Earlier this week the media began covering a story about an Ottawa man who lost custody of his two children due to obesity. I stumbled upon the report on MSNnow last night. The original article was very vague and only provided that the man was originally 525 pounds and was down to 380 pounds. I surely thought the man didn’t lose his kids simply due to him being obese. There are other obese parents out there who are plus size. I’m even considered obese. Does this mean I should lose my son too? I hope not.
Come to find out after I did my own research the ex wife of the father had the children taken away from her over a year ago because of a suspected drug overdose which hospitalized her. Here’s what we know about the father:
- 1. At one point the man was a chronic marijuana user. He no longer smokes chronically but there are no reports on if he still smokes or not. He also use to run a marijuana co-op on the side from his computer business.
- 2. The man was an avid World of Warcraft player. It’s reported he played 24 hours at a time while but he disagrees & said he only played once a week from 10:00PM until 4:00AM.
- 3. The father use to fight with his ex wife. No reports of the fighting being violent or physical.
- 4. There were no signs of abuse towards the children. His home is considered suitable.
- 5. The father lost all of the weight so far on his own. He refused gastric bypass surgery.
Apparently the children have special needs. They’re currently in a foster home with a single mother who has 5 other children. The children will be put up for adoption. But how exactly is a single mother with 5 other children more suitable than their biological father? Other than playing a World of Warcraft, and previously chronically smoking marijuana the father has stability in his life. The judge even confirms this in his ruling.
“(The father) also has achieved stability in his personal life. He has lost a substantial amount of weight through daily intensive exercise and dieting. (The father’s) weight loss regime is itself a full-time job. So is parenting two high-needs children. One will inevitably have to give ground to the other.”
I don’t quite know what to think of the ruling. The father lost weight on his own to get his children back. Gastric bypass surgery can be a deadly surgery and I applaud his efforts for how much he has done on his own. He is a role model to anyone who’s considered gastric bypass that losing weight can be done on your own. I don’t see how 145 pounds lost isn’t good enough to keep his children especially since he’s not abusive or negligent towards them. How is a single mother with 5 other children is more suitable than the father only because of his weight? How can a single mother with 5 other children have more time than an obese father losing weight? I don’t know about you but I’m overwhelmed with my son and my stepson at times and I have my husband who helps me. I have days where I can’t get anything done in my home because of keeping up with my boys. Wouldn’t a single mom with 7 children (two being special needs) be more overwhelmed than a father losing weight? There has to be more pieces missing from this story other than what special needs the kids have. It’s absurd to me that this father will never see his children again because of his weight.
I’m going to turn the rest of this blog over to you. This is an interesting topic to talk about. I’d love to know what you think. Here are some questions to begin:
- Should the father have lost custody of his children because of his weight?
- Should parents who are considered obese lose their children and why?
- When is obesity too much to take care of children?
Leave your answers in the comments section below. I can’t wait to read your thoughts.