I’ve mentioned before my relationship with my own body and with fatness. Because I’m fat and I’ve pretty much always been fat, my self esteem and my self worth has frequently been hinged on the unwanted comments from others. I have avoided going to the doctor with legitimate concerns because I know there will be unnecessary comments about my weight. (Once went in about anxiety and depression – the nurse practitioner told me that I should lose weight?!)
Anyway, I’m not the only one to struggle with weight and others’ perception of my own body. And there are so many facts and pieces of information that actually tear down all the unnecessary comments and concerns that people might have about fat people.
Sarah Landrum, for example, wrote over at Adios Barbie about the 6 scary facts that prove the existence of size discrimination, including the fact that there is an unconscious bias against overweight patients from medical students and that there is an increased likelihood of conviction. Over at Mic, Julianne Ross wrote about the 9 facts that shatter the biggest stereotypes about people who are fat, including the fact that:
Fat shaming, though cruel, is another form of bullying that often goes unchecked because people believe that it will spur others to lose weight, and, as the logic typically goes, become healthier. This is misguided first and foremost because there’s nothing inherently wrong with being fat… And even if there were, fat shaming doesn’t help people lose weight.
Justin Dennis also brings up the fact that fat shaming doesn’t actually help people lose weight like many seem to think it might. In her video, she talks about that and unpacks what fat really means. (transcript)
Ultimately, it’s taken me a long time to get to be even kind of okay with my body. I still frequently struggle with my self esteem, still wonder about how others perceive me because of my fatness. But I’m at the point in my life where I realize that despite all the fat shaming, my life is worthy. I’m still human even if I don’t fall into what society deems beautiful. And that’s also true of so many other people who struggle with their weight as well. I think that Marie Southard Ospina said it best though in an article she wrote about coming to love her fat:
I don’t have a recipe to falling in love with your body. I don’t have an easy button you can press to feel fat and flabulous. I think it’s hard. It’s really freaking hard. We don’t live in a society that makes it easy. We don’t live at a time when fat is considered beautiful by the mainstream, so we have to fight to make people realize the beauty in it. And fighting is never easy, but it’s worth it.