More than 60% of eight-year-old girls are dieting. Many think they're fat; 90% are not. Affluent toddlers have shown failure-to-thrive because their parents, fearing fat offspring, underfeed them. In a Glamour magazine survey in 1988, more than 80% of the women who responded said they fear getting fat more than they fear dying. And in studies of first graders, fat kids are still chosen last as friends and teammates, and are still called on less by teachers. Last year, a young boy shot and killed a fellow student who had continually harrassed him because he was fat. And in the past two years, two young boys shot and killed themselves after being teased about their weight once too often.
Chubby kids continue to struggle with issues of self-worth, body image, and self-esteem. They continue to suffer from peer rejection because of their body size and shape. Teachers don't know what to do; nor do parents. Supportive information on how to help large children lead happy, healthy lives at whatever size they are meant to be must be communicated to parents, caregivers, teachers, youth workers, and health professionals. In future issues of Radiance, not only will we expand to include the voices of our younger generation, but we will also provide information to those who care for our children.
These issues must be addressed NOW. If you'd like to help, or have ideas or suggestions, please
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