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Should this be considered child abuse?


yellow 4!
Yes, I do agree with you that this is a form of child abuse/neglect. It is completely 100% down to the parents to make sure their child is happy and healthy. Medical problems and/or throwing tantrums are no excuse for 400lbs at eight years old. She has shown she can have a controlled diet by losing 320lbs at the obesity clinic.

I know it's easier to give in and it would obviously have been an emotional struggle for the parents, but saying "no" to your child can often be the best thing for him/her. I don't believe for a second that there was no way for them to prevent Jessica from getting in such a state.


Registered Member
This is absolutely child abuse. I know how easy it can be for a parent to use food to help keep a child quiet, and that is the only way an 8 year old can get so big. She had to have been being fed a lot of food as a baby and they just trained her to eat and eat and eat.
The fact that it took 8 years and still the parents did nothing screams of neglect


/ˈɪzəˌbɛl/ pink 5
It's easy to say child abuse when a child is malnourished and nothing is done about it, but I would say the same thing if the child is overnourished to the point of extreme obesity. It's not as much as causing it (ex. forced feeding) but permitting it to happen especially when it reaches a life threatening state just because it's easier for parents to give in to the child's demands than to worry about enforcing their parental authority and dealing with tantrums, for example.


4 legs good 2 legs bad
No, it's not child abuse in anyway. It's not like her parents were forcing food down her throat. It would have been child abuse if Jessica was emaciated.
What if the child is emaciated because he/she chooses not to eat? How is that any different than being allowed to eat in excess to the point of weighing 400 pounds at the age of 8? To me, they are both child abuse. It's the parents' responsibility to teach their children healthy eating habits. Doing otherwise is exposing them to unhealthy living conditions, which is abuse.