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School gate mum called DD "chunky" :-(

(60 Posts)
FiddleDeeDees Wed 14-May-14 13:41:54

Got talking to another mum when I went to collect DS from nursery this morning.

We both had our younger daughters with us and it turned out they were the same age (2.5).

I made some remark about thinking her daughter was older as she was so tall (she probably wasn't that tall, actually, I was just trying to find something to say).

Then the other mum looked at my DD and said: "yours is quite chunky".

I was rather taken aback and thought I'd misheard but didn't say anything as the nursery door was opened and my DD rushed in.

My DD isn't skinny but she's certainly not fat either...AIBU to feel offended by this woman, and also sad that my daughter will grow up with people saying stuff like this to her face or behind her back? Or am I being oversensitive?

Goldenbear Wed 14-May-14 18:27:45

Well I agree with others who have suggested it was probably a response to your observations on her daughter being 'tall'. I have a just turned 3 year old DD and get told by one particular Mumat the school gate that she is 'so big', 'so tall', 'is she not going to school in September?' she asks me this quite a lot, it is annoying after a while as DD is hardly a giant - she is 95cm and 3.1 years old.

Dancergirl Wed 14-May-14 18:27:29

Well I suppose we all have different views. But I don't think the OP is BU because SHE found it offensive.

MrsKoala Wed 14-May-14 18:05:53

No. Dancergirl it ISN'T offensive. you can't catagorically state that. In your opinion it IS. In mine it isn't and it doesn't mean fat at all. DH is 17st and 6ft2in. He is solid and chunky, (he does army circuit training and fell running) he is not fat. I have 'chunky' thighs and calves from my years of dancing and sports. i have been told they are 'chunky and satisfying' by partners (sorry TMI). I haven't found it offensive at all.

Dancergirl Wed 14-May-14 17:58:18

I wouldn't call an adult woman 'cute', but I would call a child that. confused Odd argument

The point is, 'cute' is a compliment to a child. It's not appropriate for an adult so wouldn't be used. 'Chunky' however IS offensive. It implies fat. You wouldn't insult an adult in this way, so why a child?

Revengeofthechocolatebunny Wed 14-May-14 16:26:34

Chunky is vaguely insulting but I would hazard a guess that she didn't mean it to insult. Some mums like to find differences such as if you said, my DD likes Peppa Pig, she might've said, oh my DD likes <insert current preschool favorite> or her mind might have gone blank.

Mine often did, and I would either say nothing or say something crass like that. Times I would walk home and think "why did I say that?"

My DD was very tall and I was always being told that she should be walking or in school by old ladies. Yea right, we actually tend to let them get past the age of 2 before they start school, luv!! Her height comes in handy now as she's been able to reach things down for me for the last few years.

Short arse that I am. smile

FiddleDeeDees Wed 14-May-14 16:22:25

Many thanks to everyone for their comments!

Just to reiterate, the other child actually wasn't that tall, so it's unlikely her mum had a complex about it! To me, 'tall' is neutral and more likely a compliment, whereas 'chunky' is definitely pejorative...but I see that opinions on that vary so I'll bear that in mind in future.

To the poster who thought I might have body image issues...hmm, as a very healthy size eight, I've never been on a diet or even weighed myself, so pretty sure that's not something to worry about...

Thanks again everyone, the diversity of opinion reminds me why Mumsnet is so great :-)

LilacRoses Wed 14-May-14 16:12:23

Yes, much as I love a chubby baby myself I do agree that the assumption that every baby ought to be is as annoying as these posters on fbook or wherever that state that "real women have curves". Nothing wrong with curves, nothing wrong with any other body type either!

GreyGardens Wed 14-May-14 16:04:28

steppemum - not just you. My daughter was never chunky, even as a baby/toddler, it's just a different build. To imply all babies should be is ridiculous.

JonesRipley Wed 14-May-14 15:50:13

Stick to safe comments:

"Your DD/DS has beautiful eyes" is a good sentence opener

Maybe the mum was also tall and got picked on at school for it so she is concerned about the same thing happening to her DD? That happens. You never know if someone will be sensitive comments on appearance - it's a bit like how people think it's fine to call someone skinny as a complement without knowing if there is some unfortunate reason as to why they might be skinny like anorexia or some kind of illness. It's best to just not go there.

Beeyump Wed 14-May-14 15:28:13

I wouldn't call an adult woman 'cute', but I would call a child that. confused Odd argument.

MrsKoala Wed 14-May-14 15:23:12

i've been called chunky a few times as an adult. All in complimentary tones i must add, and i have taken them in the spirit that they were intended.

Beeyump Wed 14-May-14 15:16:00

'...sad that my daughter will grow up with people saying stuff like this to her face or behind her back?'

I think you're getting carried away here. YABabitU.

Dancergirl Wed 14-May-14 15:02:11

I'm amazed so many people think this is ok!

Chunky is in no way comparable to be called tall. I think she was being very rude and I'm not surprised you are upset OP.

You wouldn't call an adult woman chunky so why a child?

steppemum Wed 14-May-14 14:58:14

Is it just me - I don't get this 'they are meant to be chunky'

well I have 3 dcs, and none of them were. That is simply because they were long skinny rabbit shaped and not cuddly round shaped.

I always found it strange to hold someone elses solid baby that didn't fold, as mine were all legs and arms and wriggles, and folded onto your lap rather than standing solid.

There is no right or wrong, they are just different shapes, but they aren't 'meant' to be one or the other?

WolfMoon Wed 14-May-14 14:51:29

I don't think I'd be thrilled if someone called ME chunky, but if someone called one of my eight month old DDs chunky I'd not be remotely offended. They're babies, they're meant to be chunky for a good while longer yet.

JacktheLab Wed 14-May-14 14:50:27

It's the kind if thing i might say without thinking then realise and have to hunt out the other mum to apologise hmm

I bet she didn't really mean anything by it

FragglerockAmpersand Wed 14-May-14 14:48:09

But I'm always hearing people call babies and toddlers 'fat' as a compliment and playing with their gorgeous chunky arms and legs confused

It's a bit of a sorry state of affairs that we're all so terrified of a bit of flesh that even when humans are SUPPOSED to be all plump we don't like it.

GreyGardens Wed 14-May-14 14:42:42

I think it's rude. Chunky means fat, or at least stocky. Not something you'd want your child to be, girl or boy I wouldn't have thought.

DonkeysDontRideBicycles Wed 14-May-14 14:41:47

Having made a comment about her DD's appearance I expect she thought you'd not mind her making one about your DD. Fasten your seatbelt this is how it is. An innocent remark or observation can bring a sharp reply.

steppemum Wed 14-May-14 14:41:41

well, I have 3 very tall dcs and someone saying 'gosh she/he is tall' was never offensive.

But I would never say a 2 year old was chunky or chubby or short or skinny or ...

because those words are all open to being offensive. I think it is because when you say about your OWN child she is so chunky, that is fine, but it isn't fine to put a label on someone else's child.

Worried22 Wed 14-May-14 14:39:36

I get fed up of being told my dd's so tall, maybe she hears it every bloody day like I do! I don't think people should comment on appearance at all, someone always gets offended.

Icelollycraving Wed 14-May-14 14:36:42

I wouldn't be very happy with it. I remember telling a nurse to not call my pfb baby chubby & fatty. I was seething the first time she did it,told her when she did it on the next visit. I don't care if she thought I overreacted.

CouldntGiveAMonkeysToss Wed 14-May-14 14:32:00

Someone once commented that my ds2 was "a bit chubbier and stockier than ds1 isn't he?" I just agreed with her because it's true. Thought it was a slightly odd thing to comment on but didn't think it was offensive.
DS2 isn't fat but he is really short with chubby cheeks (he's only two).

Floggingmolly Wed 14-May-14 14:31:02

If she isn't chunky; why will she grow up with people saying this to her face? confused

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