Sunday, October 24, 2010

Life In the Fat Lane

I have to get a little serious here folks. There's something that's been on my mind for some time, and I wanted to share this with you.

Maybe you're seen my facebook photo. Maybe you're heard me talk about my weight in the past. But the simple fact is, I'm fat. And people seem to have no problem pointing that out to me- like I don't know. Being fat is something I deal with all the time and don't need to be reminded of, thank you very much.

Kids are especially insensitive, and though their comments hurt, I take them with a handful of salt instead of a grain because they're kids- and kids tend to blurt out anything that's in their heads. It's their nature.

It's the adults I want to smack upside the head sometimes. People really need to think before they speak, especially in front of others.

Here are some of the insensitive things that have been said/implied by strangers and friends that you should never utter to a fat person:

"Wow, you must eat a lot."- as subtle as this statement is, I overeat for my metabolism, but I don't actually eat a lot. I consume just as much as my husband does (he's a normal weight), but he has the metabolism of a jackrabbit.

"Is something wrong with you to be so...heavy?" - I suffer from hypothyroidism, which means my thyroid isn't producing enough stuff to make my metabolism work right. It doesn't help matters, but it's not the only reason I'm fat. Thanks for asking.

"Do you really think that will fit?" - It might, if I could wedge myself into that closet-sized dressing room. If I'm holding an item of clothing to try on, chances are I think it will fit. I'm usually a better judge of that than you are.

"You're eating an awful lot." If I asked you to be my diet buddy, or requested the assistance of the food intake police, this statement would be quite appropriate. However, it's not appreciated when I'm paying for my own meal and you're with me as a companion.

"Wow, you've gained weight!" Thanks, I never noticed. I was 110 lbs. this morning. Darn bee sting made me swell up. People who make this particular comment should be required to wear a fat suit for a week.

Some people use subtle gestures or body language to express their feelings about your weight. They might not actually say anything (at least until you bring it up), but a gesture is worth a thousand comments. Here are a couple of examples:

At a party someone was serving chips to those who were sitting around the room. She offered the chips to the person to my left, then walked past me and served the person to my right. "Excuse me," I said with a practiced smile. "I'd like some please." Only then did she offer me the chips, muttering "You don't really need these, honey." I don't really need to attend your party either, and I don't really need to give your daughter an engagement gift. Offer me the dang chips and mind your own business.

Sometimes I get dirty looks when I have something yummy like ice cream. It didn't matter that I hadn't had a cone in two years, or that I had just lost twenty pounds and decided to splurge on a few calories, but that people thought I was still 'too fat' to enjoy ice cream- like it was only for thin people. It makes me want to sit on their skinny little stick legs and break 'em. Or eat a bean burrito right before I sit on them- either one would work nicely for me.

(But I digress, that's a judgment on my own part. Skinny leg bones are the same size as my own- they just have less padding and girth.)

All I'm asking for is a little respect regarding my weight. I am not dirty, or a pig, and I'm certainly not a lesser being because I'm fatter than you. If I want help, I'll ask, otherwise just be my friend or offer me a smile if you don't know me. It will make us both feel good.


frazzledsugarplummum said...

People can be so unbelievably rude. Everyone deserves respect regardless of ANY of their features/look.

Linda said...

I just have to comment. I'm also the luxurious size (!!). What makes me the angriest is the implication that because I'm fat, I'm also very, very stupid. Doesn't matter how much education you have, how much experience you have--nothing. You're fat=you're stupid! Thanks for letting me vent. We'll both just have to hang in there!
Lurking Linda

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