Monday, April 09, 2007


Last night I watched Wife Swap on TV and it made for uncomfortable viewing. The one husband ended up telling his wife Ruth that if they carried on the way they were going that they would probably end up thinking about divorcing..............not your usual entertaining Sunday night viewing!
Ruth insisted on eating totally healthy food, taking her children to out of school activities and doing lots of sport herself but there was little one to one time with and her husband. She was also a paraplegic and confined to a wheelchair.
I think that one of the daughters from the swap family described the situation well, she told Ruth she was a bitch and that she did things because she wanted to prove she was as good as everybody else. Ruth had previously talked about her need to live life to the full and not letting anything stop her. Sue the other wife described Ruth as a control freak.
Now I found nothing wrong with the whole healthy eating issue, ours is a low or no fat, low or no salt and low or no sugar household but I don't make a huge deal of it. My 15 year old loves strawberries, she loves the genetically modified looking gigantic ones and every time she wants them I tell her she is going to wake up one day and find she has grown an extra head! Which of course she doesn't find funny! She is also not keen on the healthy option beans that I buy but if she wants to buy ordinary beans then that is fine by me.
SnoWhite is renowned for being able to eat anything and everything and she does but her eating habits have definitely improved since she has become a vegetarian . I may tell her that some food is not good for her and she is going to end up a heffalump but I don't stop her eating what she wants to eat.
Ruth in the wife swap went into the second week and made the rule changes and part of the changes included healthy eating. Whenever I have seen this sort of thing happen on Wife Swap and other such shows I think that the big mistake is to go from one extreme to the other. Make them pizza and chips but make the healthy option, I make soya mince spaghetti bolognese and lasagne and you cannot tell the difference, home made chicken nuggets............when trying to convert people to healthy eating it is important to give them what they like BUT the healthy option. However, I remember reading something Jane Fonda said about when her family first started healthy eating, she spoke about birthday cakes being huge, heavy , healthy masterpieces but then she realised that having treats of things that you like now and then is not a problem and they went back to having sugar filled birthday cake creations.
Becoming the food police is just not going to work.
I was shocked on the program to see Ruth appear to become quite manipulative, when one of the girls wouldn't get up in the morning after constant calling . Ruth went up the stairs and started crying and tried to turn everything around to how unhappy she was. Do I sound cold and callous to a disabled woman? I don't think so, Ruth wants to be seen as a capable women and to be treated equally. If it had been me in that situation then I would have said SOD THEM, and left them there. If they want to be late for school and get into trouble then it is up to them. Some times I can barely lift my head off the pillow in the morning due to pain from the arthritis and the Dercum's and the last thing I would be in the mood for is dealing with stroppy teen aged girls.
I also do not think that taking your children to ballet , Brownies, swimming and violin lessons once a week are too much for a child if that is what they want to do. I think the whole issue was the control aspect of Ruth controlling everything they do is more the problem.
The funniest and sweetest bit was Sue's daughter Tierney who is autistic asking Ruth about how she managed to have sex because she was disabled. I really don't think that Tierney could get her head around the fact that even though Ruth was disabled and couldn't walk she could ever manage to have sex. Tierney saw it very literally, your legs do not work so everything else must not work. I really liked Sue's and Ruth's girls and felt that they were a credit to their parents. The best thing that I liked about the show was the fact that Sue was a big girl but she was bright, happy and confident. Being a tall and athletically built person I feel that too often society makes you feel as if you are a failure and stupid if you are not a UK size 10.
None of my girls are short and Fiona is already 6 foot plus at 15 and from the look of it Beauty is going to be taller!




An Irish Blessing

(A Blessing from St. Patrick)
May the road rise to meet you,

May the wind be always at your back,

May the sun shine warm upon your face,

May the rains fall soft upon your fields,

And, until we meet again,

May God hold you in the hollow of His hand.