I'm sick of being judged by my waistline and I want my daughter to know there's more to life than dieting - TV3's Colette Fitzpatrick
Published 31/03/2014 | 08:41
TV news anchor Colette Fitzpatrick has revealed she is fed up talking about being judged by her waistline.
The Tipperary mother of two, who features on the cover on next month's Irish Country magazine, said women on TV are constantly appraised by their appearance and their weight.
The Herald columnist said she has become acutely aware of the way women are perceived, especially when they are in the spotlight, since she gave birth to her daughter Olivia nearly two years ago.
The TV3 presenter said: "People who appear in the media are being constantly reduced to the size of their waistline.
"But there's a lot more to us all than that.
"I've become acutely aware of it since having a daughter, because I'm hugely conscious of trying to raise her in as positive a way as possible.
"I don't want her getting the message that what she looks like is all that matters."
Ms Fitzpatrick said she is disturbed that young girls are bombarded with messages about the importance of their appearance.
"Talking about weight and appearance is a hobby horse of mine, but there are some staggering statistics out there," she said.
"There's a study that shows that at the age of seven, little boys and girls equally want to be the president.
"By the time they reach 15 there's a tiny percentage of girls who still want to be president because all they're getting is a diet of things telling them what they look like is all that matters.
"I ordered a T-shirt on Cafe Press the other day for Olivia that says, 'Why be a princess if you can be President?'"
Ms Fitzpatrick, who also has a three-year-old son, Milo, has no plans to add to her family.
She said: "I'm done -- 100pc done. I see myself in the trenches peeking out over the top. I'm nearly there and on the main battlefield.
"I know people say mistakes can happen, but I know how it all works, so mistakes will not be made."
And she added that she could never be a stay-at-home mother, despite having huge admiration for those women.
She said: "I think the vast majority of people make decisions around staying at home or going back to work based on finances.
"My best friend is a stay-at-home mother and I admire her deeply.
"She's absolutely brilliant, but I wouldn't do it for all the money in China.
"The National's Women's Council tried to put a figure on what a stay-at-home mother would earn -- so take an average of chauffeur, cleaner and gardener and they said at a bare minimum it's €60,000 a year."