Adolescence is one of the weirdest phases of our lives because the body is constantly trying to adjust between being an adult and a kid. And that leaves us vulnerable to insensitive comments or gestures, which often have a lasting impact. However, one mother wasn’t letting her daughter have any of that and stood by her when a nurse apparently body-shamed her.
Jules Venn, mother of two and a personal trailer, discussed about the incident when she took her 13-YO daughter, Riley for her annual health check-up and the nurse practitioner they had to encounter.
Enter Nurse Practitioner. She begins by asking many questions- whats 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- anything else going on I should know about? Riley is friendly and answers all honestly and openly. She explains she will play two sports soon-softball in the fall and basketball in the winter. She tells her she goes to bed around 10:30pm and doesn’t have trouble sleeping. The NP presses her little on the sports participation sort of insinuating she will have trouble balancing that with school but Riley seems unaffected. She then asks her- How was school for you this last year? Riley again with complete honesty says- It was actually very difficult for me. There was a lot of drama and I struggled. The NP says that is pretty typical for 7th grade and moves on. She asks about getting her period and if it is regular. Riley explains she has gotten it but it has not been with regularity yet.“
The examination was going fine. However, right then the NP dropped a bombshell of a question on Riley and Jules. She said,
“TELL ME RILEY, HOW CAN YOU EXPLAIN ALL OF THIS WEIGHT YOU’VE GAINED?”
Given how Jules is a personal trainer, she was impressed by Riley’s growth and strength. And Riley was also probably aware of that. That’s why this question came as a shocker for both of them and almost brought Riley to tears.
As the nurse practitioner didn’t stop there and allegedly questioned Riley about eating junk food, Jules protested her line of questioning 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!”
Seeing how things were getting heated, the nurse practitioner escorted Jules out of the room they were talking in and asked her why she was getting so angry. Jules had the perfect reply to that.
“OUR GIRLS NEED TO BE EMPOWERED AND SUPPORTED AND CELEBRATED. THEY ALREADY HAVE TO COMPARE THEMSELVES TO THE RIDICULOUS SOCIAL MEDIA BULLSHIT STANDARDS. THEY ARE FLOODED WITH IMAGES OF PERFECTION VIA TV, YOUTUBE, FB, INSTAGRAM AND SNAPCHAT. THEIR WHOLE FREAKING LIVES HAVE A FILTER ON THEM!!”
“I HAMMER HOME THE IMPORTANCE OF EATING HEALTHY, EXERCISING AND OF COURSE SPORTS BECAUSE WE ARE SPORTY PEOPLE BUT MY GOD! KIDS EAT JUNK FOOD! KIDS SIT AROUND WATCHING NETFLIX! KIDS GET HEAVIER, LIGHTER, TALLER, WIDER! ITS NORMAL! OUR YOUNG LADIES NEED A BREAK!”
According to Jules, as the NP was beyond reason, they had to walk out of there. But she did leave a little suggestion for her on Facebook on how to do her job.
“Hey NP! Here’s what you COULD have said to my daughter and all of the beautiful young ladies you impact-
‘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!‘”