I love the sentiments of the article below.
The anti-fat bias that the author describes has been the primary reason for my lifetime of dieting efforts. My choice has always been to work to avoid being the focus of such ill-treatment, even now that I'm an elderly female. I desire, intensely, for Society's' anti-fat bias not to be aimed toward me and my body. My past experiences with this prejudice is truly what motivates me to work so hard at maintaining my weight-loss.
Over the years it has become more and more common for our Culture to try and conceal its anti-fat bias through re-labeling ... by equating "Thin" with "Healthy", even though the current Scientific research shows that claim to be dubious.
This Isn’t a Tree, I’m Not a Kitten
by Ragen Chastain
I am so tired of this whole “Save the Fatties” campaign thing. Jillian Michaels thinks that it’s ok to verbally and emotionally abuse us because she’s “saving our lives”. Doctors ignore our symptoms (sprained wrists, broken bones, rashes, intense back pain, cancer) and treat our body size because “no matter what’s wrong with us we’ll be healthier if our bodies are smaller”.
Perfect strangers feel like they should question our food choices, make assumptions and comments about everything from our habits and health to our fitness for parenthood because it’s “for our own good”. People at the gym, including employees, assume that we are beginner exercisers and encourage us in our quest for weight loss without bothering to ask us how long we’ve worked out or if we’re even trying to lose weight because they want to “encourage us”. People, including journalists, actually think it’s ok to ask “Should we accept obesity?” Seriously. As if our fat bodies are someone else’s to accept or reject.
I won’t speak for any other fat people, but for me this needs to stop. If you do one or more of the things that I just mentioned, then this is for you:
This is not a tree, I am not a kitten, you are not a firefighter come to climb your little ladder and rescue me. My fat body is not a message to you that I am somehow incapable of taking care of myself or making decisions about my health, or that I am looking for unsolicited opinions about how to live my life.
As the brilliant Marilyn Wann has said, the only thing that you can tell from looking at my body is what size I am, and what your prejudices and stereotypes about my size are. Deal with them or don’t, that’s up to you; but I have no obligation to be the pillow that you beat with a tennis racket trying to work out your issues – trust me when I tell you that “emotional punching bag” is not just another free service I offer.
I am perfectly capable of making decisions about myself, my food, my exercise, my health, and anything else about my life. If I want your opinion on how to live my life, I swear you will be among the very first to know – but it’s safe for you to assume that this fatty doesn’t need saving.
Ragen Chastain. Dancer, Choreographer, Writer, Speaker, Fat Person,
blogging at danceswithfat.wordpress. com
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