Let's Talk About Our Moms and Our Body Issues

Source: http://greatist.com/live/body-image-issues-related-to-mothers?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=feed_http–greatistcom-

I have a history of binge eating disorder and have become an advocate for issues around disordered eating and body image, so I talk about this stuff a lot with my friends and colleagues. And every single time I talk to a friend, fellow body activist, or eating disorder advocate about our own stories of weight and food issues, the conversation always gets around to the topic of our moms. “Well, when I was 14, my mom told me I was getting big thighs…” or “My mom never let us have seconds because she said she didn’t want us to get fat…” or “My mom was constantly on a diet. I learned that that was the normal way to live.”

While our parents are not to blame for directly causing body image difficulties and eating disorders—there are a ton of factors, from societal norms and genetics to traumatic experiences and neurochemistry—research does show that what parents do and say can increase or decrease the risk that someone will end up eating disordered.

In one recent example, psychology researcher Jerica Berge, Ph.D., from the University of Minnesota, followed thousands of parents and their teenage kids and found that teens whose parents talked to them about food with a focus on their weight or size (e.g., “Don’t eat that—you’ll get fat!” or “Yikes, that’s super fattening”) were more likely to fall into body hate, extreme dieting, and eating disorders. People whose parents didn’t talk about size or weight, but just focused on …

What do you think?