3

votes

Family reactions - Shutters down......

Answered on August 19, 2014
Created March 03, 2011 at 7:18 PM

This is a question spun off from 2 posted today, one by myself, about people's reactions and within that the question came up about whether you try to help people in your family or your friends. What experiences have people had with this? I'll be honest, ours has been a mostly negative one, I think myself and my other half are now seen as "preachers" and "know it alls" because we have tried to help people close to us with various ailments. Some have listened at first, then given up before they have even started and some literally think we are mental. It is frustrating as we don't make the rules, we just want the people close to us to get better, can you imagine if we did nothing, said nothing and then someone died? You wouldn't forgive yourself for not trying. We have definitely had way more success with friends then family.

50637dfd7dc7a7e811d82283f4f5fd10

(5838)

on March 05, 2011
at 02:53 PM

Yep, I just found an old pic when I was 25lbs heavier. I should keep it on my phone as well.

5e36f73c3f95eb4ea13a009f4936449f

(8280)

on March 05, 2011
at 01:48 AM

I tend to have problems with the "genetic freak" card too. I have a picture of "fat me" on my phone, but I carry my weight fairly well. A lot of people underestimate how much I really weigh.

F1b39d4f620876330312f4925bd51900

(4090)

on March 04, 2011
at 10:38 PM

Same here!! My husband eats all my paleo meals and the second I am not cooking its back to cereal, bread, frozen pizza, and TONS of cookies.

2507b557331c8a674bc81197531e609a

(4994)

on March 04, 2011
at 09:02 AM

Oh wow! That truly is fantastic, must have made you feel so good to have affected someone's life so positively :)

50637dfd7dc7a7e811d82283f4f5fd10

(5838)

on March 04, 2011
at 05:59 AM

Same here, ask, and I'll talk for months. Dont ask, and I'll say nothing.

06d21b99c58283ce575e36c4ecd4a458

(9948)

on March 03, 2011
at 11:34 PM

Busy fellow. No Soy products in his house!

1acc4ee9381d9a8d998b59915b3f997e

(2099)

on March 03, 2011
at 10:26 PM

@Carly: Its clear to me that my parents, who are in their later 70s, simply don't want to know. They are children of the Great Depression and WWII, so its hard for them to question the great social institutions like medicine and the gov't because they want to believe that those institutions still function like they used to when they...my parents, that is...were young.

B86cb1207d7a8336dad0b1bfd07d4187

on March 03, 2011
at 08:51 PM

Lol no. 5 sons. 16, 15, 12, 10....and 9 months!

145d4b0f988af15acc6b26eccc1f4895

(1932)

on March 03, 2011
at 08:21 PM

Well, that makes me curious: you have no daughters?

Af2ad65226384cedd4f5f08825a75b5d

(665)

on March 03, 2011
at 07:49 PM

it can be so frustrating because you are just trying to help and no matter what approach you take it can be hard to get the message across or get them to care enough to adhere.

2507b557331c8a674bc81197531e609a

(4994)

on March 03, 2011
at 07:39 PM

I know what your saying totally but we don't actually preach, our delivery is gentle and concerning, the problem is they don't want to hear it. We do lead by example but there are two specific people literally close to ruin we have said please please read this book. Unfortunately, they don't seem to have time to inevitably come round, it's liek a now or never situation.

2507b557331c8a674bc81197531e609a

(4994)

on March 03, 2011
at 07:29 PM

Michael and I have spoken about this often and pretty much came to the same conclusion.

B61f6513a155cd874b42efdad55312f6

(231)

on March 03, 2011
at 07:27 PM

actually, when i talk about things, people are generally ok, and open, and think it's great, but then they proceed to tell me I need to drink milk to get calcium.

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13 Answers

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3
1acc4ee9381d9a8d998b59915b3f997e

(2099)

on March 03, 2011
at 07:26 PM

That's how my family is, too, and I've tried to talk to them about it, but they won't listen. That said, I really have to say, though, that if they want to dig their graves with their cutlery, that's entirely up to them. I've informed them of the facts, and if they want to stick to their delusions, then there is nothing I can do about it. To me, its kind of like not discussing politics and religion...a no-going-there subject...since they are too old and it challenges their world-view too much. To me, its more important to love them for who they are and enjoy them while they are here, and be prepared to mourn them when they are gone.

1acc4ee9381d9a8d998b59915b3f997e

(2099)

on March 03, 2011
at 10:26 PM

@Carly: Its clear to me that my parents, who are in their later 70s, simply don't want to know. They are children of the Great Depression and WWII, so its hard for them to question the great social institutions like medicine and the gov't because they want to believe that those institutions still function like they used to when they...my parents, that is...were young.

2507b557331c8a674bc81197531e609a

(4994)

on March 03, 2011
at 07:29 PM

Michael and I have spoken about this often and pretty much came to the same conclusion.

4
Cfccbcf3450ac4919311ded8ef162d49

(2312)

on March 03, 2011
at 07:58 PM

You can lead a horse to water....

We can lead by example, but can't force anyone to change unfortunately.

4
Medium avatar

(12379)

on March 03, 2011
at 07:34 PM

I think that it really is in the DELIVERY of the message. Nobody wants to hear "you are killing yourself with the way you eat". And people will shut down and stop listening. I know that I never listen to people who 'preach' to me.

I've found a great way to get people (who have displayed an interest) on board is to invite them over for a nice meal. Show them how easy it is to cook this way and integrate it into their lifestyle. I supply links, and have even printed out a couple cookbooks for friends and family (the free ones available on-line).

That being said - I never give advice if it is unsolicited - on any topic. I HATE getting advice from people if I haven't asked. You'd be suprised how many people want to pipe in on how you should parent - what you should or shouldn't eat while pregnant, how your workout at the gym is to this that or the next etc. etc. etc. I don't even listen to any unsolicited advice, in fact I'm likely to do the exact opposite.

I think that leading by example is so crucial and being there in a supportive way to answer any questions as they come - because they will. People sometimes just need their own time to think, see how well you are doing and they will inevitably come around. So don't get frustrated with them, just be patient.

2507b557331c8a674bc81197531e609a

(4994)

on March 03, 2011
at 07:39 PM

I know what your saying totally but we don't actually preach, our delivery is gentle and concerning, the problem is they don't want to hear it. We do lead by example but there are two specific people literally close to ruin we have said please please read this book. Unfortunately, they don't seem to have time to inevitably come round, it's liek a now or never situation.

3
7e65e7c3794834b3526b77f92cabee55

(214)

on March 04, 2011
at 08:32 AM

Most people seem to be OK with the low carb advice... but mention that fat is not bad... or that dietary cholesterol won't kill you, and then that's it. You are a certified lunatic.

A while back, I begged a friend of mine to not go on statins when his total cholesterol was 230 and trigs <50 , HDL 60+ ... but who is he going to believe? His cardiologist who tells him that he is risking his life if he doesn't take the drugs or the crazy chick with these weird dietary ideas?

The good news is, not everyone thinks I'm mad. I convinced another friend to get with the program and not take the statins. At the time, his lipids were a mess (hi trigs, low HDL) and his weight climbing... but 1 year later, he is in excellent shape, has excellent blood metrics and is drug free (pasta free too).

So I guess if you can handle the ridicule, it's worth being the village crazy. You can still save a few souls!

2507b557331c8a674bc81197531e609a

(4994)

on March 04, 2011
at 09:02 AM

Oh wow! That truly is fantastic, must have made you feel so good to have affected someone's life so positively :)

3
21084e275703e9a3909dafa28e5d29b5

(1103)

on March 03, 2011
at 09:06 PM

I totally hear you! My parents NEED this. They have seen the journey that my husband and I have gone through. They've witnessed it first hand, right in front of thier own eyes - yet they call us crazy. My Mom event told me I had "joined a cult". I told her to "join me as we don't drink kool-aid because diabetes lasts forever." ;)

Anyhow, what we do is cook for them when we have meals together. If they ask or make comments we tell them again and again and again. I even bought books for them for Christmas (among other gifts) and send them articles (paybacks for my mom doing the same to me!) When they complain about not having grains or it not being practical we use our life as an example besides they make more money and have more free time than we do. We also tell them that they KNOW us and they know we wouldn't stick with it if it wasn't delicious.

Basically we never give up BUT it's also not for us to decide. They are adults. Give them as much information as you can and let them decide. Making a life change can't come externally.

2
3a833804187fe8926214e6c0bd8a0766

(1023)

on March 03, 2011
at 09:22 PM

My family made the whole "fad diet" accusations at first, and of course they all thought I was going to have a heart attack from all that "artery clogging fat" while they ate white flour Quesadillas cooked in "heart healthy" Wesson oil.

A year later and almost all of them are eating Paleo! They couldn't deny the differences they saw in me (weight loss, muscle tone, energy and one I didn't know would happen - better skin) so after a couple Ancel Keys/cholesterol myth articles they're all on board.

I never once suggested they try it, nor was I preachy. If they asked, I'd answer, but I never said anything about the foods they were eating... well, at least not to their faces.

2
145d4b0f988af15acc6b26eccc1f4895

on March 03, 2011
at 08:19 PM

If you "deliver" ANY sort of message, gentle or not, you are preaching. You are implying, if not outright saying, "I know better than you what is good for you." Although you may be thoroughly convinced (and even with evidence to back it) that your way is better and life-saving (I wouldn't disagree, but it's not me that needs convincing), denial isn't just a river in Africa, and food issues are very much like religion (which is why they call it "preaching").

You cannot, CANNOT "save" someone who doesn't believe that 1) they need to be "saved, 2) they can comfortably do whatever the requirement is and/or 3) it is the thing that should be done. This goes double/triple/quadruple when it comes to food issues.

It is sad, and you have my sympathy, but you simply cannot make someone do what they will not do.

2
Bb1ba0d71083ceaecd3a3b405a977454

on March 03, 2011
at 08:04 PM

You really have to pick you moments and not simply declare (much as you might want to) that someone's food choices is slowly killing them. Wait until someone asks about your lifestyle and use that as a segue into telling them about the benefits of your Paleo habits.

1
50637dfd7dc7a7e811d82283f4f5fd10

(5838)

on March 04, 2011
at 05:51 AM

I was just at a dinner party for my last night on vacation in the Virgin Islands (it was amazing) and we were eating the fish we caught 3 hours earlier spear fishing. When Desert was brought out, I had a 90% lindts bar and a half stick of kerrygold while others ate m&m's and ice cream. Everyone was baffled, started asking questions etc.. one guy was a dr., everyone else brought up some sort of exercise program they were on and the required nutrition plan... it started a 3 hour debate/discussion/argument... but most of the people ended up asking for website links or nutrition plans because they say what good shape I was in and noticed how much I was eating over the 2 week vacation. I was also the only one who chose to sleep in rather than going for morning walks to "earn our breakfast". But I did feel like they were playing they "you're just a genetic freak" card, but Im glad I opened their eyes to it. I never mentioned anything based on bad experiences before. I let people come to me rather than push it or preach it. It's the only way I think it can work. In my opinion, If people dont truly want to look for answers and help, then trying to give it to them is rather pointless.

5e36f73c3f95eb4ea13a009f4936449f

(8280)

on March 05, 2011
at 01:48 AM

I tend to have problems with the "genetic freak" card too. I have a picture of "fat me" on my phone, but I carry my weight fairly well. A lot of people underestimate how much I really weigh.

50637dfd7dc7a7e811d82283f4f5fd10

(5838)

on March 05, 2011
at 02:53 PM

Yep, I just found an old pic when I was 25lbs heavier. I should keep it on my phone as well.

1
462ed57189bd2b8ffbe2a975186191f9

(492)

on March 03, 2011
at 08:09 PM

"What?! No bread? No pasta?!"
There's a little more to it than that, but that's a large part of it, yeah.
"I'd rather go without meat! Besides, how do you get your whole grains and fiber and carbs?"
I eat fruits occasionally and vegetables.
"..."

Oh well!

1
B86cb1207d7a8336dad0b1bfd07d4187

on March 03, 2011
at 08:04 PM

I don't preach verbally. My body and physical prowess at 42 years old, speaks volumes. If someone wants to know, I tell them. I am a martial arts instructor. The only ones I advocate the Paleo lifestyle openly to are my students. The only ones I am adamant eat like me, are my 5 sons.

145d4b0f988af15acc6b26eccc1f4895

(1932)

on March 03, 2011
at 08:21 PM

Well, that makes me curious: you have no daughters?

06d21b99c58283ce575e36c4ecd4a458

(9948)

on March 03, 2011
at 11:34 PM

Busy fellow. No Soy products in his house!

B86cb1207d7a8336dad0b1bfd07d4187

on March 03, 2011
at 08:51 PM

Lol no. 5 sons. 16, 15, 12, 10....and 9 months!

0
9d43f6873107e17ca4d1a5055aa7a2ad

on March 04, 2011
at 10:28 PM

Haha, based on my success, my father and mother have gone paleo and my sister has stopped being vegetarian. My aunt and grandma say they have been influenced, but still eat bread and what not. My animal rights activist uncle has been openly hostile...

0
Cab7e4ef73c5d7d7a77e1c3d7f5773a1

(7304)

on March 03, 2011
at 11:03 PM

My family has listened, but only to the parts they want to hear. They now enjoy butter, cream, and red meat. Unfortunately, they enjoy these things with grains and sugar too. I've sort of given up. If they ask, I'll talk their ear off, but I don't preach any longer.

F1b39d4f620876330312f4925bd51900

(4090)

on March 04, 2011
at 10:38 PM

Same here!! My husband eats all my paleo meals and the second I am not cooking its back to cereal, bread, frozen pizza, and TONS of cookies.

50637dfd7dc7a7e811d82283f4f5fd10

(5838)

on March 04, 2011
at 05:59 AM

Same here, ask, and I'll talk for months. Dont ask, and I'll say nothing.

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