Consider This Before You Say “I’m Fat”

Sharon JaynesMotherhood, Power of Words 10 Comments

What will little girls think about their bodies? Their beauty? Their worth? So much depends on us.

One of the most important statement I make in my book, The Power of a Woman’s Words is this: “Our words become the mirrors in which other people see themselves.” That is a daunting thought. 

My niece, Anna, posted about a poignant moment with her eight year old daughter on Facebook, and I just had to share it with you. It’s that important. Grab a cup of coffee and let’s welcome Anna to the table…

Anna’s Post:

I love myself but…I hate my thighs. I do. I also hate my post-baby, three-times-c-sectioned tummy. No matter how many planks, sit-ups or miles I run, it will never be like it was when I was in college.

And that makes me sad, frustrated, and sometimes angry.

When my sweet husband tells me I look beautiful, instead of just thanking him, I answer back with a caveat: “Thanks, but I look fat.”

I do this in front of my kids sometimes without realizing it. My boys always come back with, “No way mom, you look awesome” or “We think you’re beautiful!”

But my daughter, she’s just quiet. Watching. Listening.

Later she’ll come up to me, hug me, and whisper, “I love you so much, mommy.”  

A couple of months ago when she was all dressed up, I saw her looking at herself in the mirror. I stopped and said “Lillian, you look absolutely stunning!” She turned around and said to me, very matter of fact, “No I don’t. I look fat.”

I gasped! Doesn’t she know how precious she is? Doesn’t she know how beautiful she is? What a blessing she is? Doesn’t she know what a miracle her very existence is?

And then I remembered all the times I answered her dad with the very same words.

I was sad, ashamed, and most of all heartbroken. Lillian is 8 years old. She understood that “fat” was how I felt about myself, so she decided she should feel that way too.

Lillian and I had a long talk that day. I told her what a blessing her life is, and how God made her special, unique, and beautiful.

I also apologized to her, my two sons, and my husband for not loving myself like I should.

Lately, I’ve been saying “thank you” when I get compliments–something new to me–and it’s made all the difference.

Now when I tell Lillian how gorgeous she is (which is all of the time) she looks at me with her bright hazel eyes and says, “Thanks mommy! I think you’re really beautiful too!”

After reading Anna’s words, I’m more careful with my words about myself. After all, you never know what little ears are listening, what little eyes are watching, what little minds are processing what they see in the mirror each day.

And don’t forget…you are God’s masterpiece!


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Comments 10

  1. Hi Sharon I feels like that each time I look at my self in the mirror, I say I am fat out of shape who want to wake up to some one like me, I have a muffin top, and I am single 54 yes and I look at my self and feel so discuss at what I see help me

  2. Hi Sharon, I will soon be 49 & have pretty much always been overweight. I have 2 sons which were born through circumcision, then later on I had a partial hysterectomy … which equals being cut 3x in the same spot in my lower tummy. I can relate to Anna. Being a single, divorced mom for the past 12 years, I was definitely down on my body. I was in a 7-year relationship with a guy who could have been a magazine model. I knew that he loved me but I also knew that he wasn’t for me. There were times when he would comment things that were hurtful (even though he said that he was only trying to help). He would say something like, “I know you’ve said you wanted to lose weight, so how is that coming along?” or “Are you still on your diet?” He has no clue what that did to me … it was almost like a reverse effect. Instead of those words making me want to lose weight more, they made me slack more. I felt like if we went anywhere, we looked like a “10” … you know the stick & the round numbers? (LOL). Anyways, I broke up with him last year and God introduced me to a Christian man that helped me see that I liked me for me. He helped me see that I am God’s creation … I AM fearfully and wonderfully made. Due to distance, there were only a few dates with that guy. However, God was working behind the scenes as He often does. A good friend & co-worker wife passed away suddenly (over 4 years ago by now). We would talk every now & then about God, life stuff, etc. He began stopping by my office ever so often to say hello or bring me devotional books from his church. Our talks got to be more frequent. He asked me out & our first date was March 25 of this year. He saw me sort of how God does … inward beauty reflecting outward (seeing Christ in me). Long story short, we fell in love & married on a beach October 1st. He is everything I never knew I needed … he loves me for me. He always tells me I’m beautiful (scars & all). I am truly blessed & I thank God for him & the Christian influence he is on my sons as well.

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      1. Ditto for me! I think I’m going to ask God for His eyes, mine are not functioning optimally, I see myself as fat and ugly and have for years. Didn’t help when I had my physical last year and the doctor slapped the obese label on me-OUCH! I was pretty mad and all I could think of is that she has to out weigh me by at least 20 lb. I do want to loose weight but only for health reasons, not so I fit this societies idea of perfection. Thanks for posting this, I needed it! Blessings❣️

  3. Thank you sooo much for this today. I’ve always felt 10 lbs., up to 20 lbs. overweight. But this really really hit a cord. I am so thankful for so many blessings, I am thankful for my loving family, & their kind words. I always say something negative after a compliment. I will praise God for making me just the way He did. I love God, love people, love chocolate! Blessings to you dear SHARON!!!

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  4. Thank you. At the perfect size and weight there has always been this constant urge to not be content with myself or my weight. Years later at the not so perfect size and weight, I do experience challenges to embrace and accept the pure love that

  5. …continue.
    Pure love, the love of God is my hope, my strength to rest in and find comfort in when I look in the mirror and am tempted to believe lies. I ask my heavenly Father to allow me to see me with his eyes of love.

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