I’ve touched on this topic as it pertains to my weight loss before, but people have known me as a fat girl since probably 1996. I’m 26 now and that was 13 years ago, so I’ve been fat roughly half my life. I am completely qualified to talk about all things related to fat people, as I’m a highly credible source of fat facts of life. Yet some of my (always the thin who are thin without *trying* mind-you) friends feel the need to tell me that I shouldn’t worry about my weight *at all.* Sure, they’re willing to tell me how good I look by comparison to my biggest size, because I’m actually at the weight I was in my freshman year of high school. I’ve been much fatter, and so by comparison I look “thin” in their eyes. BUT, I’m still fat. And the fat I have, by the very nature of how it’s distributed on my body, is very annoying for me to deal with.
I think people assume I want to lose those last 30 lbs. for vanity alone. But this is not the case. There are some grosser reasons I want the fat gone. People who’ve never had a weight problem don’t really understand how difficult it can be to live a normal, low-maintainence life as a fat person. I usually wear clothes that are flattering enough to hide the fat rolls and just kind of flow over them. I will wear a waist sincher or bodysuit if I’m really dressed up so my clothes look as good as possible, so people don’t always see the fat ROLLS and creases. They are much smaller now, some of them have dissapeared, but at 30 lbs. overweight I still have enough of them to cause me discomfort. The sweat in the summertime is gross. I feel like I have to bathe more frequently and I use baby powder to ease the discomfort of the sweating. The area between the thighs is another bone of contention for fat people. The way my fat distributes it causes a pouch of belly fat right over my “area,” which can cause uncomfortable chafing. I use baby powder to ease this, but really that’s pretty inconvenient, and I’d rather just skip that. That’s why being a normal size for my height would be such a huge relief in the way I live my life. It’s NOT just about VANITY.
But so what if some of it IS about vanity? The aesthetic I prefer is that of a lean physique when I’m talking pure, physical attraction. I am put off a little physically by overweight and obese men – and as a fat girl I would be almost expected to date a fat man. Therefore I feel I’d be a total hypocrite if I expected to have a man match that physique if I couldn’t also maintain such a physique. But the looks aspect isn’t all it is to me and my primary motivation is my health. Looking better is a part of it, but it’s not the whole thing. But dammit, if I feel good about looking better, I feel like I’ve earned that right. I feel like celebrating with a new, sexy or flirty outfit that fits my smaller body and being proud is not something I should feel shallow about doing.
But I digress…my entire point I think is that I have a few friends who have always been thin without actually working out or eating right/watching portions. Some of them eat like shit, actually, but they have that freakish metabolism that I’ve never had. Sometimes I think those friends of mine take their uber-metabolisms for granted, not really realizing that a person in my position really *is not* able to eat like that and have the physique I want (lean and muscular). I had to choose being healthy, happy, and leaner over the decadent foods in big portions. Also I don’t think those people really get how pathological and disordered my overeating was. I was good at projecting the “funny fat girl” image when really I was very depressed and fucked up inside. Essentially I was sick. But I guess some people did see me as “fat and happy.” Maybe that’s why it’s weird to them when I turn down certain foods offered to me these days, or just take a tiny bite of something decadent instead of eating the whole thing, or turn down going out drinking because I want to get up early and work out the next day. The only reason I get kind of miffled is that I get comments like, “you look fine NOW, don’t lose any more weight!” or “what you look like shouldn’t matter,” when it’s NOT ALL ABOUT MY LOOKS. IT’S ALSO ABOUT HOW I FEEL. I also have people tell me I’m not fat. I wonder if these people must think I’m stupid or blind. I’m not AS fat, but I’m still FAT. And I hate being fat. Why wouldn’t people be more happy for me? Ugh. I’ve also had a couple of people tell me that I was “being too hard on myself” for wanting to lose more weight than I already have. WTF? So does that mean I should never try too hard for anything and live an existence I feel is mediocre, just because a goal isn’t easy to obtain? Those same people would never say, “you shouldn’t try to get the best grades you can in school,” or “you shouldn’t try to get that promotion at work,” but they will say, “you shouldn’t get all the way down to a healthy weight that you’d feel really comfortable at – the bare minimum is fine!”
Namaste is a long time member and contributer to the famous My Fat Spouse Forum. If you've been looking through or lurking around this site at all you've probably figured out that Auntie Matilda does very little in the way of typing. Namaste still checks in from time to time. The last I heard she was down below a hundred and forty pounds.That puts her among the ranks of the millions among us who have defied the odds and become former fatties. This article has been reprinted from her Amy Loses and Wins blog. Namaste calls them as she sees them. She hasn't been posting for some time, but her older entries are well worth a read through. My Fat Spouse has only been a "blog" for a couple weeks now. In the coming days, weeks and months I hope to bring you a wide variety of material from a diverse selection of dieters and dreamers, husbands and wives who have found themselves asking questions about the role obesity plays in their lives and the lives of those they love.