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Mum turns to social media after her teenage daughter experienced body-shaming from a nurse during a recent check-up.

In the Facebook group “Moms of Tweens and Teens,” Julie Venn shared how her teenage daughter was treated during a recent health check.

“Enter Nurse Practitioner,” Ms Venn writes. “She begins by asking many questions, ‘What’s your bedtime, How much exercise do you get? Are you involved in sports? Do you get enough dairy in your diet?’ She asks her multiple times (if there’s) anything else going on I should know about? [sic]”

Ms Venn says her daughter answered all of the questions honestly, admitting that school the year before had been difficult, but despite the teen’s answers, the nurse practitioner seemed dissatisfied.

“The NP then looks down at her computer, then back up at Riley’s face and says to my 13 year old daughter, “Tell me RILEY, HOW CAN YOU EXPLAIN ALL OF THIS WEIGHT YOU’VE GAINED?”

Ms Venn writes that her daughter was caught off guard and noticed that her eyes “begin to glass over.” The nurse went on to explain that the “numbers don’t correlate” with her current weight and the numbers from last year, and began accusing the teen of eating junk food.

Jumping into action, Ms Venn writes, “I had a literal, physical reaction. I put my hand up and said, ‘STOP! You need to stop talking to my daughter about her weight. She is 13, she is strong. She is healthy and she is PERFECT. You need to move on!’”

Afterwards the nurse asked Ms Venn to join her in the hallway for a private discussion. Once out of earshot from her daughter, the nurse asked why Venn had reacted so strongly.

“I explained under no uncertain terms that she was out of line in the way she dealt with my daughter. Our girls need to be empowered and supported and celebrated,” Ms Venn says.

“They already have to compare themselves to ridiculous social media bullshit standards. They are flooded with images of perfection via TV, YouTube, Facebook, Instagram and Snapchat. Their whole freaking lives have a filter on them!”

The teenager was also shocked – “Riley’s response when we left was, ‘Mom, this is why kids have anorexia or feel like they want to hurt themselves,’” she continues. “She is exactly right!”

Here’s what you COULD have said to my daughter and all of the beautiful young ladies you impact wrote the angry mum –
“Hey kiddo. Let me tell you how exciting this time of your life is. I see you have started to grow into being a strong young woman and that is awesome! Know that some girls gain weight, some lose weight, some struggle with acne, some feel insecure but remember this- YOU ARE PERFECT just the way you are. As you mature you will be responsible for more things that pertain to your body- hygiene, activity, menstruation, exercise and healthy eating. This is just the beginning of a long, confusing, sometimes scary road to becoming a woman but it is worth it!

Good on you mum! This body shaming is getting ridiculous.

Share your comments below

  • Good on you Mum! Imagine if she hadn’t been there!

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  • This is something I’m going to be very careful of because I want my girls to worry about healthy not skinny.

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  • It has been proved that muscle is heavier than fat when it comes to weight gain. I know one boy who was eating exactly the same type and quantity of food who put on weight. He was doing a lot of easy work building up his muscles. Only problem was only eating the same amount of food made him tired. He has never liked junk food even at a much younger age. Fruit, vegetables and a limited amount of grain content are most of his food intake. He eats vegetables that are high in iron content so he needs to eat very little meat.

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  • Well done mum ! lucky girl to have a mum to stick up for her and instill great values !

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  • Go Mum… she is the best example of a strong female! Standing up to people who body shame and reinforcing how perfect her daughter is amazing.

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  • I would have been horrified if this had been said to any of my children or grandchildren. Life is difficult as it is. Don’t put more pressure on them.

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  • I think the nurse was too caught up in the figures [maths] rather than looking at the person in front of her. If there is a sudden huge weight gain then she should question why it is happening, and this is an alert to the mother to make sure all is right at home. Instead of getting upset – see what is happening, check out why, and if there is nothing untoward get on with life. But please, don’t make a big deal of it on social media. The poor nurse was just doing her job.

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  • Wow! Walk out and report!

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  • Whilst I love that this Mum stood up for her child, and agree this could have been handled better. I do believe we at times do not place enough value anymore on medical professionals. The nurse is right in saying something because this is the stage good healthy relationships with your body develop. My mother ridiculed me for wanting to exercise so I saw it as almost shameful. Sometimes mums get lost and caught up and need a little perspective outside of their own. There is no point sugar coating health!

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  • This nurse was totally out of line ! I think I would have made an official complaint.


    • I agree – It is the only to get people to stop body shaming.

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  • Well done for having the courage to stand up for her and let them know the damage they can do to a teenagers self esteem. I wonder if she reported it to the practice manager?

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  • Well of course you’re weight is going to be different from last year. It’s called growing up.
    The young girl has nothing to worry about she looks happy and healthy in the photos.
    Good on mum for standing her ground.

    Reply

  • Such a shame and sounds like a judgment rather a professional opinion.

    Reply

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