Are We More Than What We Weigh?

July 18, 2007 at 1:24 am | Posted in Anorexia, Binge Eating, Bulimia, Compulsive Eating, Compulsive Exercising, Cute, Discrimination, Eating Disorders, EDNOS, Equality, Fat, Fat Acceptance, Hate, Health, Kristin Bell, Obsessions, Purpose, Shame, Thin | 4 Comments

cutefat

Hello to everyone who visits! Thank you for stopping by! Today I think I’ll talk some more about fatness and why I use the term fat instead of obese or overweight. There was a time when I only used the term overweight. I was afraid of using the term “fat” because it was like a four letter word to me. I’ve also never liked the term obese because I don’t like the way it sounds and when it is used it is always meant in a negative and punishing way. The term “obese” is often used by the medical establishment along with their other favorite term “morbidly obese.” And I hate both of those terms, especially the latter.

I probably qualify as “morbidly obese,” but I do not use that to describe myself, because it is ugly and it implies that I am on the verge of death. I hope I’m not on the verge of death. I suppose I could drop dead at any moment or get run over by a bus or something, but I like to hope that I will live a while longer. I don’t feel like I should have to justify my health with a list of all the ways in which I am healthy either. I mean, what is health anyway? Can I run up a flight of stairs? No. I’m not athletic in any way. I know I should be more active, but that is aside from the fact that I am fat. There have been times in my life when I have been more active and I guess there have been times when I have been less active. There are also plenty of skinny people who are couch potatoes too, but they don’t get yelled at by their physician every time they go to the doctor and told they are going to drop dead any minute and they don’t get treated like a fat freak by the medical community.

Fatness is what it is. It is a conglomeration of fatty tissue. That is all. Yet we make it into reasons for persecuting other people. We tell ourselves we are ugly and horrible and lazy and whatever else when we put on a few pounds. We think being on one side of the scale or other gives us the right to treat others with shame or worse.

I say I am fat and now it isn’t a four letter word for me. It just describes who I am. Like someone else might be thin or have brown hair or green eyes. To say someone is overweight implies that they are not right and they are heavier than they “should” be. It is ridiculous. And I won’t even use the terms obese and morbidly obese. They are ugly, shame-making terms used by an oppressive weight industry and a medical establishment that still has not proven that fat alone is the culprit we are made to believe it is.

And even if it is “unhealthy” to be fat, what does that mean anyway? Isn’t it more unhealthy to be a bigot? Is it “healthy” to be obsessed with your weight for your entire life—forever counting points and calories and fat grams and carbs and weighing your food and pushing it aside and not eating it and eating small meals six times per day and going on liquid diets or all grapefruit diets or all meat diets or no meat diets and weighing yourself every day, every hour, every week, everywhere without clothes, with clothes but not the heavy ones without shoes to reach that goal you set for yourself like the most IMPORTANT thing you can do for yourself and the WORLD is to lose 300, 150, 50, 25, 5, 2 pounds! Forget that people are dying of AIDS all over the world. Forget all the wars and fighting. Forget the landmines lying around waiting to kill people. Forget the homeless. Forget about healthcare for the uninsured. Forget about educating children and adults worldwide. Forget about nuclear proliferation. Forget about female genital mutilation. Forget about global warming. Forget about people being killed for loving someone of the same sex. Forget about everything that might make a difference and might matter and instead, be sure to follow the diet industry’s orders to focus all of your energy and time on pushing away that dessert so you don’t end up hideous and gross and fat. Forget about the world and focus on losing those 5 extra pounds that will make you into: what? Do you think you are perfect now because you weigh 5 less pounds? Do you think you are healthier? More superior than those fat bastards? Do you think it will really prolong your empty and unfulfilling life that much more? What are you going to do with your extra time on Earth? Count calories? Make fun of fat people? Brag about how you lost 5 more pounds?

I’m being too harsh. It isn’t your fault. The world tells you to obsess about your body. The world tells you to feel shame for your body: the bumps, the curves, the lumps, the farts, the smells, the gurgles and the hunger. We aren’t supposed to FEEL any of it. We are supposed to tighten in our guts, tuck in our flabby parts, exercise until we feel the burn and above all else, believe that there is one perfect body shape or form out there. The truth is there isn’t.

And when you are lying in bed next to someone who loves you for who you are, you can bet that they love every inch of the body you have even if you despise it. Just try to remember that. You are more than your body. And like many people have said before, so that I have to quote them “you are more that what you weigh.” Here’s hoping you live a good, long, fat life!

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4 Comments »

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  1. That’s fantastic! I’ve never thought about it that way. I always use the word “overweight” to describe it because “fat” sounds like it’s mean. But you are absolutely right— over weight implies that they aren’t “right”. Some people are naturally “fat”. Some people have a natural set point of a BMI that is above 25. And for them to be in the BMI 20-25 range, they would have to restrict calories, walk around hungry, and possibly not get enough nutrition. Also, some people are naturally “underweight”.

    I hate how our society equate health with thin-ness. About 7 years ago, all I wanted to do was to learn how to eat healthy and exercise to be healthy. Everything I read told me to count calories and lose weight in order to acheive health. I was already a size 4, but I knew I wasn’t healthy, so I made weight loss a goal.

    The idea that thin=fit is nonsense. There are many people who fall into the overweight category who are super fast runners or extremely athletic. It’s just another way for our society to stereotype and be prejudiced.

  2. Elizabeth: Thank you kindly for your wonderful comment. :)

  3. kristin, you are an inspiration and i see you in future as going around the country advocating for the rights of the FAT! i love your commentary, your videos, you are a bright and introspective modern woman. (remember this one: ‘too bad, but she has such a pretty face….what a shame…) lmao! good on ya! go gf!

  4. Rosemary: Thank you so much for your kind words! I really appreciate your support!


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