Parenting --Teens/14 yr old body image issues


My teen daughter is a tall and big girl, maybe borderline overweight or at the very least at the top end of normal weight for her height (She is just over 5'11" and I think is about 175).  She has come to terms with her height (for a long time she hated it but now has chosen to embrace it).  She is not happy about her weight or build.  She could lose weight but there is not much to do about her build, she will never be petite/small boned.  Anyway, we have been to therapists, read many books, talked about self-acceptance and self worth, etc.  None of this seems to be working I think because she doesn't feel anyone around her really "understands her." Her friends are thin and small, I am tall but thin, her little sister is slim, etc.

Recently she told me she would like to talk with her older adult half-sisters, both of whom have struggled with weight.  I thought, great!  She was too shy to ask them, so I wrote them an email.  One of them said no and the other has ignored the email.  I can't understand why. Did I offend them?  I know weight is a sensitive issue but wouldn't they be happy to help their little sister?

I'm disappointed because I thought finally we can get somewhere, there's hope, there are people close to her who can empathize with her, support her weight loss goals, give her suggestions.  I hate to see my daughter so down all the time…

Should I just let it go (talking with the older sisters) and try to find another way to help my daughter?

You're older daughters may have unresolved issues so they can't deal with it. I would suggest that you get your daughter to a therapist that specializes in body image issues. This would be important because they could be even more helpful than your other daughters. I think you should let it go and get an outside source of help.

Doc David

Parenting --Teens

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Dr. David Simonsen


I work with teens and parents on a weekly basis. I have learned that one way of parenting doesn't fit every teen. Being able to be flexible and a good listener can really cultivate a great relationship between a parent and teen. I will give you a no-nonsense pratical way to help your relationship


I am a Ph.D. level licensed Marriage & Family Therapist presently in private practice.



M.S. Marriage & Family Therapy; Ph.D. Psychology

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