3yo, doctors, and self esteem! Oh my! - Mothering Forums

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Old 09-02-2013, 07:17 PM - Thread Starter
 
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This, ladies and gentlemen, is my little girl
http://instagram.com/p/a635jRJ8yb/
Her doctor has taken to talking, in front of DD, about how horribly overweight she is. Now perhaps I'm blinded by love here, but when I look at her I see a slightly chubby three year old, not the portrait of childhood obesity.

She weighs 41 pounds, and I'm not sure what her height is but the dr has mentioned she's the height of a five year old. My understanding is that 41 pounds is average for a five year old. This isn't our first weight related problem with them. I just posted here about the doctors claiming my breast milk was clearly not enough for my 14 pounds 4 month old, he's apparently too small while she's too big.

Bottom line, I'm not putting a healthy, active three year old on a diet. That just doesn't sit right with me. I'm 5'8" and DH is 6'4", our kids are likely to be large no matter what we do. I'm just worried about what all this talk at the doctors is going to do for her self esteem. Shes been having a really hard time making friends lately and we just had a new baby, this is not the time to dump a little body shaming on her too.

Do you guys have any idea how I can frame this in a non-damaging way to her? And also, to those that looked at her picture, am I wrong here? I just don't know how I can see a 3 year old with a bit of baby fat and the doctor can see a child in desperate need of a diet.
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Old 09-02-2013, 08:19 PM
 
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one way to know for sure is to scotch tape a piece of paper to a door or your fridge, have your child stand in front of the paper, draw a line with a pencil sitting flat on her head and then measure the distance from the floor to the line so that you know her height

then look up some growth charts, for exemple on this website:

http://pediatrics.about.com/library/growth_charts/ngirlstwo.htm

and see if she is within the normal range or just above and if above by how much ....

it's hard to say since your girl is clothed

you can find body mass index calculators too

http://pediatrics.about.com/library/growth_charts/ngirlstwo.htm

 

it IS irritating to have doctors make comments at time ..... my kids are all different built yet i feel i feed them the same ....

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Old 09-02-2013, 09:30 PM - Thread Starter
 
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So I just looked it up. I asked DH if he remembered her height at her last appointment and he said 3'4". That would make her in the 74th, not the 92nd as I'd been told.

I'm extremely upset that this practice tried to put my 3 year old on a diet and wean my four month old and were incorrect both times. How could they possibly not take the kids' height into account?

The 74th percentile I can see. She's definitely a bit chubby, but 92nd percentile? No way. She has a little tummy, but I can still see the girls ribs and hip bones when she runs around the house naked. Meanwhile her apparently underweight little brother is covered in little fat rolls. Ugh!

Should I call the dr's office and point this out?
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Old 09-03-2013, 05:06 AM
 
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if it were me i would do it in Writing ...because i can measure my upset and anger better that way for one thing so tone it down

BUT also because i would want to send graphs pointing out their "mistakes" ....

+ try to look up on a LLL website, in case you can find a chart that is more accurate for breastfed baby

& present it nicely to them, clearly but in detail (with reference of where you found the charts)

=> you could be "educating" them and make things easier for other moms who will use this practice after you ....

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Old 09-03-2013, 07:06 AM
 
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Skelly, your daughter is beautiful and in perfect proportion. What's probably going on is the dr took a hasty look at the scale without looking at the child and thought "41 lb is huge for a 3 year old", not realizing that she comes from tall families and is indeed quite tall herself. Simply looking at her pic, she looks much like my 2.5 year old: in proportion to her height, with a little chub here and there on the limbs maybe and the super common toddler belly. My girl is 29 months, about 3 feet or so and 32.5 lbs but the only reason she's not 35ish is that she's just coming off a nasty virus which had her not eating for a week and she's still slow to pick it back up. She's tall but not as tall for her age as your kiddo but still dwarfs many/most toddlers her age. I'm about 5'6" or 5'7" maybe and DH is 6'2 so I see a lot of parallels. Honestly I'd simply trust the child's wisdom and offer healthy food. She will eat what she needs and since she's active, that can look like a lot. I think you got stellar advice above and I concur 100% to write a response well supported by data. I absolutely wouldn't call DD's attention to any of it and would consider looking for care elsewhere. 14 lb at 4 months is great gain for the average 7lb baby. I wouldn't have the greatest confidence in this care provider.
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Old 09-03-2013, 07:52 AM
 
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I'm not sure I'd put a lot of energy into setting the doctor straight, although a well worded, not angry letter may get read and considered. 

More important to me would be stopping the doctor, or what ever other person talks about her in front of her, in the moment.  A simple, firm,interrupting "Stop. Don't talk about her in front of her in such a judgmental way. This isn't good patient care."


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Old 09-03-2013, 08:03 AM
 
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Why not find a different ped?

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Old 09-03-2013, 08:48 AM
 
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Well, if you want....me and my 65 lb three year old would be OK to come by and sit on your pediatrician for you!  


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Old 09-03-2013, 10:18 AM
 
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I’d definitely be seeking another ped. I agree with the previous poster who said that proportionally, your child looks “right.” I absolutely HATE seeing people with super-skinny kids who mention that their child is on a special or restricted diet because a ped suggested they were overweight. While it may be an issue for a child who is in the 25th percentile for height to be in the 95th for weight (and notice, I said may be, not definitely), it is perfectly reasonable for a child who is in the higher percentiles for height (as your daughter obviously is), to also naturally fall into the higher percentiles for weight. A test for body fat percentile would be a much better measure of health than where a child arbitrarily falls in these percentile charts, and in my opinion, if my doctor could not see with his or her own two eyes that my child was in a healthy weight range for their height, I’d be seeing someone else.

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Old 09-06-2013, 08:27 PM
 
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Originally Posted by mtiger View Post
 

Why not find a different ped?

:nod


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Old 09-06-2013, 09:57 PM
 
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She looks perfect to me. Find another doctor or ban him from talking like that in front of her.

My DD had been 95% for height and weight as ll along. She is turning 4 at the end of the year and about 46 pounds. She gets mistaken for 6 year olds at school. Apparently I was the same growing up. I remember being horrified that I was taller than my teacher in grade 5.
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Old 09-07-2013, 12:11 PM
 
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Your dd is beautiful.

I would run from that dr. What an UAV.

Forget about percentiles, they are not that important.

... just wanted to add: my dd is 4 and 45 lbs. A year ago she had the same weight, but now she's a lot taller.

Ds 9 and dd 5
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Old 09-07-2013, 01:54 PM
 
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I'm so sorry this was said to you - how awful!  I absolutely agree you should look for another doctor, or at least stop the comments in front of your daughter!  

 

I am 5'7" and my husband is 6'5".  Our girls (2 and 7) have always been at least at the 90th % for height, and likely always will be - my older one has consistently been 99th% - with weights from between 50th-90th percentiles.  Let me tell you, a child who is 90+ for height looks NORMAL at around the 75th percentile for weight, and looks VERY THIN at the 50th.  (If that makes sense!)  

 

Because my girls are so tall, people often comment and I try to make sure I respond as though they were giving a compliment (even if they aren't), such as "yes, she is tall - isn't it great" and then change the subject because I don't want my girls fixating on their bodies.  If someone made overtly negative comments on their height or weight I would be furious.  You are not over-reacting, and your daughter looks perfect to me!

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Old 09-07-2013, 02:06 PM
 
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Your daughter looks lovely and perfectly typical to me ;-)  Some doctors have a crusade, and with children that crusade is often obesity.

 

We had a ped neurologist lift up my daughter's shirt and grab her stomach during an appointment and say, "And you have to do something about THIS!"  Well, lady, she stopped being able to walk like two months ago?  Which is why we're like here and all?  And um, that's kind of my primary concern right now.  And while she, again, HAS NOT BEEN ABLE TO WALK FOR TWO MONTHS, her appetite is just fine. So perhaps she's put on a pound or two.  My daughter was three at the time she had gained some weight, but like I said, she couldn't walk and in the months before that, had not been able to run.  As most three year olds are little running machines, you can imagine this had a bit of an impact.  And aside from that, how very freakin disrespectful!  My daughter looked so confused and hurt.  I couldn't get here out of there fast enough.

 

So yeah, last appointment with that doctor.

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Old 09-07-2013, 02:08 PM
 
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She looks like a healthy and happy 3 year old to me. I'd find a new doc smile.gif

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Old 09-07-2013, 02:53 PM
 
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Yes totally inappropriate, especially to discuss in front of her. I would find another doc if possible.
Also, as long as she's getting plenty of healthy things to eat, the I wouldn't give it another thought. We are all different shapes and sizes. FWIW, my brother was quite a sturdy baby and boy and then got his pubertal growth spurt and just turned into a bean pole. The the funniest thing was, he'd heard that he was "overweight" as a child, and "too thin" as a young man-sheesh!

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Old 09-07-2013, 03:25 PM
 
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Originally Posted by NiteNicole View Post

Your daughter looks lovely and perfectly typical to me ;-)  Some doctors have a crusade, and with children that crusade is often obesity.

We had a ped neurologist lift up my daughter's shirt and grab her stomach during an appointment and say, "And you have to do something about THIS!"  Well, lady, she stopped being able to walk like two months ago?  Which is why we're like here and all?  And um, that's kind of my primary concern right now.  And while she, again, HAS NOT BEEN ABLE TO WALK FOR TWO MONTHS, her appetite is just fine. So perhaps she's put on a pound or two.  My daughter was three at the time she had gained some weight, but like I said, she couldn't walk and in the months before that, had not been able to run.  As most three year olds are little running machines, you can imagine this had a bit of an impact.  And aside from that, how very freakin disrespectful!  My daughter looked so confused and hurt.  I couldn't get here out of there fast enough.

So yeah, last appointment with that doctor.
Wow... I cannot believe ANYONE would say that, especially given the health concerns you were there to investigate. I'm glad you never went back to that hack! I'm sure you were a lot more concerned about the long term prognosis and how to best help your child regain motility. I'm enraged on your behalf - I'm SO sorry you were subjected to that! hug.gif
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Old 09-08-2013, 03:29 AM
 
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Skelly, what a beautiful little girl! I agree with all of the pp on finding a new doc! Absolutely agree that your daughter should not be exposed to any comment or discussion on her body or weight.


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Old 09-08-2013, 05:45 AM
 
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Time for a new dr! She is lovely and keep up the good wok of nursing that baby!

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Old 09-08-2013, 06:55 AM
 
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In case you need more encouragement, yes, find a new doc. She is perfect just as she is.

 

And FTR, she outweighs my (tiny) 5 year old by about 5 pounds, but is also 2 inches taller than he is. And he is one of the smallest in his class (wears 3T shorts), is ridiculously skinny (not an ounce of fat anywhere on him) and if it weren't for his muscle tone he'd look emaciated. And he was 14 lbs at 4 months old....

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Old 09-08-2013, 07:39 AM
 
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Echoing  what everyone else has said... she is beautiful and your doctor is a uav.

 

And totally anecdotally my super chunk baby is tall and thin now, actually wish she'd put on a few pounds.

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