Nonfat vs Whole


I wasn’t sure what to write about today, so I went through my list (!) of possible blog ideas that I created last year and chose one that seems relatively painless.  It’s about my prejudice against thin people.

Yes, us big people can also be guilty of size-ism!  Shocking, I know.  Let me clarify what my prejudice is against them – I assume that they are judging me for being fat.  Some of them probably are, some of them most likely think I am gross and disgusting and ugly.  Some of them probably wonder why I let myself get this way and why and I don’t fix it. 

But not every single fit or thin person is judging me.  Not everyone who is “nonfat” is looking at me and making judgments.  And even if they are, I’m just as guilty, since I am also prejudging them based on their size.

It can be very hard to enter a room full of strangers when you are self-conscious about your size.  And it’s even harder when you assume that everyone in the room is thinking mean and nasty thoughts about you.  But how shameful am I to also think mean and nasty thoughts? 

I think it’s a weird defense mechanism. If I am already prepared for people to judge me unfairly, then I won’t be hurt or upset by it, it won’t surprise me.  In my mind, I have already dealt with their criticism and gotten over it.  I’ve armed myself against possible attacks. 

But feeling like this is actually more harmful to me than anything they could possibly think or say.  I’m prejudging people and making assumptions, and they are hateful and mean.  And I don’t want to be that person.  I want to assume that anyone I meet will love me and adore me and think I’m hilarious and a good dresser, and not care about my size.  And if they care about my size?  Then they aren’t really someone I need in my life.


4 responses »

  1. Wouldn’t that be something if we could all enter a room full of strangers and assume they will only judge us for what we know to be our awesome qualities? I think that would change how we interact with others and in turn how they interact with us.

    I sense a challenge! I will try to remember to put aside negative snap judgements and look for something positive about people when I feel the urge to judge them.

  2. You are so wise and so right on. I just had a similar conversation with Skip while in Brazil when old friends were reaching out to see me (and meet Nicholas) and I was dreading it, thinking of excuses for not seeing anyone.
    In reality I did not want them to see how fat I have gotten. Like me being overweight automatically meant I am a loser and have had a horrible life and deserved nothing but their pity…there I am not worth their time and friendship.

    Skip pointed it out that I am NOT a loser, my life is NOT horrible and I have actually done a lot of cool stuff in life. That perhaps, they wanted to see me because they are friends and missed me and wanted to give me a hug. Perhaps they wanted to meet because many, many, years ago I touched their lives and made it a little better, even if for a short while, and they remembered that.

    I had no response. The fact is that I had no idea what they were thinking but I know that the “fat rhetoric” is a creation of my mind, a reflection of my insecurities that I too eagerly transfer (and blame) to others.



  3. Leslie – I love the challenge!

    Deb – you and I have many of the same issues that we have talked about, so it’s good for both of us to remind each other how awesome we are, regardless of size!

  4. you are totally right, i am quilty of the same thing. and i make terrible snap judgements, like someone is “cheerleader looking” i immediately dont like them, they are mean and judgy and stuck up. and really arent i the one being that way?

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