First I want to say I really appreciate your concern for your daughter AND your willingness to look at your own approach. You did nothing wrong, and were only trying to help.
That having been said, unfortunately your daughter is clearly not open to your help at this time. This is obviously a very touchy subject for her. She is going through whatever she is going through with weight and food and she might be experiencing other emotional symptoms such as depression as well. Unfortunately, you may be the last person she will turn to for help, because you are her mother and mothers and daughters have difficult relationships. Eating disorders are often about control and so she will probably react strongly to anything she sees as an effort to control her.
What can you do? Right now, maybe nothing. If she is willing, continue your pleasant relationship as if nothing happened. If she brings it up again you might want to just gently say you were just concerned, didn't mean to overstep, and that you are there for her, perhaps that if she doesn't feel comfortable talking with you but talks with someone else that is ok too. She has all the cards now.
Thank you so much for your response -- I really appreciate your taking the time to share your thoughts. You are very astute to understand a situation from a description and I thank you for your advice. You have made me feel better and it is very comforting to reach out to a third party (other than family) who can see the issue in a rational way. You are a very kind person and I wish you well. DACD
I just wanted to let you know I have read your post. I really don't have a whole lot else to add because the advice you have been given pretty much covers what I think about your situation as well. I do not think you overstepped your boundaries by expressing your concern. Even though her reaction was what it was and she may have felt hurt, she probably appreciated it a little bit somewhere deep down inside, whether she knows it or not. I think she needed to know that somebody cares about what she's going through and she does. On the surface though, even in her own head, she is probably defensive and nervous about the whole situation. That is why she reacted the way she did. And like Zoelula said, you might not be the one she comes to for help. It has to be hard and I'm sorry about your situation. Let us know how you're doing.
Going thru the same thing w/ 26 yr old daughter. She hasn't spoken to me in a month since I brought up her weight issue but relayed a message thru my sister that she wasn't mad, just dealing with some issues. I know her and anger is her first response. She blames me , the world, whatever, then she gets over the denial and does something positive. When she was in the 7th grade I told her she had to start doing her own laundry. She pitched a fit!! Cried, saying her clothes would be ruined and that I was a mean mom! She got over that. Like I said, I know her. We went thru her break up with her first "true love". She got over that but it was a lot of work. I'm giving her time and her space (we live 2000 miles apart). She lives with her boyfriend in a house they bought together, they have great jobs. But her boyfriend's family tends to be overweight and she started eating more the way they eat plus she has an office job, blah...She'll get it together. And I'm sure when we finally talk, she'll tell me that she lost 20 lbs already! It's hard for me to barge into her life but she's a smart kid and she'll figure it all out!
I too need help with this situation. My daughter is 26, just got engaged and planning a wedding for spring 2013. She claims to be dieting but we go out to eat & she still makes the absolutely worst choices. I can't think of anything I Could say I have not said 2 or 3 times already. Should I just shut up? I am not just worried about nice wedding photos. I am worried about her health. She is always sick with something or another...plus I know she is not happy with herself. ???!!
I too have same problem, My son has been obese for many years, and with several weight related health problem, loss of employment, angry wife, angry in-laws and etc..
I have talk with him and encourage him to know that I do not want to loose him. At this moment he is sick and unable to work. I am afraid that I will loose him.
He will try to eat right but he health is so poor, he does not get a chance to work on his weight due to not feeling well.
My son is 34 lost his job can't drive and has moved back home. I want to help but he's very touchy about it. He has health problems because of his weight. He's eating better now here with me but his pre existing issues are so hard to deal with. I need help!
I have a similar problem and feel helpless. I have expressed my deep concern regarding his health to my obese son and his obese wife on separate occasions. All I hear is I know, I know. Every time I see him, he is even bigger. I can't sleep at night and don't know what to do. He is a walking time bomb. It is so difficult to see him this way.
I think the best thing to do is be as active as you can and enjoy life. Alot of times people with disabilities tend not to be included or participate in sports due to competition. I think everybody needs to have a sport they love. And do it at least 4 hours a week.
obesity is very complex and not just about food. its also about having HEALTHY RELATIONSHIPS AND BEING HAPPY WITH YOUR LIFE AND CHOICES
First I want to thank every one for this blog. I appreciate the opportunity to read about a struggle many of us have. I also have a 22 year old son who has struggled with his weight since he was 5. Food was something he just couldn't seem to control and craves the most unhealthy carbs. My husband and I cook regular food...you know the kind you find in the garden and ordinary meats. But it didn't seem to make any difference. As soon as he became old enough to drive, he was eating at all the fast food places. Anyway, it breaks my heart and I know he is cheated out of wonderful experiences because of his weight. I am very careful not to criticise as it takes me no where. He is super sensitive and knows he is fat. I am normal weight and eat healthy and have tried to lead by example, I exercise too. However, I know at a point in my own life when I was younger I had a food addiction. I honestly can't tell you how I got past it, but I think it was just persistence as I just couldn't stand being over weight. not even 15 pounds. Anyway, I guess I just pray that a light bulb will come on and he will want to change his lifestyle. He is a handsome, bright ...a good person. I just want the best for him.
I am happy to find this conversation. My 24 year old daughter has gained 60 pounds in the last 2 years and I have such concerns for her but don't know what to do to help. We have a good relationship and I love her personality, wit, intelligence, etc. About a year ago I told her I was concerned about her health and happiness and that she might want to connect with a support group like I did 30 years ago when I quit drinking. She got teary and defensive. I know she tries to diet and it always fails because she just keeps eating sweets and fast food as if she can't control it. I keep thinking I should do something to help since I'm her mother, but reading the responses to DACD has convinced me to just continue to be here for her and support her with love and acceptance. I think anything else I do will be counter-productive. This is something she has to do herself and it's going to require her to develop some skills she's lacking right now - like self-control, long-term discipline, and delayed gratification. Thanks Everybody!
I am in your shoes with an adult obese daughter whom family attempted to fix at a party by letting her know that bariatric surgery was a good option for her. I find talking about her weight or anyone’s weight with her is counterproductive, however, being supportive as far as enjoying her company and noting her strengths and having faith that she has the ability to solve her own problems is scary but best. Any attempt to overstep that and I’m enabling her. I aim to work on my own issues with food or weight without rooting my own horn and pray for her. Nothing my parents said or did helped me with my weight issues until I found what worked for me. It took me many years of trial and error and many during her growing up years. My husband had weight issues but he made peace with his limitations before we met. I pray for her every day to find her way and trust that she will find what works for her. I am part of a group called OAanon that helps those who live or are close to disordered eaters in relationships so I can get support for myself.