Killer ConfidenceIf you followed Binge Eating Disorder (BED) Week last month, you might recall one of our partners, Killer Confidence – which is led by Kari Adams. Killer Confidence is a movement created to celebrate, empower, and embrace women as they heal and learn to love themselves just as they are. Kari uses this website to serve as a safe place to encourage self-love, self-esteem and positive body image in all women since eating disorders, negative body image and low self-esteem are no longer just teen problems. Having been through hell and back from difficulties, struggles and mental illness in Kari’s own life, she knows that with a little bit of work and a lot of self-love, Killer Confidence is absolutely possible! Kari also comes from a past with the eating disorder Anorexia. Now recovered, Kari uses her experience to generate awareness and help others. In this post, Kari touches on an important issue – medical intervention. This is a subject that is touchy for most yet completely relatable – when is a doctor overstepping their boundaries? doctorSo it’s that time of year again for my kids – oil change and tune up time!  First thing this morning we groggily head out to their annual check-up appointments and little did I realize that it would be in my son’s appointment with the doc that I would leave reeling about my own body image and perhaps the need to go on a diet.  (I know, I know, I just said the taboo 4 letter word, but worry not, I was able to dodge the proverbial bullet and talk myself off the ledge on the drive home. ) I thought for sure there would be something to tempt me into a relapse during my 13 year old daughter’s check-up where he would speak about the woman’s changing body, how it would soon take on some new curves and fat deposits that didn’t used to be there, how she will have to watch what she eats, etc. But nope, her visit went without a hitch and merrily along she went. Pan to adjacent room while Mom and doc walk over to join the boy as we commence his yearly visit so that said doc can stamp the chart with a clean bill of health and send us on our way. We should be so lucky. Without so much as skipping a millisecond of a beat, the doctor grabs my son’s chart and leans into us and says, “Now, I want you to look at this. This is the NORMAL line of where kids should be at his age, and this is where your son is.”  (Let’s just say the dot was more than a bit off the line as it flirted it up with the obese category). With excited anticipation in his eyes, my son perks up and asks, “Is that good?” The doctor sternly informs him that is is, in fact, not good and that he needs to lose weight. Okay, I get it. My ex gets it.  Even my son gets it. We all know his weight has become a bit of an issue over the past couple of years and that we need to address it. What I don’t get, however, is how someone like this arse of a physician believes that shaming and lecturing a child will motivate and encourage him to lose some body fat. I don’t understand the need to sit down next to him on the table, grab a handful of his belly fat, grip it hard and shake it vigorously while saying, “See, now this will all go away once you lose some weight!” He honestly could have left it alone at that, but no, he had to pontificate just a bit more to really hone in the message, in case my son didn’t get it the first  time. He goes on to say, “You won’t be hunched over like you are right now because you won’t have that big belly to be so ashamed of.”  Then as he’s jiggling to poor little guy’s male breast tissue, he adds, “And these, they will go away too.”  (And let me just say for the record, this doc is no “Situation” from The Jersey Shore himself, if ya know what I’m saying.) Kari AdamsOy! My poor boy. I’d never seen him look so ashamed and embarrassed in my life. We all have heard the message that childhood obesity is a problem in our country, and I think I speak for most everyone when I say, WE GET IT. But I believe that if we shame, humiliate, embarrass, harass and even ridicule kids into getting them to lose weight, these tactics will only backfire on us later on. Yes, as a mother, I have a responsibility to ensure my child eats appropriately and has balanced meals with controlled portions, but as a woman who is recovering from a life long battle with an eating disorder, I refuse to buy into the diet mentality bull crap which many of us know, doesn’t work and will only pack on more pounds later.  This ol’ throwback from the 50′s apparently hasn’t gotten the memo! Then, my triggered thoughts started in on me: Omigod, does that mean I have to lose weight too?  Did the doctor look at me and think, “Yeah, no wonder her kid’s fat, look at her?  Crap, he said portion sizes were the size of your fist, does this mean I have a binge eating problem because often times, my portions are bigger than my fist?  (Okay, I admit it, sometimes they’re much bigger!) So, as we leave the office, not only am I feeling shame and guilt thinking that I’ve completely failed my son, but I’m mortified as I start wondering if this butt-knocker thinks we’re just “one of those” families that consumes gluttonous amounts of junk food all day long as we sit on our bums watching hours upon hours of Television. ”Hell, we even have a fat cat,” I thought. Here’s the bottom line:  my son comes from stock that suffers from obesity. It is what it is. And on the drive home I decided that feelings of shame, guilt and remorse were going to get us nowhere and that I was just going to buck up and do what I needed to do to help get my boy into healthier condition.  Period!  This wasn’t about me, it wasn’t about me failing as a mother and it most certainly wasn’t about my eating disorder. ”Ed” already took too many years away from me and I’ll be damned if I will let him invade anymore of my thoughts, decisions and actions about myself or my children.  (Or even the darn cat!) About Kari Adams Headshot-Kari AdamsKari Adams is an entrepreneur, award-winning business owner, television host, speaker, and mother of two. She has appeared on the NBC Nightly News with Brian Williams, The Today Show, and numerous other media outlets and television shows. Kari speaks frequently about her own experience as a middle aged woman facing an eating disorder, in addition to hosting the popular, syndicated television show ‘Killer Confidence with Kari Adams’. The show highlights inspirational women and men who have overcome adversity and challenges in their lives, and those that wish to share their stories with the general public. Kari’s personal goal is to help others find strength in healing and to develop stronger self-worth or, as she calls it: ‘Killer Confidence.’