D.L. asks from Conesus, NY on August 13, 2009
Concerned About My Son's Height
My son, just turned 7, is 45 inches tall and weighs 42 lbs. (He is still wearing size 5 jeans.) Although we haven't been for his well child visit yet, I charted his height and it's about the 7th percentile. He has always been below the 10th percentile for both height and weight. His father is 5'11" while I am 5'1". I have 2 daughters who are also below the 10th percentile for height and weight. All 3 of my children were born between 2 and 3 weeks early. Many of my friends have heard my height concern and say that it is unnecessary because I'm not a tall person and they are sure he will have a growth spurt soon. Nonetheless, the teasing started last year at school. Even the girls in his class are taller than him. We have had several talks about this. He is a big fan of Star Wars so we talk about the fact that Yoda is small but that doesn't get in his way. We stress that size doesn't matter, it's what's inside that counts. While I don't let him know my concern, it does bother me. I think life is more challenging for short men...and I don't want him to have any Napolean complex. Anyway, our well child check is next week - should I talk to my doctor about my concerns?
1 mom found this helpful
K.P. answers from New York on August 14, 2009
I've been raising 6 children. Two nephews, three neices and one son. My youngest nephew is and has always been very short. I have a picture of the children in height and age order. That was fifteen years ago. Now they are all over the place with heights. My son, the youngest and littlest at the time is now the tallest. I remember when his cousin (just a year older) was taller than him and now he is not.
Some things you should know. Kids are going to tease kids but your kid can not just survive the teasing but thrive through it. My nephew is a funny, likeable, delightful young man. He has learned how to handle adversity and challenges relating to his small stature. He is only 5' 3" tall and 15 years old. He loves his height and isn't bothered by it which is great.
I say just give your son the support and encouragement he needs to be a great and whole person.
M.F. answers from New York on August 14, 2009
Don't worry about it. My husband is only 5'4 and weighs only 135lbs.....we are almost the exact same height, and when I am pregnant I out weigh him by quite a bit! That being said, he has never found height to be a issue. If someone mentions that he is short he tells them he is glad about his small size... he is perfectly comfortable flying coach and never has to worry about not having enough leg room in a compact car! Teach your son humor and try not to mention his height. If its not a big deal to you, it won't be to him either.
My husband also has 5 brothers, the tallest of which is 5'7, they are all incredibly successful, smart men who are the life of the party and have great success in their careers and social lives.
Best of Luck!
G.L. answers from New York on August 31, 2009
My son is very short for his age. He is going to be 11 but, is the size of a 3rd grader! I find it tougher with adults towards him...."OMG-he's so small" or "what is he like 6 years old" - I so want to say these people, "OMG-you are so fat"! Kids are easier to deal with because we say God makes us in all different shapes and sizes and wouldn't it be a dull and boring world if we were all the same height?!
Just know you are not alone and just encourage the positive like you are doing!!
M.L. answers from New York on August 14, 2009
Hi, first allow me to ask what the acronym SAHM means.
I only have one question: does he get enough sleep at night, because this has been proven to cause some children to be a bit shorter. Otherwise, I really don't think you have anything to worry about. He just might be a shorter person and that's okay. Continue to help him to diffuse the criticism he may receive from children, and to help him realize that children always find something negative to say about one another. Be careful about comparing him to a creature from a sci-fi flick, because your son is not a creature, he's a very valuable human being with a lot to offer the world, tall, or short.
G.T. answers from Rochester on August 14, 2009
I know how you feel. My oldest son was also short. I remember he came home from school one day actually in tears. He was not allowed to use one of the items in the gymnastic class because he was too short and some of the other kids laughed at him. That was in 6th grade. By the end of 7th grade he had grown 12 inches! Yes, 12 inches! I remember having to go shopping for him almost every month just to keep him in pants that weren't too short! Now he is fully grown and is 6'1". Give him time to hit his growth spurt.
M.O. answers from New York on August 14, 2009
You've gotten some great ideas already. I just wanted to add quickly that the term "Napoleon complex" implies that the only way for a guy to deal with being short is negative. To the contrary, short guys often find wonderful, positive ways of coping: they're often the sharpest wits around. On the chance your son WILL grow up to be short -- and some guys do -- I really recommend reorienting yourself to see that as positive, so you can help your son see it the same way.
Just for starters, you can try to expose your son to sports where being short is an advantage -- male jockeys and gymnasts have to be short, for example, or you can sign him up for martial arts training (these classes are often taught by Asian men, who may be shorter than their white counterparts, and in many martial arts, being small and quick is better than being big and lunky).
Good luck, and remember -- challenges aren't all bad!
J.C. answers from New York on August 14, 2009
Wow, sounds familiar, my son is also 7 and is 43" and 42 lbs. It is hard. He was teased last year too and i cant stand it. My hubby is only 5'5 and me 5'4' so there is not alot of hope for a huge growth spurt here. My husband and I were both teased as little kids and YES we remember it but it made us who we are today and that is good loving people who dont tease others.
I just hope that my kids dont get broken by the teasing and it makes them stronger. at home we always tell them how GREAT they are and we dont focus on the height at all.
Good luck to you.
A.H. answers from New York on August 14, 2009
my friend is 4'8" and her hubby is 5'6". her one son is small but in the 20%.. her second son was in the 5th percentile.. she had the dr. check on him.. and they said after some tests.. that he would be about 5'. they went over a bunch of options.. and started to give him hormone shots.. which were stated about the age of 7 and will be given until he is in puberty.. about 12 or 13.. he will be about 5'6" they feel after all the shots are given.. which they feel is better than only 5' for a man. good luck.. it's a big decision.. but if you go with the shots.. you have to start asap.. go to the dr. and talk it over.. kids can be cruel.. and it's ok in this type of world for a girl to be small and cute.... but boys are looked down upon sometimes ... especially as others start to grow much quicker.. good luck.. it's a hard decision..