Mom of 3 Girls Bans the Word 'Fat' From Her House (VIDEO)

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One mother was shocked -- shocked! -- when her daughter came home and announced, "Mommy, I can't drink soda because it gives you a fat tummy" -- something she'd heard from her camp counselor. Instead of agreeing (and possibly adding that it rots your teeth too), uber-mom of three young daughters, author and blogger Stefanie Wilder-Taylor, chose to bury deep into the denial of reality by banning the word "fat" in her household and asking her friends and people around her daughters not to discuss their weight issues in front of them.

"I was horrified," says Stefanie at the thought of her youngin' hearing the F word. "They are too young to be thinking about dieting or whether they're fat or thin." Correct me if I'm wrong, but a young child saying she can't drink a soda isn't exactly "dieting." Stefanie had a chance to break her kid of a soda habit -- one that could become lifelong and debilitating -- and chose not to.

But beyond that, Stefanie could have used this incident as a "teachable moment." Instead of banning the word fat and running around demanding that your friends not discuss their weight in front of your kids -- how about talking to your kids realistically about weight, health, and diet?

After all, no matter how diligently Stefanie blogs, someone, somewhere, is going to let the F word slip in front of her kids. Sorry, mommy, you can't control the world. Though you wouldn't be the first mom who tried to erase the word "fat" from the planet.

And, yes, it's quite possible that when her daughters are still very young, they will hear classmates talking about their weight and dieting. They may even utter the dreaded F word. Perhaps Stefanie plans on hiding out under her daughters' school desk and spying on all of their conversations to keep this from happening, but I'd say the more sane approach would be to talk frankly with your kids about these things.

How about something like, "Well, dear, one soda will not make you fat, but soda isn't very healthy and if you have too much of it, that could be the outcome. In fact, everything in moderation is a good life lesson. So if you want the soda, that's fine, but let's go play outside after you drink it."

I know. CRAZY.

In fact, banning of the word "fat" might even encourage the kids to become obsessed with weight. Like my childhood friend, who wasn't allowed to watch TV at home. Whenever she'd come over, all she'd want to do was watch TV. Play outside? Nope. TV had become the forbidden fruit she was determined to pig out on before returning to her Bugs Bunny-free house.

Trying to block out the world -- which contains a lot of less-than-ideal words, terms, and actual happenings -- never works. The world is too big.

So, instead, think about arming your kids with information to try and tackle the world and make their own choices.

Do you think words should be banned around kids?


Image via Good Morning America

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nonmember avatar Kelly

I have turned the words fat, ugly, stupid into curse words at my home. My daughter is not allowed to say them. We focus on being healthy and staying positive. I do not see this as being an "uber-mom" or controlling the world. I do not let her use it to describe herself or others. It is plainly about manners! I cannot believe you have not banned words in your home. Do your children run around yelling the F-word? I doubt it.

nonmember avatar Angie

I completely agree with the above comment. I have four daughters, and have banned the words "fat" and "stupid" from our home. These words are derogatory and insulting and there are more important things for my children to talk about. I understand where the author is coming from in using this as a "teachable moment," but let's get real: your child is going to tune out a lengthy explanation about soda in moderation and then working it off by playing outside. Soda is unnecessary for children anyway. Just say, "we don't drink soda because it is bad for our bodies, and we don't say the word fat because it is bad for our minds." My four year old understands this, your children should, too.

nonmember avatar Lucy

I pretty much agree with the Mom. I feel fat all the time but I never talk about it or get weighed in front of my girls. My parents were always focused on what they weighed, whined about how fat they were, everything was about food food food, and I grew up always feeling like a fat ass even though when I look at pictures from high school, when I felt the fattest, I was actually tiny. I wish they hadn't focused on it so much. Now when they visit it's the same thing, my dad goes on and on about whatever diet he's on, how fat he is, and I just want to scream at him to shut up with that nonsense around my kids.

Choco... Chocodoxies

We have banned the words "fat", "stupid", and "diet" from our home. We do not call people, ourselves included, fat. It is demeaning and does nothing to improve an unhealthy situation but introduce unhealthy thoughts into our minds.  We are not "stupid" in this home. My children, my husband, and myself are all quite intelligent, so there is never a use for such a cruel term.  We do not "diet" in this home. Diets don't work. We eat healthy, everyday, and not just because we want to lose weight. We are active and keep our minds and bodies working. We have fruits and vegetables at every meal and when we are in the mood, we indulge in a treat without the guilt that the word "fat" induces. I have thyroid disease that I've had to fight since my teen years and it has taught me that there are far more important things in life, like health and kindness, than being "skinny" (sometimes an equally offensive term).  The focus should be on health (mental and physical) and not looks.

By the way, I loved this: "we don't drink soda because it is bad for our bodies, and we don't say the word fat because it is bad for our minds."

Caera Caera


And this mom is absolutely correct, especially if her children are of normal weight.

p31lady p31lady

I think banning the word fat is overkill.  Instead of saying "We never that word in this house", just take the time to explain healthy eating habits.

Rikki Schultz

I think she is probably just concerned that her daughter will worry too much about her weight and she is right to be concerned.. There are millions of little boys and girls out there with eating disorders who probably could have been helped if their parents had noticed it ahead of time and taken action! You might think it is stupid to ban the word "fat" but so what? She isn't your kid. So it isn't your call.

Annette Aucoin Holliday

my husband and i posted a list in the house of not nice words to use. hate, stupid, idiot, fat, shut-up. when the girls were small they really paid attention to it and it has stuck. 

nonmember avatar EHiggins

Well that's just stupid (omg! I said "stupid". Yes, I did!) You'd think an author would have a plethora of words to explain to her child WHY soda is bad, and not just cuz "it makes you fat".

Growing up, the only words banned in my house were actual swear words and the word "depressed"; my mother doesn't believe in anything dealing with psychiatry, so me and my siblings weren't allowed to talk about our "issues", cuz, according to my mother, "nobody cares about your problems".

Cassie Barker

we don't talk about "dieting" in our home but we do talk about being healthy and making healthy chooses. The world has so many fast food options that make us unhealthy because sometimes and maybe more then most we opt out of cooking when we get home late or just sick or tired that we run through the drive through or grab a pizza more often then we should. it does cause more health problems in some then others but we should teach our children that fast food or "JUNK" Food is ok in moderation, but making better or good chooses will help us stay healthy and not have to worry about being fat or unhealthy when were older. that also includes not have as many health problems or diabetes 2

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