Whether it's you, your partner, sibling, children, friend, coworker, father or mother who blames others for their weight problems...you need to understand what blame means in order to help inspire change.
Blame, simply said, is a Responsibility Deficiency.
So please know that I come from a place of love and understanding when I say: No matter how much you care about your mom, people who are not ready to be honest and take responsibility for their part, are hard to help.
If your mother truly want things to change, then do what you can to help her. Yet, be sure to value you and your time. Seek out a professional to help her with her perspectives, limiting beliefs and her dis-empowering behaviors. Then you can help her find a weight loss program that is right for her. The two go hand in hand. You will not be able to create lasting change without addressing both the mental and physical sides of every goal.
It's also important for you to know that this task of helping your mother reach new levels of self-honesty is not in any daughter’s job description and usually backfires, pushing you both further away from each other. In some cases this type of interaction can do serious damage to your relationship. This is true for anyone, not just for you and your mom.
Remember that her “blaming” is the language she is using to try to convince herself that her condition is not her fault. This helps her to justify her thoughts and behaviors. Understand that your mom's perceived truths don’t have to be your truths.
The best things that you can do for your mom, and for you, are:
1.) Don't take your mother’s condition or life choices personally.
2.) Learn to see your mother as she is, with all that she is, and love her consistently even if you do not agree with her thoughts, opinions or actions.
3.) Support your mother in realizing her goals and achieving them, by setting out to be a good example for her in taking great care of yourself. Even if she may say that it’s easy for you and it’s not going to work for her because nothing ever does, she will take notice. You can become her reference of what’s possible.
4.) Don’t feel guilty for your own progress and happiness just because your mother may not be experiencing what you are experiencing. It’s common for people to lessen their own happiness and hold back any good news when they're with people who are sad, depressed or not experiencing growth. This doesn't serve either of you and is unhealthy both mentally and physically.
5.) Don’t let taking care of your mother’s physical and emotional needs keep you from taking care of you. Care takers often compromise their own needs for the sake of others. If you are not happy, healthy and fulfilled in your life, you will have less to offer others. Just like on a flight, you have to put on your air mask first, then you can help the person next to you put on theirs.
Despite what some people may think, weight problems are primarily the physical result of a variety of reasons pertaining to emotional distress, fears, and mismanagement of loss and pain. This is true for any addictive behaviors: eating, excessive exercising, alcohol, drugs, shopping, hoarding, sex, gambling, self injury, anorexia or bulimia, OCD tendencies, and what I call mood addictions, to name a few. Weight gain has also been linked with abuse. Many men and women who have experienced sexual, physical and verbal abuse growing up or in one or more relationships are prone to being overweight. Being unhealthy, overweight or obese has far more to do with past key decisions, inner conflicts, ongoing pain, unresolved trauma, your environment or your inability to manage your emotions, than it has to do with your genetics or life stages.
Ask yourself: What do you think is your mother’s reason for her weight gain and her limiting beliefs?
As for a strategy, try to get her to focus on things she has achieved in her life and the things she can successfully do for herself and for others now. If she can start stacking up her successes past and present, it will help her increase her confidence in herself and in her abilities. Help her to do things that make her feel good that do not involve eating. If she loves to take pictures, scrapbook, write, garden, paint, sew, knit, crochet, cross stitch or needle point, then help her get what she needs to do those things. If she loves puzzles, make sure she always has a puzzle table with all she needs out for her so she can stay busy with her hands in a positive way. You can reintroduce the magic of great music, too, as a great mood elevator or help her sign up for some classes that will get her out and moving.
You can also encourage her to do things for others by becoming a volunteer, if she's not too insecure to socialize. One of the best ways to get out of certain lesser emotions is to switch your focus off of you and onto helping others. Then you're thinking about someone other than yourself. Be careful though as this very thing that can bring you fulfillment can become destructive, if you stop taking care of you while you take care of others. You're looking for balance in every area of your life, including in the area of helping your mom reach a new level of self-honesty so she can stop blaming others for her weight problems.
Hopefully this information is helpful. Good luck with your Mom. If you need more guidance reach out to someone or contact me.
BSG Event Answers For Healthy Woman Members
by CJ Harlan
© copyright 2014