Being a fat person has exposed me to the widest variety of insults and jokes. Whether they’re said to my face or behind my back, whenever someone really wants to insult or get to someone, they comment on their weight. Being fat has become the ultimate haven of experiencing below-the-belt insults.
It also seems that when one is fat, the quality of the person goes down. People judge character based on weight. Don’t believe me? Let’s take some of my own experiences. I was recently called fat via social media by a chain smoker. Of course, when someone speaks up to defend a fat person, the comeback is “well they shouldn’t be promoting an unhealthy lifestyle” as they light another cigarette.
Ironic, isn’t it? Perhaps we need to look in the mirror before judging.
Furthermore, who gave thin people the badge that gives them the right to be called good people and shame fat people? Shaming based on size has become huge (excuse the pun) in our modern society. There’s fat shaming and skinny shaming. It appears that insulting one’s appearance is much more powerful than commenting on the person’s actual character.
For example, I was made to feel insignificant, basically not intelligent enough for certain endeavors that I’ve chosen to embark upon by my chain-smoking buddy. Even though I have a Masters degree in my chosen path, I wasn’t smart enough or qualified enough, and then proceeded to comment on my weight and how I needed to spend my time and energy on becoming less of a fatass.
This is where, “Nothing else matters because I’m fat” comes from.
I’ve done mission work in third world countries, I’ve worked with special needs children, I’ve volunteered hundreds of hours into non-profits and charities, I’ve worked with inner city children…but I’m fat. Therefore whatever I do is moot because I am large.
Of course, this isn’t true. Some of the most intelligent people I know are overweight and/or obese.
When someone posts a photo of themselves, and they’re overweight and celebrating their body image, the comments I see from naysayers/trolls the most are, “You shouldn’t be promoting an unhealthy lifestyle” or “You’re celebrating that overeating is okay.” Here’s the thing, of course being overweight is unhealthy. If someone feels fabulous at 500 pounds, that’s awesome! If someone is 500 pounds, eats healthy, exercises every day…that’s great! For me, I know the [my] human body isn’t meant to carry the amount of weight I’m carrying. But ya know what? It’s no one’s business but my own. Other people’s weight and health is nobody else’s business but my own. I sit in an airplane seat just fine so it shouldn’t bug the person next to me. Yeah, I might be an awkward sight at the gym, but at least I’m there. People are fat for a variety of different reasons ranging from health to emotional. Is it my business? No. Nor is the reason why I’m fat is anyone else’s business but my and my family’s. Weight is a personal concern.
If I’m a bad person, tell me I’m a bad person, don’t comment on appearance. Throwing insults takes more than just appearances (pun intended).
Like most people, fat people (or fit/skinny/chubby/bulky/curvy/etc people) are not perfect. Even people who are comfortable in their own skin aren’t perfect. We all come from different backgrounds, we’ve made mistakes, we’ve hurt others, we’ve been hurt, we regret our actions…it’s all a part of being human. This is a journey of mankind.
What needs to be looked at are the people who feel like they have to insult weight and body image in order to hurt others. Maybe they’re feeling so insignificant about themselves that they have to project their own hurt and insecurities onto others. They aren’t worth your time or taking up space in your head or heart. Are they bad people? I don’t know. I’m biased. Considering that words have so much power, a fat joke can make a person purge after eating, and self-confidence can be instantly shattered with a fat comment. Like being fat means that they’re less of person.
Guess what? No matter what your body size is, you are not less of a person.
What makes you less of a person is the fact you have to tear others down by commenting on their body image to make yourself look powerful. Making memes and insulting photos of fat people is nothing more than a pissing contest to see who can be the most powerful. People who comment on appearances in order to make themselves look good are the lowest on the totem pole emotionally and they have to make sure that someone else feels bad too, because hey, misery loves company. Think about it, have you ever seen or heard an emotionally happy, sane, and healthy person go around spewing negativity like that?
Instead of commenting on body image as a reflection of inner character, perhaps we just need to start looking at the person beyond the fat and beyond the physique. Being fit doesn’t automatically make someone a good person, nor does being fat automatically make someone a bad person.
If someone calls you fat for the purposes of making you feel bad, let it slide off your back (easier said than done, I know). Because the person who said the hurtful comment is most likely feeling insignificant in some way, and in their minds, insulting you gives them power. Don’t give them that power.
Weight does not equal character.