By Michelle Durham

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – There are several well-known retailers popular with tweens and teens that refuse to sell clothing above a size 10. What kind of impact does this corporate decision have on the delicate psyche of this age group, especially when you consider the fact that the plus-sized population is growing?

Clinical psychologist for Thomas Jefferson University Center for Integrative Medicine Dr. Anna Tobia says, “That is devastating for kids. That really hurts where they see themselves fitting in the world. It’s like saying you are not good enough to shop here. You’re not good enough for us. And you won’t be unless you lose weight. And it’s a very clear connection between value, weight and size.”

But she advises parents to seize upon this teachable moment, “to let them know that they are worth more than their size even if it’s greater than 10.”

She says this is the time to encourage your children to talk about their feelings. She says you should also touch base with their teacher to see what the atmosphere in the classroom is like so you can help your child develop coping skills for that too.

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