Snack Shaming

8:30 PM

(photo credit: wikipedia)

My 9-year-old came home from school yesterday, dropped his bag in the hallway (why can't he remember to hang it up is beyond me), and strolled into the kitchen for his usual after-school snack. I joined him as this is often the best time for us to catch up and talk about his day.

While he's munching away on some grapes, I ask him about his new snack routine at school. "Do you have it before lunch? Are there assigned seats? Is it a working snack?" You know, nosey mom questions. That's when he told me the kids said they felt bad for him.

Me: "Why do they feel bad for you?"

9 yo: "Because they asked why I never bring chips or Doritos for a snack and I told them we never have that at home."

Me: "That's true. It's okay to have it once in a while, but too much junk food is not good for you."

9 yo: "I told them that. Then they asked if I've ever had Burger King or McDonald's and I told them never. They couldn't believe it and that's when they said they felt bad for me."

Me: (wheels turning) "They just don't understand because maybe that's what they have often. We just never go to those places when there are so many great restaurants to choose from around here. It's okay to have that stuff once in a while. But like junk food, too much fast food is not good for you."

9 yo: "I know. Then they asked what is my favorite thing we have for breakfast. I told them Belgium Waffles. They all agreed... Food from scratch is the best, right?"

Me: "Right. And yeah, it's hard not to like Belgium waffles."

My 9-year-old really doesn't care what others think or say and will be the first to set you straight. I know his classmates were probably more curious than really shaming him for never eating that crap. We don't deprive our kids of treats and we try to limit how much processed foods they eat. This is just another sad reminder why there's a childhood obesity problem. I'm now scheming ways we can start getting these other kids excited about real food.

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