Gabe has started noticing diet and exercise commercials on TV, gods help me. Last night it was during Bugs Bunny--Herbal Magic showing the glorious after photos of a slew of Canadians who had lost 15, 20, 35 pounds! following their use of the plan, and how happy they were now since they'd lost all that weight. Gabe turns and says to me "Mom, if I get fat like you, I'm going to lose 20 pounds using that. I don't want to be fat." Gabe is six, remember.
After I picked my jaw up off the floor I quickly said "It's ok to be fat, Gabe." But he wouldn't let it go. He was stuck on this idea that when he grows up that he'll be fat, maybe because I'm fat? and that he'll have to lose weight. So I asked him point blank "What's wrong with being fat?" and thank the Goddess he couldn't think of anything. I was prepared for some kind of nasty answer, like fat people are gross or lazy, but he thought about it and said "Some people don't want to be fat. I don't." So I guess that's something.
He also likes exercise equipment commercials, saying how he wants to buy X thing and use it so he can build his muscles. Part of me just wants to turn the TV off when this stuff comes on, or change the channel, but I don't because I want to talk about it and challenge the messages he's receiving. As with 'junk food', if I hide it, it makes it more enticing. Instead I try to talk about how his body is still growing and it needs play, good foods and rest in order to grow big and strong. If Ryan's home, we emphasize that it took daddy a long time to grow as big and strong as he is, and that he wasn't always that way, that our bodies change over time, and that ALL BODIES are 'good' bodies, that it takes all shapes and sizes to make the world go round.