Divorced Mom Forced To Take Photos Of Her Kids’ Meals Before & After They Ate To Prove She Was ‘Fit To Parent’ Her Own Children

The trauma has been far-reaching.

mom feeding two kids Jep Gambardella / Pexels

Divorce is a loss on all fronts. No matter how smooth the separation, it inevitably shifts the daily patterns of family life. When a divorce is contentious, the damage can be long-lasting, as one mom made clear by sharing her divorce story.

The divorced mom was forced to take photos of her kids’ meals to prove she was ‘fit to parent’ her own children.

In a TikTok titled “Custody Battle - The Damage of False Claims,” the unnamed mom, who goes by @lazy_gourmet, explained how she was court-ordered to document the fact that she was feeding her kids.




“For seven years, I took a photograph of every single meal that I prepared for my children,” she explained. “I took a before picture of their food on the plate and an after picture to show how much food that each child had eaten.”


RELATED: Divorced Mom Watermarks All The Photos Of Their Baby That She Sends Her Ex Because He Posts Them Online Like He Took Them

“This included the lunches that I packed. So, a picture of the inside of the lunch, and then when it came home from school. Also, if I brought something home from a restaurant, or if we went out to eat," she said. “Assuming that I had the kids about half the time, this was almost 4,000 pictures I took of their food.”

She explained the reason behind this documentation, sharing that it was part of the process of keeping receipts on her parenting, "based on some really serious and damaging accusations that my ex-husband was making."

Divorced Mom Forced To Take Photos Of Her Kids’ Meals Before & After They Ate To Prove She Was Fit To Parent Her Own ChildrenPhoto: Ivan Samkov / Pexels


The mom was put in a position where she had to "prove to a court system" that she was "fit to parent."

“I cannot tell you the amount of frustration, anxiety, just exhaustion, disheartening feelings that I had around having to take photographs, photo evidence, of food regarding my children,” she said.

She shared that the court, at points, “did seem to be leaning towards wanting to believe him, and then I would come back with the receipts, so, it just never got any legs to it.”

The mom’s story took a turn when she revealed that her kids later shared that there were prolonged periods of time when they weren’t eating while staying with her ex, their dad. 


“He made it clear that they were not to share this information with anyone,” she said. 

RELATED: 3 Ways The Most Responsible Parents Protect Their Kids During Divorce

She delved into the emotional fallout from having to document her kids’ food intake, describing the long-lasting effects she’s still navigating.

“I have PTSD from what I went through with the whole situation,” she said. She shared that despite her ex having recently passed away, she still was in the habit of taking photos of her kids’ food, “even after the fact, with this no longer being a risk.”

Divorced Mom Forced To Take Photos Of Her Kids’ Meals Before & After They Ate To Prove She Was Fit To Parent Her Own ChildrenPhoto: Ron Lach / Pexels 


“I had to sit down and think about why I would still be doing it,” she said. “It was just an automatic seven-year trigger ... and the psychological effect of feeling like I was an unworthy mother and having to document and prove to the world that I was doing my job, that I cared for my children, that I was feeding them.” 

Complex PTSD can occur if a person has prolonged exposure to traumatic events, as this mom and her kids experienced. The results of having PTSD can include a negative view of oneself, difficulties maintaining emotional regulation, or feeling like you’re always in fight-or-flight mode.

The mom spoke of having processed her anger and emotions surrounding this part of the custody battle, yet she noted that those feelings reappear from time to time.


She shared that being forced to prove that she was feeding her kids gave her a “diminished sense of self-worth.” Yet she stressed the strides she’s made toward healing, saying, “The awareness behind what it was and what it’s doing to me is the first humongous step.”

She offered an emotional call to action, saying, “If you’re going through a divorce and a custody battle, and you’re trying to win something over, or get something out of it, and the method you’re using is fabricating something about the other parent in order to achieve that, just know the risks of the damage that you’re doing to your kids, in the end.”

She shared that she hasn’t yet deleted the 4,000 photos she took, and is considering keeping them as a way to mark a past that’s no longer her family’s reality. 


By opening up and sharing her truth online, the mom highlighted the often harsh tactics that family courts utilize and the importance of actively taking steps toward healing.

RELATED: 5 Transformative Things I Wish I'd Told My Divorced Mom When I Was A Kid

Alexandra Blogier is a writer on YourTango's news and entertainment team. She covers social issues, pop culture analysis and all things to do with the entertainment industry.