When I was originally about to write this post, I had the word “fatphobic” in the title. I thought about it, and the world isn’t fatphobic. The world simply hates fat people. Being fatphobic means being scared of a fat person. Are people afraid that being fat is contagious? Here’s a definition of Fatphobia I found:
I really don’t believe that people are “scared” of fat people. Could they be afraid to get fat, sure I guess. That’s probably where anorexia plays a part and that’s too high above my pay grade. I am not a doctor or psychologist, so I’m not here to diagnose anyone. I am only here to give my thoughts and perspective.
I have a confession. I am a fat person and have been my entire life. Literally, since kindergarten, I have been chunky. Then after graduating high school, I really ballooned up, but at the time it was more medical reasoning behind my weight gain. Most people either won’t believe or don’t care about that though. As time went on, it got harder to want to lose it. We all know how hard it is, but its super easy and fun at times, to gain it.
Why hate Fat People?
Its difficult to say why many people have this hatred, but they like to think they have good reasons. I believe that this isn’t just an American thing, it’s a worldwide thing. Even though, there are so many overweight and obese people in the world, there is still this stigma and people look you at funny or with disdain. Its like you walk in a room and sometimes it does feel like all eyes are on you. Because of things you’ve experienced or seen through life, you feel this anxiety and start having negative thoughts.
We all use social media somewhat, but there are websites that I go on, where if the topic is about an overweight person or there is a photo of an overweight person, I steer clear of the comments. I know there will be comments that piss me off or make me upset. I’ve seen it all, from fat people don’t know how to push away from the table, all the way to fat people raise everyone’s health care rates. There are so many reasons why a person may be overweight, but people just see the exterior and think it gives them the right to judge, without knowing anything about the person.
Part of me feels like there are those who are miserable and the only way to get satisfaction is to makes others feel like they do. Another reason: why NOT hate fat people? What’s stopping someone from just going around making fun of fat folk constantly? Its easy to do and no one really cares.
There are so many websites now where people can post about a topic and hundreds or even thousands of people can react and comment on that topic. There really isn’t one that stands out more than any other with how awful the people can be. What made me want to finish this post after starting it ages ago, was the interaction I just had on one of these platforms.
The original post was about that show Hot Ones. You know, the one where a celebrity eats chicken until its too hot for them! Well, I made a comment that I wasn’t a huge fan of the guest on the show, because I found him sort of boring. Just my opinion. Nothing too crazy. Next thing I know, a person responds to me with a string of insults talking about my size and what not.
First of all, it was a male. I notice a lot of men like to negatively speak about women on social media, especially when dealing with their physical appearance. What I’m trying to understand, is what my body had to do with the comment I made? What made a person go out of his way to insult a person he doesn’t know anything about and who said nothing to him? It didn’t upset me in the sense of being sad, but it did make me angry. I think that’s a normal response for something unexpected like that.
That’s sort of the problem with social media though. People think they have the right to attack you from the comfort of their homes, behind a keyboard. I’ve been on it for so long, its kind of difficult to move away from it, but having an interaction like that, makes me want to move closer to deleting my accounts. Its like, if people see you’re fat while online, they think that gives them free reigns to say something negative about your size. You don’t even have to say anything to them, you just have to exist. That’s BS!
What makes this situation worse (for me at least), is the fact that I couldn’t respond how I wanted. The response I posted was vanilla to say the least, and I received a warning that my post may be flagged and removed. Well, of course that made me even more angry. Why does he get to insult me and I can’t defend myself or clap back in my way. I found a work around, but if one person does it, give the other person their time too!
Like I mentioned earlier, I am fat. Its been a lifelong struggle. I went to relatively small schools my entire life, one of them being an all girl school, but I never really got picked on like people may imagine. I was never the only chubby kid in school, so that helped. Going through high school was pretty normal. There may have been once or twice where name calling came out. One girl used to regularly call me Barney or Teletubbie cause I would wear purple, but in turn I called her Keebler, because she was small and reminded me of the Keebler elves. It was a mutual ribbing, with no ill intent involved. We’re still cool 20 years later, without the name calling.
After high school though, I gained an immense amount of weight due to health issues. I will write about that in another post, but I know it changed how my life went. I can see how gaining so much weight changed my style, my outlook on life, and especially my self-esteem. I feel like I kept more to myself because of my weight. I am not a partier per se, but I occasionally hang out with a small group of friends. I don’t like rides at theme parks, but is it because I was humiliated when the seat belt wouldn’t fit across me on a ride when I was younger? Who knows. I will say the older I get, the more I want to travel. I also want to do so comfortably. I hope that would mean that I travel first class everywhere, but if not, I can’t let my weight be a hindrance to how I live my life.
People are Awful
Of all the things you could come up with as to why so many humans hate fat people, its just that most people are awful. There’s a reason why dogs and cats are so beloved. Humans just seem to let you down over and over. Now, I know, this isn’t collective of the human race, but there are a lot of them. We do see the good out there sometimes, but other times, there’s just awful people.
If there were a study, that examined who people would save in an emergency, I can guarantee that fat people would lose. Let’s say a overweight person and a cat needed saving, the people taking the study has to decide which one they would save. It’s basically a no brainer that people would choose the cat. Fat people aren’t seen as people. We are seen as punchlines, props, and a waste. We are the easy targets. There is no line that can’t be crossed when talking about fat people, because the line has been erased.
Like I said before, no one cares how or why you’re fat, they just see fat. They assume and cast judgement. Most people think being mean to us will push us to want to lose weight, and that’s not how it works…at…all.
Causes of being fat
Now there are way too many reasons why a person may be overweight, fat, obese, whatever. In my case, its medical related. I know tons of people who have taken a short course of steroids for inflammation in the body or asthma. I had to take it for my liver. I was on steroids for years and I don’t know if you’ve ever seen a person with a moon face, but I had it with the body to match. I still haven’t lost the weight and I’ve been off the steroids for many years now. Like I said, losing weight is hard.
That’s just my case though. There are so many diseases, medications, and disorders that make people gain weight, its ridiculous. Thyroid issues, depression, sugar addiction (because yes, it is an addiction and no one should be arguing this). Its so much that can affect you. I honestly believe people that have drug addictions are still treated better than people with sugar addictions. Drug addicts get sympathy, sugar addicts get ridiculed. Its hard to quit both, but one gets treated differently than the other.
I think I’ve ranted long enough about this topic, but I feel there is still so much more that could said about. I just felt the need to come and speak about how I feel after the situation that happened to me. My hope is that people would be more aware and conscious of what they are saying to people and not be rude, but once again, like I said before, people are awful.