Hey!...I'm not sure what you can do to help her..except make healthy food at home...
Especially since she's defensive and an adult...it's not something you can "sit down and talk about"...she's gonna think everyone is against her...
My mother and I don't get along at all....I'm a 21 yr old..and i'll tell u some advice on WHAT NOT TO DO with your daughters situation:
1. Don't yell at her
2. Don't compare her to her skinny friends
3. Don't buy her clothes...she'll feel like ur indirectly attacking her about her weight
4. Don't nag her about her weight and go on forever bout it...if u tell her once..she'll get the point...
My dad is very subtle about telling me to lose weight...and he does it in a good way:
1. One time I put ALOT of sugar in my coffee...and he told me not to...only because that much sugar can lead to diabetes...
A few things I would recommend:
1. You can't do anything about it anymore....it's something she has to decide to change for herself...you can't talk to her about it..because it would make her grow further apart form you (that's what happened with my mom n me)
2. Be the change you wish to see in the world. I'm not sure how your diet is or anything...but be an example of how you want your daughter to live...talk the talk only when you can walk the walk...
3. I would do very subtle things...like watch Biggest Loser together...(that show is motivating for ANYONE that is overweight)....or mention how junk food makes YOU feel...not attack her bout her eating junk food...
4. When it comes to family activities or whatever....do something outdoors...
like if your going to an Amusement park or the fair...then (without her even knowing)..walk a few more circles around the park without even tellin her..most likely she wont even notice that she was walking that long...
There are so many things you can do without even letting her know...
the main thing is....to talk to her like you love her..whether she was fat or skinny...how would u talk to her?...
don't let her weight be a conversation topic..that would kill her inside...
Believe the answer above is most likely the truth of the situation ... your daughter must recognize and want to change the situation in order receive the assistance she needs.
I always found supportive cooking a great motivator .. like getting a lower calorie cookbook and selecting recipes together and perhaps asking her .. I'm trying to decide between chicken or beef or lasagna .. here's the 3 recipes (Pages tagged) ... what do you think?
Totally agree you should talk about you and not her .. always let her know you love her and not talk of her size. It can be devastating.
You can post some things that help YOU ... on the refrigerator .. but explain it is for YOU! She'll get curious and read it. Print something off MedHelp .. try my before and after picture .. along with my favorite Mandela quote ... "Our worst fear is not that we are inadequate, our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, “Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented and fabulous?” Actually, who are you not to be?"
or .. my very favorite poem that helped me make positive choices ...
ONE evening, and old Cherokee told his grandson about the eternal battle that goes on inside people.
He said, “My boy, the battle is between two wolves inside us all.”
“One is Evil. It is anger, envy, jealousy, sorrow, regret, greed, arrogance, self-pity, guilt, resentment, inferiority, lies, false pride, superiority and ego.”
“The other is Good. It is joy, peace, love, hope, serenity, humility, kindness, benevolence, empathy, tolerance, generosity, truth, compassion and faith.”
The boy thought about it for a minute and then asked his grandfather, “Which wolf wins?”
The old Cherokee replied, “The one you feed.”
You can even print out your Food Diary and put on the side of the refrigerator .. along with your exercise and weight tracker information.
Tell her when you go to the park and see if she'd like to go with you and walk and talk .. or play frisbee ... or ask her what she'd like to do for "fun" ... like paddle boating ... and then go do it with her ... without any mention of weight and only positive thoughts .. like .. it is so nice to have you and I love us doing things together.
Of course, if she's ever interested .. we're all here to provide her with love and support.
Very best wishes .. we all have to walk our own paths ... but those we meet on that path can change our lives.
Oh .. and posting daily positive thoughts help too .. we'll be doing that in the community very soon.
Thanks for the question and please stay involved yourself .. there is much to learn and share here.
I agree that there's not much you can do since she's an adult and you can't hardly "force" her to change anything.
She will have to come to a point, where she WANTS to lose weight for herself, whether it be for health reasons or to raise her self-esteem.
I also agree that it will do no good to chide her about her weight; that will only make matters worse and she may eventually come to resent you for making her feel even worse than she might already feel about it.
Ranae's idea of doing things for yourself, whether it be healthy eating, exercise, etc may be enough to "nudge" her into getting started with a weight loss plan. I'd be sure to ease into it gradually though.
Good luck and hope you'll stay with us.
I am the father of my only child 24 year old daughter, my lovely and beautiful daughter who graduated from one of the top Ivy League universities and got her master's degree recently, I love her so much and I never stop to express to her, to our family member and friends (including my golf buddies) that how proud I am, and I encouraged her and supported her all the way from under graduate school to now she successfully received her master's degree with honor. Academically, she is the dream of all parents; she will have a bright future to purse her career. However, physically she somehow developed into certain degree of obesity at least about 30-40 Lbs over starting from her sophomore year in the college. As she was quite resented any slight suggestion even with minor mentioning about “size, body”, I have been watching over my mouth very carefully, particularly after she started her graduate school when I even thought about it, it became a sensitive taboo subject between us as I know how easily it can offend her. From deep of my heart, I know we love each other so much as father and daughter relationship. I have several concerns: 1, it is about the health issue as more weight she puts on it can easily develop into other health issue for a young lady like her, 2, it may somehow prevent her to get better employment as certain “image sensitive” employers (she is in the process of getting active interviews with several big international firms suitable for her study and profession now)? 3, I don’t think she has a steady boy friend so far (not like when she was in the high school – a very serious boy friend relationship as the most parents may have experienced), besides the point she has been very preoccupied with her graduate school, on the other hand, I just suspect that she may have certain low esteem in dealing with a relationship? Having all said, I was thinking to seek a professional consultant till I found this forum. I am very impressed the suggestions and opinions listed here, not to mention we all share some degree of the same experience with our daughter. For all the best, I will be grateful to get your thoughts. l
I've been trying to figure out how best to answer your questions and I'm still not absolutely certain, but maybe we can work through it together.
As was noted above, when an adult doesn't want to lose weight, there really isn't a whole lot anyone can do to force them into to it.
All of the points you made about weight causing health issues, possibly preventing her from getting the job or man of her dreams are valid. I can even add one more... if she were to get the man of her dreams, her weight can prevent her from getting pregnant and having the family of her dreams.
Now, I'm going to ask some questions, so please bear with me, because they could all have some relevance.
Does your daughter "mind" her weight? Does she indicate in any way, that she wants to lose weight or that she's uncomfortable with her weight or does she seem to be happy with it? If she's happy with herself and has all the self confidence she needs to make it in this world, there isn't going to be much you can do, unless you can figure out a way to work in conversations about your own health and ways to make it better, particularly if you could stand to lose some weight, yourself; or if you need to get more exercise or whatever the case may be, and see if she'd be willing to join you.
Does she live with you and eat at your table? Do you provide her food and cook her meals? If you provide the food and cook the meals, set the example and provide and cook healthy wholesome food, in portions that will allow her to lose weight and she may be so busy with life that she may not even realize what's happening - you can always hope. You can tell her that YOU need to eat healthier, so this is the food you are providing and cooking, from now on.
You can try to get her to go on walks with you or whatever activities the 2 of you might enjoy together.
Last, but certainly, not least... Is it possible that your daughter has a medical issue that could cause weight gain/inability to lose weight? There are several, but the most obvious that comes to mind is hypothyroidism. The thyroid gland controls metabolism, heart rate, digestion, body temperature and other bodily functions. When the thyroid doesn't work properly, metabolism is sluggish and weight can pile on, literally, overnight. A hypothyroid person is often cold when others aren't; they're often fatigued, constipated, with dry skin, hair loss, etc. Some simple blood tests can confirm/rule out a malfunctioning thyroid. The tests she needs are TSH, Free T3 and Free T4.
There are some other conditions that can also cause weight gain/inability to lose that includes insulin resistance and PCOS (Polycystic Ovary Syndrome). You could tell her that you read an article about these things and how common they are in young women (hypothyroidism, insulin resistance and PCOS really are common).
I'd recommend that you find a way to get her in for a complete physical - maybe you could suggest that she's looking tired lately and it's time for a check up. Once she's in the doctor's office you can bet your boots the doctor is going to talk to her about her weight!!!
I'm going through this now. My daughter was never a small girl but when she lived home and she struggled with her weight I would take her to the doctor, we joined weight watchers together, etc. Also in high school she was very athletic. She went to college and developed bad eating habits and I'm sure a lot of partying. She put on a lot of weight then. Now she is 23. She's a teacher and works long hrs. She moved out of our house about year ago and now lives closer to her work. I was hoping this would help with her quality of life so she would have more time to exercise and take care of herself. She lives about an hr away from us so we see her about once a month. Every time I see her, she looks like she gained even more weight. She seems to always wear jogging pants and a big shirt. I can't say anything but I'm sure my expression speaks for itself. She'll even ask me why am I glaring at her. She wears no make up and doesn't take pride in her appearance like she use to. She is such a pretty young woman too. She has a serious boyfriend so I'm not sure she's just comfortable with the relationship or something isn't right. For Christmas I gave her a membership for yoga classes which she asked for. She never goes because of her long work hrs. Sometimes I wish her and her boyfriend would break up because I know she would get back into shape and take pride in her appearance. I've spoken to a therapist and she told me not to say anything and not to dwell on it. I get obsessed about it because she's my only child and I hate to see her like this. I don't like the person she's become and all I can do now is pray for her. I have to prepare myself when I see her so I don't react to her appearance. I just want her to be healthy, safe and happy. All I can do is continue to pray for her and me too!
I'm sorry to hear about this... I would agree with the therapist that it's not good to dwell on this.
Perhaps you could just ask your daughter if she's feeling okay, since there are medical conditions, such as hypothyroidism and/or insulin resistance that can cause weight gain/inability to lose Your daughter works long hours, so stress/high cortisol is another. High cortisol levels also affect thyroid hormone levels.
There are also medications that cause weight gain, so perhaps she's on one of those?
The problem is that by saying anything to her about it, you'd run the risk of alienating her. That's not something I'd be willing to risk, so I'd not go beyond asking if she felt okay. When our children become adults, it's hard for us to watch them do things that aren't necessarily good for them, but all too often, there's little we can do. Your daughter will realize, at some point, that she must care for herself, or her health will suffer. Let's hope she gets there sooner rather than later.
thank you for your advice. I agree. she had a physical not to long ago and everything was good. She did start weight watchers shortly after that apt but it hasn't helped much. It's hard not to say anything. I can tell she isn't happy with herself. she use to be a ham and now she doesn't like having her pictures taken, etc. I just pray she gets help and is happy with herself again. she probably has to lose about 60 lbs. I pray that I don't say anything and make her feel bad when I see her. I tend to give her THESE looks. Sometimes I'm ashamed of her appearance that I have to work on myself and my behavior too. It's a work in progress for me.
We always have to be careful of hurting other people's feelings, but it's really not up to us to make anyone else lose weight. When your daughter feels ready, she will do it on her own. When she's ready, be there for her...
There has to be something I/we do or say. My daughter doesn't live at home and I get so upset and anxious when I see her. She's now 24 years old and probably gained about 50 plus lbs. Her legs are so large that her walk is off and so unattractive. I don't say anything but always get angry when I see her and will say something to my husband when we're without her. he supports her and tells me that he sees the things that are important. Gaining that much weight and her health and appearance are important. she's tried a lot of programs but nothing sees to work. I think she doesn't stick with it. she had a physical and she is in good health. this may sound terrible but I don't want to be around her because I get so upset with her. She had a party at our house with friends during the summer and I couldn't believe she wear a bikini. She weighs over 190lbs. I see a therapist and she agrees that I shouldn't say anything but this and I'm not right. THERE HAS TO BE SOMETHING I CAN DO. if you come up with it, please share.
see my comment below. I meant to send this to you.
I really don't know how to work this site. but wanted to let you know I wish I knew what to do. I remember when my daughter gained about 30 lbs and now weighs over 190lbs. she's trying different programs, has gone for a physical and the problem seems to be getting worse. It seems to run in my husband's family. she is built like my sister in laws who just had stomach surgery. the problem is that I think she thinks she looks good and is getting comfortable with her boyfriend. I must sound crazy and obsessed but it is making me anxious and angry. I do talk to a therapist about it and include my husband sometimes because he thinks my thoughts are mean and harsh and the situation is unimportant. I dread family events, parties and get together because I'm always shocked and angry when I see her. I really try to be loving, engaged, but I'm so angry when I leave her. I have a feeling I'll be in therapy for awhile.