Being Peaceful With the Pudge
As the parent of a son and the sister of brothers, I’m well aware of the pudgy stage. My Boy is not in it at this point, although I’m observing some of his friends entering and exiting said stage. One of my brothers went through it, although the other retained his broom-thin form of knees and elbows from childhood to adulthood.
You’ve probably seen it yourself- those smooth faced boys of ten or eleven who are swelling in the middle, and have the softest looking cheeks. Personally, I want to gather up the ones I’m qualified to hug (with permission) and tell them how awesome they are. One of them I frequently do.
A shout out to boys is in order now that we’re into the season of winter eating and you may be seeing friends and family. If people in your life are likely to comment on the pudge, be ready to back up your boy. For boys who are dealing with pudge, they deserve to know it’s ok. Weight gain is normal when kids are heading into puberty, but it can be more dramatic for some than others.
As a society, we’re concerned about childhood obesity and the impact it can have on our kids’ lives in the moment as well as in their futures. This concern is understandable, but we do need to keep normal variations in mind. Knowing that some boys will gain obvious weight before they surge into puberty (as will some girls) is important.
This is a time when kids are entering a super sensitive stage of body awareness and confusion about what their bodies are actually doing. Best we help them rather than hinder them. Girls are often seen as the only ones with body image woes, but boys struggle too, and we have to remember to support them.