Tuesday, March 21, 2006

Weight Loss and Entitlement Mentality

I've read a couple of blog entries within the past week that mentioned the entitlement mentality in North American culture. We get to feeling that we deserve something for some reason, or that someone owes us something. The entry that struck home for me is this one by Barbara Curtis of Mommy Life. Here's what she said that just about slapped me in the face:
I've learned to let go of any entitlement mentality. If other people don't have to struggle with their weight and I do, so what? Other people struggle with other issues that I don't have to. My job calls for handling a lot of food even though I can't eat a lot myself right now. A bank teller has to handle money all day and not keep any even if she's broke.

That last sentence made sense. You see, ever since I was diagnosed with diabetes, the thought has been in the back of my mind that I shouldn't have to fix nice treats for my family. The reasons have been (1) I'm not supposed to eat it, and if it's not good for me, it's not good for them; and the one I used more often, (2) If I make it, I'm eating it. Talk about entitlement mentality! I felt entitled to eat a piece of cake if I made it. Or if we were at someone's home, I felt entitled to eat dessert because she had gone to the trouble of making it and I didn't want to offend by not eating any. Or if everyone else is having some dessert, then I should too. It's not fair that I can't have any.

Ok. So let's look at this bank teller analogy. She handles that money all day. There's plenty of it there. And she needs money. It would be nice to have some new clothes. Other people have plenty of money; why can't she have it too? I think we can see where this is going. It's still not right for her to take it, no matter how much of it she handles or what nice things she could have with it. So it is with eating. Just because the food is there and everyone else is having some does not mean I can have it too. It doesn't even mean I'm entitled to it. Just because I have to handle it to prepare it for my family doesn't mean I should eat it.

Our pastor taught us that we can't always do what others do. Other good Christians might be able to watch a certain TV show without seeming to be bothered by it, but I cannot. I've made a commitment to keep certain things out of my life, and watching that TV show would violate that commitment. I believe I can apply this to food, too. Other people can eat desserts; I cannot. Other people can eat as much as they want, with no adverse effects; I cannot. That's just the way life is. How many times have we told our children, "Life's not fair!" when they've complained that it's not fair that So-and-So got something when they didn't? I think it's time I grow up!


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  2. Ooooh, this was REALLY good! Thanks! I might have to link to this post from my blog. (o:

  3. Just wanted to let you know that I linked to your article! It was just too good not to. (o:

  4. Feel free to link to anything! LOL Thanks!

  5. Susan, this is an excellent post/train of thought. I can't think how many times I have eaten something because in my mind I "deserve" it.

  6. I can soooo relate. I am a type 2 diabetic controlling by pills & diet married to a type 1 diabetic controlling by insulin, pills & diet. I refuse to make regular desserts cuz I like to taste while cooking & don't want to get tempted by sin (sweets) lol. It is a real struggle trying not to get tempted cuz I get tempted by sweets at church dinners & the monthly church ladies circles. Oh the devil tempts at the church dinners. Maybe they should've put in the ten commandsments that thou shalt not fix cheesecakes, boston cream pie/cake or anything with chocolate at church dinners lol. Whenever my hubby feels like he needs to eat a candybar while we are out & about cuz he gets to feeling low & has to buy one to eat then, I feel depriv4ed & end up getting a few for myself cuz I'fd feel deprived if he got to have one & I shouldn't be doing that. My downfall is sweets & I need to over come this. Good post... :)


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