North Dakota Woman to Hand Out Letters to “Obese” Kids on Halloween

Courtesy: MGN Online

Courtesy: MGN Online

FARGO, North Dakota (CBS News) — Most children expect to get candy when they go trick-or-treating. But, if they stop by one Fargo, North Dakota woman’s house, they might get an unexpected “fat letter.”

A station manager told valleynewslive.com in Fargo that a woman identified as “Cheryl” called into the Y-94 morning program saying that she wanted to make a stand against obesity during Halloween. Her idea? Give children who had extra pounds on them a letter instead of a sweet treat.

“You (sic) child is, in my opinion, moderately obese and should not be consuming sugar treats to the extent of some children this Halloween season,” the letter reads. “My hope is that you will step up as an adult and ration candy this Halloween and not allow your child to continue these unhealthy eating habits.”

Cheryl explained that she just wanted to send a message to the parents that their children had weight issues.

“I think it’s just really irresponsible of parents to send them out looking for free candy just ’cause all the other kids are doing it,” she said during the interview.

Some California and Massachusetts schools have also been accused of sending “fat letters” home with students. These notes include scores of a child’s mass index (BMI), a height-to-weight ratio that is used by medical professionals to designate if a person is underweight, normal weight, overweight or obese. Other letters directly address if a child is overweight and obese, and include recommendations on how to help the child lose weight.

The practice has been discontinued in Mass. because of fears that the letters may cause self-esteem and bullying issues.

North Dakota State University assistant professor of clinical psychology Dr. Katie Gordon told valleynewslive.com that the unsolicited fat letters could cause emotional problems for these kids instead of helping them with their weight issues. She said that having an overweight or obese child should be a matter between the child’s pediatrician and parents.

“That’s not something that someone can judge — the health of someone — just by looking at them,” Gordon said. “I think that’s the main thing. Even if a child is overweight, they might be very healthy because of what they eat and how they exercise. It’s ineffective anyway because it’s not likely to help the kid.”

A North Dakota woman says she plans to hand out this letter to “moderately obese” kids this Halloween in lieu of candy. / KXJB

10 comments

  • faye morris

    i think she should mind her own business….give the kids some fruit or raisins if she don’t want to give them candy….i bet she gets her yard rolled big time.

    • Sandra Baher

      There are always WITCHES at Halloween. This one is probably an old busy body that has no children or grandchildren that speak to her and she has nothing better to do. She should mind her own busy and get a life. No one cares what she thinks. I too hope that her yard is rolled! She is too stingy to buy candy.

  • Paula Link

    Looks like someone will be getting “Rotten Eggs” on her house this year if she sends out her public service announcement letter. This would definitely NOT be received well of my child or grandkids received this letter. What a sour old woman…she needs to get a life.

  • Michelle

    Childhood obesity is a problem. However, giving a letter to children at Halloween is doing more harm than good. There are many healthy options she could choose to give that would benefit all children such as pretzels, fruit, kook-aid pouches, raisins, etc. She is entitled to her opinion, but she should keep it to herself. Instead of taking an adult approach handing out a healthy alternative to all trick-or-treaters, she decided to take a hurtful and coward approach that does not give much thought to the emotional well-being of a child. ALL children are gifts no matter their size.

  • Barb Davis

    can’t believe that this woman is so perfect that she can sit in judgement of others. If she has to single out certain children for Halloween treats, then she should turn off her lights, lock her door and not hand out any candy to anyone. Reckon she goes to the grocery store and judges what people are buying or what they look like. OMG lady, are you serious????? Get a life cause the one you have now SUCKS !!

  • Pamela Ferguson

    I think it is just totally rude. I was always taught if you can do or say nothing nice to everyone not to say anything at all. I think she should mind her own business. Sometime is it not the way a person eat it is different issues maybe even medical issues. She needs to keep her lights turned off and go hide in her cave . Let the kids enjoy themselves

  • bryant

    i disagree, i think that the fatbody letters are NECESSARY. most parents these days, let alone certain members of society, honestly don’t care about appearance or health for that matter. a 9 year old child should never weigh the same as me, and i’m a 30 year old man. it is unacceptable. most of it goes back to the parents being complete and total failures. when i was growing up, did my parents stuff mcdonalds down my throat, instead of making me eat healthy? NOPE. if i didn’t eat healthy, then my mother would have given birth to a live rabid badger. fat kids have fat, lazy, stupid, parents. and yes i can say stupid parents. one would think that parents of all people would want their children to be better than them, but nope. that is not the case. . . but i guess its ok for your 9 year old son to weigh the same as you, and to have hypertension, and knees that turned to powder when they were 5 due to the extra strain of being 200 pounds at such a young age.

    personally, if a child is deemed morbidly obese, then the parents of said child should have their rights as parents taken away, and the child should be placed in protective custody, while the parents are charged with neglect, as well as assult. (yes i feel that it is detrimental to the life of a child for a parent that doesn’t care, to shove a big mac in said childs face)

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