Posted by CurvyAndCurious
Dear Curvy And Curious,
Recently I lost 5-10 pounds. I wasn’t eating healthy, I wasn’t working out, I was just stressed out of my mind and the weight just fell off. With my body type, 5-10 pounds is a recognizable difference. All my friends, my family, and acquaintances commented about it.
I’m sick to my stomach over it. All these people, and there has been many, are trying to compliment me. What they are doing, unbeknownst to them, are judging my weight, saying essentially, “you look good now, better than you did before.” I think more people should be aware of their comments – what they mean and the effect they can have. Once I gain this weight back, which I undoubtedly will because I did not lose it in a controlled healthy way, will they remark that I have gained weight? Of course not. Commenting that someone gained weight is wrong because it is a judgement on their bodies. But commenting that someone has lost weight? Oh that’s just fine.
My sister has recovered from an eating disorder that nearly killed her. When she first started losing the weight, I was among these people, “Melissa*, you look great! Keep up the good work!” blah blah blah.. I didn’t know the “good work” was her vomiting after her every meal. Every comment I made to her, and the comments by other people towards her, encouraged her, and the direct focus on her weight fueled her insecurity, her mental disease, putting weight as the topic of discussion. I have learned from this experience never to remark on someone’s shape, and to try avoid looking at their outward appearance entirely. Corney, but it’s the soul that matters.
People make their comments about my weight, “Oh wow! You look like you lost a lot of weight! So skinny!” and I nod, I pity them..and I try not to let them get into my head. I never say thank you, because although they do not mean me harm, this is not a compliment.
I had not weighed myself in years. When I did, it was sporadic. Now, despite my best efforts to keep these people out of my head, I notice I am checking the scale, noticing the number.. the one pound up or down. Because all of these remarks.. I know what people first notice about me. I did not care about gaining the weight back, but now……do I? I do well and overall don’t care, but the judgement and continuous focus and remarks have made it difficult.
I lost it in an unhealthy way.. and society has told us that how you lose weight doesn’t matter.. as long as you are thinner.
I wanted to share this with you because I admire the work you have done on yourself and the work you have done for others. This is not a “fat” problem, or a “skinny” problem we deal with. Making remarks/judgement on appearances is just plain wrong, and I wish more people would see this. Look more into the eyes of people rather than their physical appearance. I have a healthy mindset, but if I did not these peoples remarks would drive me into an anxious and dangerous life style, the way it did my sister.
Food for thought. Thank you for your contributions in this field.. more people should be opening their minds and accepting who they are.
Thanks for sharing your story of confidence and finding yourself. This is what Curvy And Curious is about! Hang in there girl, you’re never alone.
Stay Curvy and Keep Curious
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Posted by CurvyAndCurious
So it seems like all I hear about with teens these days (besides childhood obesity) is bullying. I always wonder to myself, “I was fat in high school, why don’t I feel like I was bullied.” I soon realized the answer: I was the bully.
Middle school was hard – I was bullied, but not for being fat. I was made fun of for having my own style. (Having pink hair at the age of 12 isn’t exactly traditional). I dressed “goth,” so some people spread rumors that I was smoking crack in 7th grade. Even though I wasn’t being harassed about my body, I was at my most insecure state in my life. I was too embarrassed to eat in the lunchroom because I didn’t want my boyfriend to see hos fat girlfriend eating…. anything. I would go hungry and then binge and purge. Though these internal behaviors were horribly unhealthy, I believe that the fact that people cared enough to make up these ridiculous stories, rather than bully me for being fat, helped me build my confidence for the future.
That future confidence took a while to set in. As puberty went on, I started cutting myself, smoking cigarettes, drinking alcohol… anything to overshadow the fact that I was fat. I would have rather been viewed as a bad-ass than “the fat girl,” and it worked.
High school was freakin’ fantastic! Well, somewhat. I had a lot of friends, who were all fat chicks too (or felt fat). We would joke about being fat, share our fat girl problems, share clothes, it was fabulous. Having “Fatourage” (OK, I made that up) definitely was the key to building my self-confidence. Problem is – I built up a bit too much and became a real bitch.
To the few haters our clique had, rather than letting them get me down, I would use my strength and intimidation to avoid being bullied. When the local punk rock band came out with a song called ‘Fat Chicks Suck’ that went viral, what did I do? I punched the kid in the face. What did he do? Made a website about me and how fat and annoying I am. All I could do was laugh, thinking, “Dumbass, I punched you in the fucking face. Who won this battle?”
That wasn’t the only time I used my size to intimidate others. On another occassion, a boy and his friends were yelling fat-insults to my best friend (why not me???) so what did I do? Caught him off-guard and put him in a choke hold in the stairwell, and explained to him that he had no idea what was coming to him if he kept fucking with us. Lets just say I didn’t hear a peep from him again.
So those are examples of what I would call “Defensive Bullying.” But in order to keep up my bad-ass reputation, I couldn’t just bully back. I had to pay it forward too. This wasn’t easy, considering I was the fattest girl in school. I look back now and think of some horrible things I did to people just to feel better about myself.
Here are my examples of my “Offensive Bullying”
The only big girl not in our entourage was made fun of by the whole school. I would pretend to be her friend to get private dirt on her and spread it to the rest of the school. She told me she wore a size 18 and we made a huge deal about her size, while in the mean time, I was a size 22!
I broke up with a boy at school, and every time my friends and I saw him, we would call him “Goat” because of his beard and make Goat noises…. ok a litle funny but still mean.
I could go on and on, but I think those three are enough to show what an insecure bitch I was. Due to some personal troubles (totally unrelated to bulling), I ended up leaving school my junior year, started a career, and graduated early from night school. I work in the Human Service field, and have been since I was 17. Now my life is spent improving the lives of others rather than trying to ruin them. I think that removing myself from the “group mentality” by leaving school was a turning point, but it wasn’t until I was about 20 that I realized in order to be completely free from my ignorant, angry past, was to let go of my cohorts and star over, on my own.
Now I am a strong advocate for disabilities, mental illness, obesity, bullying, racism, and pretty much anything related to human rights. Bully turned Humanitarian. Who would’a thought?
- Is your child being bullying for being OVERWEIGHT? What you can do! (kellygetthin.wordpress.com)
- What if I’m Being Bullied? (illustrationstoencourage.wordpress.com)
- Cyber-bullying brings horror home (bbc.co.uk)
Tags: Anxiety, BBW, Body, body image, BULLY, bullying, Child, clothing, confidence, curvy, cutting, depression, Facebook, fat, fat chicks, full figure, group mentality, high school, Highschool, human behavior, insecurities, middle school, MySpace, overcoming, plus size, puberty, self esteem, thick, Violence and Abuse, Youth