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I found this link* through a friend, and if you have the time to click on over and read, you really should. It's full of links and some really righteous anger about what being raised in a fat-phobic society can do to a person's health and well-being.



* The original author has given the A-OK to link this piece

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( 5 comments — Leave a comment )
furious_mold
Oct. 28th, 2008 01:59 am (UTC)
After the crap you've gotten from those losers over at Craigslist, I would be on the streets raising hell. Those emails were just plain mean and uncalled for. Whatever happened to, "If you don't have something nice to say, don't say anything at all"? Your ad was straightforward and honest, most people can't even be like that on internet personal sites.

So, I've never been "fat" and I've never been extremely thin. I've always been somewhere in the middle. Sometimes I feel like being in the middle is a no-no in this society, and I find myself negatively affected by the whole fat-phobic thing more often than I'd like to be. I'd like to think that I'm smart enough to ignore advertising and media influences, but it creeps in...because it's everywhere and it doesn't look like it's going to go away any time soon.

My husband's father was morbidly obese. Before he passed away, he was trying to lose weight. He changed his diet and ate healthier than most of the people I know. Years of depression had made him think he wasn't good enough, but he made a lot of changes during the last year of his life. When we went out to breakfast with him every Saturday people stared with horror when they saw him walk into the restaurant and tried to see what he had on his plate. "How much is that fat guy gonna eat?!!" I hated that so much. I would stare back at those people. They had no idea how interesting and brilliant he was. Doctors would tell him to "just get that surgery" even though he couldn't afford anything like that. He didn't want that kind of invasive surgery. Any time he asked a doctor for advice on how to lose weight, they told him to get that surgery. No one ever sat down with him and talked to him about nutrition. They just treated him like a freak show. He started learning about nutrition on his own and made huge changes. Unfortunately, his heart wasn't strong enough.

Sorry, I just went off there.

OK, now I'll read that link.

hopita
Oct. 28th, 2008 03:42 am (UTC)
No apologies necessary -- rant away.

My favorite link from that post (thus far; haven't had a chance to check them all out yet) is this one, which does a great job of breaking down all the "but fat KILLS!" nonsense.

One of my favorite parts:
Even in some progressive circles — which are usually known for not hating entire groups of people because of their appearances, not thinking what other people do with their bodies is anybody’s beeswax, and not uncritically accepting whatever moral panic the media tries to whip up, but wev. Fat is different!

As far as Craigslist goes, I keep trying to remind myself that all I'm trying to find is one really good one, and that if twenty-nine out of thirty replies suck, well, it's still golden as long as that last one is a prize.

That's what I *try* to remember to tell myself, anyway.

I'm sorry people were douchebags to your father-in-law. FWIW, these are the same douchebags who would have stared at you forty years ago had you been dining with a man who was Black.
furious_mold
Oct. 28th, 2008 03:29 pm (UTC)
Even though his weight was so extreme that it was causing health and movement problems for him, I wish he had a little bit more time to make the changes to reach a physically manageable weight. I'll always feel that way, I suppose. It's not fair.

Yeah, when we had our lively and intelligent discussions at breakfast I kind of felt like the people eavesdropping on the conversations were thinking, "How dare that fat guy sound so educated and smart!" In many ways, I realize that I was more sensitive than he was - but it was kind of hard to ignore the staring - especially from people who fit the description of belonging to a "progressive circle"

I hope you find a good egg in that Craigslist.
varro
Oct. 28th, 2008 11:20 pm (UTC)
I'm not going to say that I have a weight problem as much as a laziness problem - I don't exercise enough.

I realize there's a point below which I simply cannot go below - for me it's about 210 lbs. (I'm about 240-250 now.) At that weight, I'm in as good a shape as I'll be for anything less than competitive athletics.

All people can do is try to stay active. Weight isn't anything but a number.
hopita
Oct. 29th, 2008 03:01 am (UTC)
I was thinking about that in the pool today. I mean, I swim 5x a week -- how many of my skinny friends can say that?
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