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My 5 year old cousin has been sticking her fingers down her throat during a meal. She just started this like yesterday! Her older brother calls her fat too.. Should I be concerned? She is in my care for a while. I just need advice!! Thank you in advance!

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Hey beary

No I wouldn't worry about it, at five I doubt she has noticed putting her fingers down her throat makes her sick, and if she has there is no way she has managed to work out that purging after a meal gets rid of all the food she just ate or that food is responsible for your weight. If she had an issue with food it would be more of a blatant refusal to eat, or fussy for only certain foods.  My friends daughter at five would only eat cheese on toast and fruitcake, for years and years, she was underweight and a real worry then when she turned about 8 or 9 started trying other things and I guess grew out of it.

Kids go through all sorts of funny stages, hopefully it will pass as if she continues she will get a sore throat and may even scratch it with her nail.  As far as her brother goes calling her fat again thats just brothers and sisters for you.  My son would say the same to his teenage sister who is tubby and has a huge complex with her weight.  He did not say it to hurt her feelings and had no idea of the impact it can have, so I just had a chat with him explaining there were times when it was just not appropriate to call her that, for example when she was eating, asking for more, or in an argument but when they were messing about calling each other all sorts it wasn't so bad if it slipped out in jest.  You may want to have a word with your cousin or his mum/dad asking them to remind him its not too nice and can have a bigger impact than they can comprehend when they use the term.  I hope this helped.<3

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