food out of the cupboards (ouch), started drinking water and Crystal Light instead of soda, and took walks and bike rides together. As anyone who has battled weight issues will tell you, it was hard—most of all for our daughter—but soon her weight started dropping. And after about a year, the whole family seemed to be feeling really good about our focus on healthier eating.
Because despite all the progress my daughter has made—and God love her, she is my hero—I haven't adapted quite as well.
Pretty much since day one of our healthy makeover, I've been sneaking treats on the side. I hide Oreos on the top shelf and pints of Ben & Jerry's New York Super Fudge Chunk behind the frozen peas. I have Cadbury bars in my nightstand drawer and I stop for the big bag of Swedish Fish and two bottles of Snapple on my way home from the post office. It's like I can't help myself. And even though I try to model healthy eating habits for the kids, in private, I'm weak!
I can come up with any number of reasons why I deserve to have that junk food. I've eaten that way all my life and I'm not overweight. I do more around the house than anyone else. But when it comes down to it, I think I resent the fact that I have to sacrifice the snack foods I've always eaten because she has a weight problem.
Despite the resentment and justifications, I really am afraid of getting caught, because I know if my daughter finds my Oreo stash, she's going to be hurt and will probably even feel betrayed.
But apparently even that isn't enough motivation for me to give up junk food, because every time I reach for a chocolate cupcake, inside I'm saying, "I'm a grown grown-up, damn it, and I can eat what I want!" Is there something wrong with me, risking my daughter's feelings for a fattening fix?