Some things are so much better left unsaid — especially around impressionable kids. Jenna Bush Hager opened up about her mom Laura Bush’s decision to not discuss physical appearance and the important, lasting impact that had.
“She never said things like, ‘Gosh, my hair looks terrible. Or, ‘I look terrible.’ Or ‘This dress looks bad on me,’” Hager told co-anchor Hoda Kotb during a segment of The Today Show. “And somebody (once) said, ‘Well I can’t believe she never had that talk to herself.’ And I said, ‘No, I’m sure she said it to herself, but she never said it out loud in front of her girls.”
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As a result, Hager decided that she will “never” talk about weight with her three kids, Mila, 8, Hal, 3, and Poppy, 6. “I had a mother that never (did), and I still felt like a chubby child,” the Today Show host explained. “But it wasn’t because of her; I think it was because I was chubby.”
When weight does come up with her kids, Hager is careful to change the subject. She recalled a moment in the grocery store, when Mila spotted her on the cover of a magazine, alongside a caption about her weight. “Mila yells, ‘What are lbs?’” Hager said. “And I go, ‘Oh Mila, nothing.”
“You know what I love?” Kotb responded. “She didn’t know what ‘lbs’ are. You don’t bring it up.”
A post shared by Jenna Bush Hager (@jennabhager)
That challenge that Hager faces now? Making sure that her three children remain confident and happy with their bodies as time goes on.
“I see my perfect little girls right now. And they look at themselves in the mirror — and they’re so proud — and I’m like, ‘How can I leave that? How can that stay?’ I don’t know the answer,” she noted during a Today Show segment in 2019.
Body insecurity can be a long, endless battle but we’re so impressed that Hager is doing her very best to make sure her kids feel as good about themselves as possible.
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