It would be great if the deeply-sensitive issues children face could truly be solved with one simple conversation. Unfortunately, tender issues such as poor body image sometimes take a lot longer to overcome. But the good news is that a lot of these things can be tackled — like overcoming child obesity — one step at a time.
Step 1: Start with a Question-led Discussion
It’s been shown that using shame or making brash statements such as, “We need to do something about your weight,” or “You really need to go on a diet,” don’t help kids at all. In fact, they can often have the opposite effect.
Instead, start the conversation by asking, “What does being healthy really mean to you?” Forego asking yes or no questions. Instead, with respect and gentleness, get them to open up about the reality of their situation.
One of the biggest mistakes that we humans make (especially parents) is to assume and assert our opinions. The root of true mental health comes with diving into the truths that live within — those things that we’re all afraid to share, but when we finally let them out lead to healing.