So I had a very large unexpected response from my last post “4 big reasons you look fat in photographs.” With 450K + views, I felt pretty proud of my marketed title, but then instantly nervous that more than just my friends were reading this and seeing these (what I felt) God awful photos of myself posted up online. Oh well, hopefully it was helpful. I got a lot of positive responses but when the negative responses started coming in, I don’t think I was prepared for those. I had merely just posted something I wrote on Facebook for my friends and suddenly I had not just a few people getting on there to tell me ” Why don’t you put down the fork, then you wouldn’t be so fat” or “Women in the photos only look fat for one simple reason – THEY ARE” and another ” Why don’t you eat healthy and start exercising!” A WHOLE can of worms opened simply because of the word FAT. Maybe if I had titled it ” How to pose better for pictures” no one have had the balls to say those things. In fact, maybe then no one would have read it and I would have gone about my day. But they did and they in fact don’t know me. The “start exercising” comment made me laugh because I workout 4-5 times a week….maybe they meant I should be doing everyday? or the “put down the fork” commenter likely didn’t know that I suffered from bulimia from middle school through college and ruined my endocrine system.
I largely disagreed that these comments where related to taking better pictures and they protested saying that standing ideling by was going to make us end up in some type of diabetic, atery clogged death. ” Are you telling me that you are not overweight?” one girl says ” I have a real problem with people not owning up to having agency over their own bodies” Assuming that I don’t ” I’m tired of our culture making excuses stating that we should love ourselves no matter what we look like, or how unhealthy we are. ” Now this is where it got interesting for me. That loving yourself somehow was tied to what you look like. That your value resides in your weight and your looks, not in your head or heart. I stand in complete opposition with this view as she continued ” I don’t think big is beautiful …So you go girl, you and your friends cheering your fat acceptance on.” She ended her comment. Burn.
Wow. At first I got mad and puffed up my defenses but that didn’t last because all my old triggers poured in. The mean words I used to tell myself, were swirling around in my mind while the tears hiding behind my eyes, I could no longer hold in. I looked in the mirror and no matter how much confidence you have , it still hurts when someone calls you fat. Having 10 people that day go at it telling me who they thought I was, really hurt. “I’m going to shut down my blog…” I thought for a millisecond but realized It’s the price of exposing yourself and making yourself vulnerable. ” Wow, this must be what it feels like the be a Kardashian (except they have millions of dollars to cry into.)” But when I stopped crying and put a layer of thick skin on, I was sad – but not for the same reason. This comment told me a lot about her and anyone else that felt the need to post something mean. I felt bad for them. I felt sad that a some point they felt like I did because someone else called them names or made them feel less than a person and that insecurity they now have has manifested in this type of poison. I felt sorry for them.
Some believed my post about how to look more flattering in pics was somehow a secret mission or reason to circumvent health bizarrely I don’t know the logic that goes into that. That skinny or fat, you can take a bad picture. That even if you are working on your fitness at SOME POINT you WILL take a picture. That no one waits until they are their ideal weight, to be in a picture. So how can it hurt to learn how to look better? But still the argument was simply put “Fat people need to know they are fat and someone needs to tell them!” Now lets think about that. The conversation would go like this ” So you are telling me I’m fat , for my safety because you care? Wow how nice and kind of you. I shouldn’t have reacted defensively instead your ‘advice’ should have been appreciated, because I know that you – a complete stranger , really care about my well being.”
That makes sense ( if you can’t tell that’s dripping in sarcasm ).
Someone argued the fact with me that it should be socially acceptable to call someone fat because it would actually motivate them into better eating and working out. However the rest of us know, that isn’t true. Hurting self esteem only perpetuates the dysfunction, not improves it. How could this post about taking better pictures spike such an interest in people, feeling it was their duty to let me know I ( or anyone else) was fat? It brought out a much larger issue.
So lets turn the tables. Would it be socially acceptable for me to call you ( or anyone) an idiot? It hold about the same insult weight in connotation. That your stupidity and ignorance is going to ultimately lead to your death and that your lack of REAL concern about people’s well being is largely whats more wrong with this country, a even further leading epidemic than obesity. Would that be ok? Would you feel like I cared for you, and that your best interest was at heart? NO . See how that works? It’s super convient to justify being incredibly rude to someone based on the fact that we lived brainwashed in a society that thinks ” fat hating” is ok. Well it’s not. Not for women, men , Hell I won’t even call my dog fat because it’s not nice.
Going back to the whole looks thing – Beauty and weight are largely separate. Society interprets it to be the same thing. I can think I’m beautiful and fat – because my weight holds no merit on my beauty and it shouldnt for anyone. People protesting that big women can’t be beautiful is simply ignorant. Beauty is in the eye of the beholder and just because someone has been brainwashed by the industry to believe that weight and beauty are the same things doesnt make it true. I personally believe that someones INSIDES makes them beautiful and that is my right to decide just as it was the girls right to decide that big wasn’t beautiful to her – I can’t argue with that. But what I can argue with is that we are SO much more than what we are on the outside.
Now let me get existential real quick. We are all made of energy. We all have the same atoms that make up the matter, the vibrating energy that makes this bag of bones a person. A human with feelings that loves , feels, hurts. What is physical is merely a shell of our true beauty. What we wear, what we look like, has nothing to do with what is on the inside. Now what you look like can affect how you feel on the inside and I know that is why everyone is so consumed about how they look with good reason. But everyone has qualities on the inside that can make them extremely beautiful, healthy or attractive and or unattractive, unhealthy or ugly. You can be thin but a stressed out, high anxiety, vengeful mess and the fat girl happy eating her ice cream is going to be more beautiful. (Anyone seen Shallow Hal?” Some of the ugliest people I’ve encountered I’ve never seen – but there words on a keyboard tells me more about their thoughts that lets me know exactly what they might look like on the inside.
You don’t know someone’s life from looking at them. It’s like looking at someones Instagram’s without acknowledging that they only post an edited version of their life. Be kind to people, because Karma can be a real bitch if you are.