Thursday, October 30, 2008

Fat Haters

Everybody seems to hate fat people. We are gluttons, we are lazy, we aren't trying. We clutter up the scenery with our fat rolls and we take up too much space in our seats. People point, they stare, they roll their eyes. They tell their children not to eat candy because "then you'll grow up to be like THAT." Obesity is a condition that will get you judged, for sure, and while not everyone is like this, it seems like we are still allowed to be the butt of all jokes and it's okay. After all, it's our own fault we are fat.

A couple of months ago I came across this article called "Ted Nugent's Latest Diatribe: Obesity." When I read it, I knew I needed to blog about it. But it felt like a kick in the gut. It made me feel ashamed, embarrassed... and then angry. What right does he have to judge me based on my size?

"Obesity is a manifestation of a cultural depravation in its most vulgar and displeasing-to-look-at form. And it's suicide as a lifestyle."(And for those of you who aren't sure, depravation, aka depravity, means moral corruption).

"[Obesity is] a liability," he says. "You have chosen to be a liability to yourself, your family, your neighborhood, and this country."

Nugent is in favor of a 'fat tax' and a surcharge for fatties who take up too much space on an airplane. Punish the fatties, so they will stop eating so much. He is sick of looking at us, sick of dealing with us. Hey, he said we are the "MOST VULGAR and DISPLEASING-TO-LOOK-AT" form of moral corruption. I guess that includes child rapists, serial killers, abusive parents who beat their children and then lock them in closets to starve to death, and pedophiles. Nice to know where we fat people rank.

He concludes, "Somebody's got to go, 'You can't eat that. You're way too fat.'" Gee, thanks Ted, for pointing that out. But guess what? That 'Somebody' isn't you. What you need to do is shut your trap and work on your rude mouth and your judgemental, hateful attitude. And if ANYONE is going to tell me I am "way too fat" and can't eat something, it is ME. No one else.

I get enough of this attitude in my life that I don't need to hear it spewed in the news or on TV. Just the other day I was chatting online with a bunch of strangers who have no idea who I am or that I have a blog. I was expressing that I have been having difficulty losing weight over the last few months. A chat room full of 20 people immediately advised me to eat less. Get off my fat butt and walk a little. If you want to lose weight stop eating so much. It went like this:

Them: You have to quit eating donuts. And drinking sodas.
Me: I don't eat that stuff, I drink lots of water and green tea. Matter of fact I eat healthy almost every meal but then sometimes I cave and eat a bunch of cheese or something.
Them: You have to get rid of the cookies and candy, and stop eating fast food.
Me: I have done that. That's why I am not gaining weight anymore. I bike 3-6x a week and lift weights 2-3x a week.
Them: You're lying. No one can exercise that much and be fat.
Me: I'm not lying, I am trying hard...
Them: She isn't even trying. Losing weight is not rocket science.
Me: I eat a lot of vegetables...
Them: Sure you do, LOL. Hey this fat chick says she works out and eats healthy and is still fat. LOL. Hey, fat chicks smell. You need to join Jenny Craig.

Yeah, nice. So because I am fat, it's assumed I am lazy. It's assumed I eat badly (and, to be fair, I DID used to eat terribly. I DID binge and eat junk a lot, and that is how I got to be 278 pounds, but I really have been trying and eating much healthier.)

A 250-pound woman walks down the street. Teenage boys make oinking noises at her. They laugh and waddle around. They moo. People in the store look at her with disdain and wonder how she could let herself get like this. On the way out, a guy yells, "Hey fatty, LOSE SOME WEIGHT!"

What they don't know is that this women just spent a year changing her whole life around. She walks 4 miles a day. She sticks to her 1600 calories per day. And she has lost 120 pounds in the last 14 months. But do those people see a woman who was 370 pounds and has done a wonderful thing for herself? No. They see an indulgent, fat, lazy cow. Whether she is on her way up the scale or on her way down, they can't know, but they judge. They mock. They hate.

When I was 21 years old, I was pregnant with my second child. I was thin back then... healthy thin. I was so happy and excited to be starting a family, and the baby was very much wanted and loved. I was thrilled that I would have a little sibling for my toddler son. I already named the baby Justin, and couldn't wait to hold him.

When I was 4 months pregnant, at my routine doctor visit, it was discovered that my unborn baby had passed away. I was devastated. I went home and waited for a miscarriage that never happened, and a week later I had a procedure to remove the baby. It was traumatic and painful.

Two days later my stepchildren told me that our videos were overdue from the rental store. So I got in the car and numbly drove them over to be returned. The little video store was dark, and I assumed it was closed. I handed the movies to my stepson and told him to put them in the drop box. After my stepson got back in the car, I was about to drive off when the door of the video store flew open, and a raging, angry woman came running out, shaking her fist and screaming. I stopped the car as she stood banging on my door. I opened the window, and the woman put her livid red face right up to mine... screaming , raging. She called me every name in the book, right in front of my stepkids, with my little son in the back seat. Apparently she thought I was trying to return the videos on the sly, without having to pay the late fee. I had no opportunity to answer... I just kept stammering, "I'm sorry... I thought you were closed... I will pay the fee... I'm sorry..." but she kept screaming. Finally she screamed, "AND I DON'T EVER WANT TO SEE YOU IN MY STORE AGAIN!!!" and stomped off.

I went home dazed and hurt. I sat in my room and cried and cried... for my lost baby, for my children seeing this spectacle, for the hatred this woman had poured onto me. I wrote her a letter later, with a check for $10 to cover any late fees (which were probably about $2) and explained that I had just gone through a traumatic loss of a very wanted child. She never cashed the check, but I never went back to her store.

I share that story because I want to emphasize that you NEVER KNOW what someone else is going through, or has gone through. You don't know if the person in the grocery store seems grouchy because her husband passed away last week. You don't know if someone is thoughtless because they just had cancer treatments. You don't know if someone's actions are because they just lost a child. And you don't know if that fat person is losing weight, gaining weight, has a medical problem, or is eating for comfort because their mother is dying. Try to refrain from judgements. Try to give people the benefit of the doubt. There is nothing wrong with being kind.

Mr. Nugent, and all other fat haters out there, we know we are fat. And it's our business, really. You have problems too, but maybe yours are not as visible as ours are. But I would rather be fat than be a bigot. Learn some tolerance. Practice some kindness. And keep your judgements to yourself.

57 comments:

Bikini Envy said...

I went to a doctor's appointment once where the doctor told me I was "lazy, disgusting and should be ashamed of my self". I cried in the car and didn't go to another doctor for three years because of fear. It doesn't even have to be spoken. The looks people give you while pumping gas, the job you didn't get even though you were more experienced or the sales person who doesn't pay attention to you are just as painful as words.

It's amazing that overweight people are the last people on earth that it is still socially acceptable to criticize.

Overweight people do not want to be fat. If it were easy to loose weight, we'd all be skinny, but people without this problem don't understand that.

kilax said...

Thank you for writing this. I just want people to leave me alone sometimes - they don't know what I am feeling. I didn't explain that well. You did though. Thank you.

Shel said...

Pardon my French, but Ted Nugent is a dickhead. I've even stopped listening to his music, which I used to enjoy, because I just can't stand dealing with him even in that respect. And it's not just the whole "fat" thing; he's just a loudmouthed, obnoxious person with too much opportunity to spread his particular brand of hate.

I don't even know if I've ever commented here before, because things have been hectic for me, but I wanted to let you know that I love your blog. :)

Twix said...

You know what? Some folks just plainly have to much time on their hands. Sad, he has nothing better to do or that lady either.

You know what I say! So what I'm fat, he's skinny, she's tall, he's short...whoopee we come in different sizes. So to all the haters GET OVER IT!

sheesh...ok moving on because you know I have much better things to use my time on, like living...lol

Congrats again on your invite and good luck on your trip!

Christine said...

I can totally identify with this post.

Thanks for sharing!

Karyn said...

Well said, Lyn.

People who have never struggled to lose weight have no idea what is involved.

Eat less and move more.

If it was that simple, no one would be fat. There is so much baggage that goes along with how much we eat (or what we eat) and how we move or not.

I especially loved what you said about not judging someone's behavior - who knows what anyone is going through at the moment?

I try to assume that the crabby service provider is having a lousy day and in spite of their bad behavior, is really trying to get past it. If I can be kind and cheerful in spite of their rudeness, maybe they can turn themselves around.

I am apauled at the comments from the folks in the chat room. What arrogance and unspeakably insensitive rudeness!

Guess not enough people have seen Bambi and taken Thumper's rule to heart....."If you can't say anything nice, don't say nothing at all".

Anonymous said...

I can relate. I hate the looks, the people staring, the rolling eyes and hateful words people say to me just because I'm big. What gives someone the right to say such things to me just because I'm overweight?

I have been overweight my whole life, I have never known skinny. Was it because I was lazy? No it wasn't, I used to be on a soccer team, a cheerleading squad and a softball team when I was younger. I used to ride bikes and take walks and all sorts of stuff.

Was it the food I ate? I dunno. I realy didn't eat much junk food. I are breakfast (cereal most days) I brought a sandwich for lunch with fruit and maybe a snack cake or a cookie or I bought school lunch. I drank milk, wasn't aloud soda. We ate dinner as a family with lean meats, either rice or potatoes and a veggie.

Was it all that bad? Yeah we ate white bread, we had white potatoes, white pasta but I don't think I overate crazy or anything so why was I chunky? My brother was skinny..I really don't know.

Was I treated differently, yes I was..Very different actually. Even my older brother made fun of me, called me names and tortured me through out my childhood along with his friends. He told me if I wanted people to stop calling me names then I should just lose the weight like it was the most simple thing in the world to do. He actually thought he was 'helping' me.

He hurt me so badly, my own brother brought me to tears on a daily basis and where did I turn? Eventually I turned to food and gained more weight and went from chunky to really overweight. But it didn't matter, I got made fun of just as much but atleast I had the comfort of cookies or candy when I was hurt and upset. I got a few minutes of happiness in my day by eating what I enjoyed.

To people who think you are 'helping' by trying to tax the fat people or not letting overweight people eat certain places, you are NOT helping. You are hurting us more and we will go get food from somewhere and we will eat..Nothing will really change except it will be even more socially exceptable to make fun or and/or leave out overweight people.

PrincessDieter said...

I'm always amazed at how rude folks can be in public. I suppose because I was raised to be excessively polite and courteous (to everyone in public, from strangers on the bus to the bank clerk to waitresses to etc), that it is distressing when people seem to just go out of their way to be disruptive and mean and petty.

We live in a SOCIETY, which means that outside of our comfy little nests, we need to be aware that others have feelings and issues and we should walk a little more gently than maybe we would feel like that day.

That waitress may have a dying mama (as I went through) and is exhausted and at wit's end. That lady on the bus may have been working all night on her feet and could really use a seat. That kid in the grocery store could have failed a test in school.

I appreciate courtesy and consideration. I try to give it.

We have lost the art of public courtesy, we really have.

And while a good deal of what WangoTango Man says is true--we are gluttons, we did this to ourselves for the most part, we do eat too much in many cases--it's the HOW it is said that makes all the difference.

We can discuss the epidemic of obesity and its assorted issues without resorting to insults and namecalling. We really can.

And last time I checked, namecalling and insults never really help--not in politics, not in medicine, not in relationships, and certainly not in public discourse.

What if we taxed promiscuous folks (and Grill and Kill It Fella has done his share of indiscriminate boinking)? They spread disease. They cause irresponsible parentage. Maybe he should pay 10% more in taxes for his profligate previous sexual life.

We who are fat carry our deadly sin with us (gluttony = fat; sloth = flab). The greedy and the lustful and etc can hide theirs or look good in theirs (ie designer clothes). But we can't get away from what we did in the past without al ot of hard work.

Nugent needs to get a clue about these things.

One day, he might end up paying for his depravation...then who will show him some compassion?

The P

Marshmallow said...

People are awful. You know about how the doctor treated me, disbelieving of how much exercise I do saying that 'if I really did that much exercise, I would look very different'. The fact is while there was *some* weight loss when I shifted from an unhealthy lifestyle to the uber-healthy one I live now, there wasn't as much as one might assume. I used to be fat. I still am. But I used to be unhealthy. I'm not anymore. Yet I still get judged.

Especially by my family.

E said...

That is so true. Thank you for sharing your experience...sometimes its easy to be insensitive when a little kindness goes a long way. Your story reminded me of this quote: "Be kind. Every person you meet is fighting a hard battle." So true, right? Life is hard a lot of the time for a lot of people, and we have no idea what is going on in the inner lives of even our friends.

Weight is a factor that is always out there to be judged. Its really a shame that people are so quick to make assumptions about people they don't even know.

Everyone should be given the benefit of the doubt.

elife said...

Ted Nugent is a goose-stepping chucklehead.

And "Fat tax?" What about a cholesterol tax? And an Apple-shaped body tax? Smokers tax? High Blood Pressure Tax? Slippery slope there, Ted.

Chubby Chick said...

Amen.

(Lyn)

Fleur said...

Today, I was unfortunate enough to overhear one woman's diatribe against fat people and I was fuming over it. Then I came home and here was this fresh post, which is exactly what I needed to read today. I've written about my own experience, but it's wonderful to know that we are deserving, even though at every turn we're being told we're not.

Anonymous said...

Thank you for what you wrote. I gained about 70 pounds because I became bed-ridden for over 6 months with a disease of my own.
People do look at me like I haven't done enough with my life, yet have never asked what got me here. It wasn't because of my laziness, and it wasn't because I wasn't paying attention. It was because of circumstances that were out of my control.

Paula said...

Ted Nugent is another one of those who makes a career out of being "outrageous". He acted crazy to get out of the army, he had sex with underage women, wasn't he on drugs? Anthony Bourdain is an alcoholic and chain smoker, so who cares what either of them have to say about fat people really? Their opinions don't influence me in any way.

We're all trying to lose, what more can we do.

Paula said...

Oh, I forgot to say that yes certain doctors are idiots. I quit going to my internist after I went to him with bronchitis, told him about it and he said "don't you wheeze all the time anyway"? I went elsewhere and was treated for it. I have never wheezed in my life until that time.

We have to be our own advocates I guess.

Lin said...

Great post as usual, Lyn. I wish I could write the way you do!
I've never liked Ted Nugent, well, at least ever since I learned that he is a big bow-hunter who loves to kill innocent animals in a painful way. Nuff said.

ryry the adventurous said...

Seriously, the Nuge needs a little Nudge off a cliff if you ask me. I don't even like his music anymore. :(

Doctors who don't understand eating disorders and obesity should be required to return to school. Idiots.

But YOU are awesome. :) And me and my anger are right there with you! Hehe

Pamela said...

Thank you for posting this - I've often ranted about the way overweight people are treated and about the rudeness of others, but have never been able to put it as well as you have. Just reading about his article makes my blood boil - it's probably a good thing I haven't read the whole thing.

Deb said...

Amen, sister!

sassy said...

I just found your blog and relate to so much of what you are going through. Ted Nugent needs a stupid hypocrite tax. Yesterday I watched the clip when he and Anthony Bourdain (who I thought was smarter) talk about how gross and unacceptable the fatties were. They really think they can hate and shame someone to lose weight and that they are personally paying for it with their taxes. LOFingL!! They attach some kind of moral superiority to being smaller than some others while they shoot things, abuse their bodies with alcohol, cigarettes and spread hate and misinformation.
They really think they are more healthy than some fat person like me who loves exercise, eats vegetarian, never smoked, thinks positively and occassionaly gets taken over by an eating disorder?
Sorry for the rant. I like your blog and will keep reading:)

Jenn said...

I stumbled across your blog today for the first time, and this was the first post I read. It brought me to tears. Thank you for articulating so well what I'm sure most overweight people feel.

Bethany said...

Oh my goodness--this kind of stuff burns my hid BIG TIME! How can people say such cruel things about people they don't even know? If someone said that about handicapped folks, or someone of another race they would be labeled prejudiced bigots. Why is it acceptable to rag on fat people just because in our society thin=beautiful? I have to say, if someone said things like this to me, I don't think I'd be responsible for my behavior. Whatever happened to human decency? I guess it's just not cool anymore...Thanks for this. I have addressed this topic on my blog also, when the young, overweight British girl was runner up in the Miss England pageant and the press crucified her for her weight.

aworkingmomsjoy said...

Well said...

It just show how people can be very ignorant. If it was so easy to lose wt, we'd all be thin.

Mama said...

If Ted spent as much time concentrating on his dead career rather than picking on people he knows nothing about then he might feel a little better about himself.

I used to get depressed in the face of such judgments. Now I know that people who feel so superior to others are usually very insecure and unhappy with their own lives. Just remember that rudeness is a weak person's attempt at strength.

placemat said...

Hello! I've been reading your blog for a few months and like others I really appreciate your style. What I appreciate most is your attitude though. You are in a period of not-giving-up that I find admirable and encouraging in many more areas than weight/diet. :)

One thing I've noticed about your blog (and I read it from start to finish, creepily) is that you have yet to write a bitter rant. Even this rant that I'm commenting on, in which you deserve to write a bitter rant, you end positively and most of all sympathetically. That's super cool to see and it makes me suspect that you will succeed at things.

In my experience, any negativity I ever feel about fat people is completely based on my own insecurity. My issues with food don't match my other addictive issues, but since I don't wear those addictions on my body it is easy to see someone who does and be reminded of myself. Luckily this doesn't make me dislike or disapprove of anyone, but I can imagine that others are less insightful. It sucks to be the butt of any prejudice. It's nice to see you using gross prejudice as a reason to encourage others to be kind.

I've been reading for long enough that it has long felt like time to say hello and compliment you, and your kind treatment of this REALLY INFURIATING topic pushed me over the edge. Be well! <3

Blossom said...

Puh-leeze. Just because he has some modicum of fame, he thinks he can comment on the state of the world. Why do we care? You are doing what you can to better yourself, and that's all that can be asked. I'm sorry about your baby.

Ceres said...

Ted a**hole Nugent can think and say whatever the hell he wants, and I won't care. This extends to all fat haters who don't think before opening their stupid mouths. By the way, how about an idiocy tax? Idiots definitely impose a burden on society, and they could clearly save us from it by keeping their mouth shut, so let's tax them for choosing to open it!

The real problem is that many people whose company and opinion I do value sometimes look down on fat people, mostly without even realizing. It's like being fat conveys something unattractive about your whole personality. People might be your friends, but they will never date you. (A friend actually told me "Wow, you've lost so much weight, I think I might have to put you on my flirting list now!", and he thought he was actually paying me a compliment!) It's as if being fat means that you yourself feel that you're not worth any better, so why would anybody else pay any attention to you? Being fat is seen as a failure, and our society doesn't like failures. It sucks for us overweight people, but that's what it is. I don't have a solution to this.

Some of the kindest, wittiest, most fun and interesting people that I've met and been friends with were overweight or really big. I am fat, but I have good friends and no social issues of this sort. But I do think that fat people somehow have to try harder to win people's good opinion and friendship.

When I was a kid, I remember complaining to my mother about some other kids calling me names (I was a fat kid). She told me that if I wanted to fight back, I should yell at them that I could always lose the weight if I wanted to, but they would always be the rude and impolite bastards that they were. (Maybe my mom used slightly different wording, but that was the main point :-)).

We can always lose the weight, but poor Ted Nugent will always remain an idiot.

Memoria said...

Wow. That was an awesome post; I agree completely with EVER SINGLE THING you wrote. I think we should also include people who hate others with darker skin. Unlike being overweight (for most people), we cannot control our skin color at all because we are born with it. I still don't understand why people get treated differently because of something they can't control. Homosexuality is another case in point.

THANK YOU.

Teeli said...

WE are fat. HEis ugly spirited.WE can get thin.Nothing he can ever do will change his inner ugliness....

Chelsea said...

I just have to tell you have you are one of the biggest inspirations I have ever seen!!

Thank you so much for sharing your story.

Roxanne said...

One of my favorite lines from a Jewel song..."In the end, only kindness matters"

So very, very true.

Diana said...

I'm sitting here in tears. I don't know what to say. Except that you are a very lovely, wonderful person for sharing so much of yourself with the world.

I'm so very sorry these things have happened to you. You deserve better, and hope you get what you deserve. Happiness, and kindness from others. My heart goes out to you.

Alissa said...

Lyn, you are so not alone. Within the last few weeks, I've seen both a psychologist and a physician, in part to get help with my bingeing. Both acted as though they had never heard of this eating disorder before, and told me, "Well you just need to eat less, and exercise more. Start running again." If only more healthcare professionals, and people in general, were empathetic and openminded.

MizFit said...

obviously youve touched a nerve as evidence by the volume of your comments huh?

and IM IN to echo the NEVER KNOWING WHAT SOMEONE IS GOING THROUGH

any someone huh?

it is so simple but IMO so true that we (the royal) cant judge ANYONE until we've walked a mile in her shoes...we have no clue.

new*me said...

i have never encountered people like this in my own life or perhaps I just wasn't aware of them.

I think it is so wrong to judge others no matter what the circumstances.

I tell my kids it's the inside of someone that matters, not the outside.

Good reminder Lyn!

Anonymous said...

The problem of course is that all too often, overweight people themselves buy into the criticisms of the Fat Haters... people assume they can say whatever hateful and hurtful thing they want to the fat person bc they assume the heavy person will quietly accept their comments bc they ARE so ashamed of being fat (most of the time).

I used to be much fatter than I am now, but I am still overweight. I would love to reach my goal weight, but given how much I've tried and the fact that I managed to keep 80lbs off for the last 4 years but not actually lose anymore than that, I'm starting to think this might just be my "size" and I need to deal with it. In these last four years, I've developed a very strong intolerance for this kind of fat bigotry. It's just unacceptable. Period. I'm not at the size at which I get stares on the street or "helpful" suggestions that I lose weight, but I have NO TOLERANCE for fat hatred -- implied or explicit. This might seem harsh, but replace the word "fat hatred" in my last sentence with "racism" (i.e. "I have NO TOLERANCE for racism") and it suddenly seems less harsh...

Obesity is a disease; it's a physical disease AND a psychological one (most of the time). It's not just a matter of "eat less, exercise more"; it's a matter of re-doing your entire lifestyle. And it's hard. Anyone who doesn't think it's hard is an ignorant idiot.

As for Ted Nugent... he's a washed up no-body who can kiss my (fat) a$$; no one should care what he thinks.

Anonymous said...

I also wanted to comment about kindness. I agree with you there -- kindness is an amazing, important virtue. A virture that is all too often forgotten in this shock-jock, reality-TV, get-voted-off-the-island, how-fat-is-she, she-stole-my-man world. Kindness isn't entertaining; kindness doesn't make the TV, or the news (usually); kindness doesn't make it way into many songs (There's a Counting Crows song, "Anna" that mentions it, but that's all I can think of...). Kindness, like intelligence, is undervalued and ignored.

Meanness, viciousness, aggression are what are glorified on TV and in movies... it's sad, but THAT is what children are seeing, THAT is what they[re being taught to value and it's a shame.

Petunia said...

Ted Nugent is completely insane and hateful.

This post made me sad, because people are jerks. Gotta stand tall.

Dinah Soar said...

What horrible people!!

I don't get that anorexic people who "can't" eat get sympathy...but those of us who can't "not eat" are lazy, disgusting, fat pigs.

Both over eating and under eating are disordered eating. And often there are psychological reasons why a person does one or the other. Surely people don't think it's normal psyche when people binge to the point of falling asleep with unchewed food in their mouth? Granted not everyone with disordered eating is that extreme. But, like alcoholism, there are degrees and levels of this problem. Some people are functioning alcoholics...others lay in the street in a stupor.

Yes-- we should give people the benefit of the doubt. But that is disappearing and we are becoming a nation of "haters" who think it is our right to use the foulest language and say whatever pleases us with no retribution.

It is called Christian charity to give people the benefit of the doubt. In the Bible charity is the word for love. And in I Corinthians chapter 13 the Bible says "it (charity, i.e. love) thinketh no evil"--in other words it gives the benefit of the doubt. The Bible also says charity, i.e. love, is kind. There is a list of behaviors that are manifested when charity, i.e. love, is in operation.

I see a correlation in our society, our culture, as it distances itself from Biblical principals to an increase in evil behavior as accountability to a higher power, God, decreases. And shamefully, all too often those who claim to be followers of Jesus Christ are the worst!! They are not following Jesus when their behavior contradicts the written word.

This is not to say we should never "judge". We are to limit our judging. The more we judge , the more we ourselves will be judged. "Judge not lest ye be judged". Judging brings judgement on ourselves.

And we are also instructed to "judge righteous judgement". There will be times when we will be called upon to make decisions and we will have to judge a situation or person's behavior--like when you're called to jury duty and must hear and judge what you hear; or when you have to cast your vote for President.

In these times, when it is our business or our concern, then we may judge, but it must be done righteously. And, again, we must be careful--if we judge others, we can be sure we will ourselves be judged by God, and by others, with the same measure we mete.

Sheri said...

Absolutely well said Lyn. One of my pet peeves is people who jump to conclusions about another's tone, actions, body etc. If I were an alcholic instead of obese there would far less attention. I don't know what burden I am to society. It has been proven that overweight people are no more a burden to healthcare than thin. In fact as we age it has been found that the thinner people see the doctor more. I get ticked off about people's attitudes, like on a Tyra show about accepting our size. A woman told the gal on the stage she was lying. There was no way she could be content or accepting of her fat body. Now since when have judgers been mind readers? Absolutely not. 95% of the time they are wrong. Besides, how does judgement and ridicule help? Most often for me weight has been gained when I don't feel loved or appreciated. Maybe if they tried that, getting to know a person instead of assuming they know everything, their input would have some value.

Tina said...

How about a washed up rock star tax?

As I've been hobbling around on 2 sprained ankles, people get annoyed when I take a while to cross in front of them and it's humiliating. They have no idea I'm injured they just think I can't walk because I'm fat.

Little do they know I walk 60 miles in the Breast Cancer 3-Day every year.

Kathy said...

Sounds like Ted needs to learn one of my favorite Bible verses (from The Message Translation) - "Stay calm; mind your own business; do your own job." -1 Thes. 4:11

Amber said...

Very touching story Lyn.

I think one thing we can learn from Ted Nugent (and Anthony Bourdain) is that money and fame (albeit minimal fame) certainly don't buy happiness. Because people who live a happy and meaningful life aren't mean to other people, don't promote hatred of any kind, and don't waste time spewing their hateful opinions at people who never asked for to hear them first place.

It's always upset me that it's socially acceptable to pick on fat people, especially fat women. Everyone makes bad decisions, it's just that the bad decisions we might make are evident on our bodies.

And I agree with a lot of you about doctors. Anytime I see my doctor, it doesn't matter what it's about, his answer is always the same...

Headache? ...Because you're fat.
Stomach pain? ...Because you're fat.
Broken arm? ...Fat.
Toenail fungus?...Fat.

How is my fat affecting my freakin' toenails?? It makes me not want to see my doctor when something is wrong because I know I'll get the same answer. Apparently fat is the leading cause of EVERY single health problem.

Anonymous said...

I am in tears after reading your post. I hope you know how much you help people by speaking the truth an sharing, even when it's painful.

Thank you Lyn.
JT

Heather said...

to me, if you are going to do what he suggests, then you should do that for anyone who has an addiction: drugs, alcohol, sex, gambling, etc. Food is an addiction too, and to treat someone like that because of how they look but not turn around and treat an alcoholic differently is just wrong and is discrimination in my eyes.

Debbie Haughland Chan said...

Very good post! I quoted one of your paragraphs in my blog.

Jayme said...

Thank you for writing about this,, it is very true and ppl can be so cruel...


I love reading your blog, you are so real and you have great insight to what we are all going thru...

Thanks for the inspiration:)

Erin said...

I just wanted to say thank you for this post. I am quite large, myself, but because it has become so "mainstream" to ridicule fat people, I sometimes find myself watching people larger than me eat at a fast food joint, and (in my head... I'm not rude enough to say it out loud) wonder if they shouldn't have gotten a salad instead of a burger. This line of thought is totally unacceptable, but it has crept up on me because of how much "moral superiority" thin (or in my case, not quite as fat) people feel over obese people. I'm glad you posted this because I had not really thought that what I was doing was that bad... but it really is. Maybe the fat person at the McDonald's is getting a rare treat, and has actually lost a lot of weight. In fact, if I'm in a fast food restraunt too, really--who am I to judge?

supermommy said...

Very well said.

I haven't encountered treatment like that but my Mom has in the past. My brothers, sister and I were always ready to fight with anyone who dared to say something about her.

Lela said...

"Somebody's got to say you can't eat that; you're way too fat." This is the statement I have a comment about. He was discussing the need for proper parenting, and I can't say that I disagree with him. I lost 100 lbs in 2002 (-2003) and I'm coming to learn, now that I have a child and am struggling with my weight again, that somebody DID, in fact, need to tell me that I shouldn't "eat that" when I was a child. I was allowed ice cream on a daily basis, and I was alone most of the time to decide what I should eat. I didn't choose well...but there was no one to tell me any differently. So I was obese. My highest weight was 286, and now, because I am still having to learn how to tell myself no, I see the scale creeping back up (209 this morning). If kids learn how and when to eat when they're young, they DO have a much better chance at being fit at an older age. Parenting is important to this issue...unfortunately, I do have to agree with Ted on that.

Lyn said...

Lela,

Yes, he did mention parenting, however his comment about telling people they are "way too fat" included "any authority":

"That needs to happen at home and at school, wherever young people are under the guidance of any authority, school and home, and at the workplace. Somebody’s got to go, “You can’t eat that, you’re way too fat.”

While proper parenting is important, I certainly disagree that any Mother or Father should be so crass as to tell their child they are "way too fat" to eat something. It backfires, it hurts the child, it makes them hide food and eat alone in shame for comfort. Instead, children need a good example from their parents. A child raised in a house without loads of chips and treats, who eats healthy meals and snacks, will not need to be insulted and degraded to shame them into weight loss. And I also take issue with Ted's suggestion that kids should be told they are "way too fat" by their teachers at school or by their bosses at work. Would you want your boss coming over and taking the donut out of your mouth on your break because you are "way too fat"?

For the full, disgusting, vile (much worse than what I quoted in my blog) transcript of what Ted said, go here:

http://calorielab.com/news/2008/08/05/ted-nugent-anthony-bourdain-obesity-transcript/

Kenz said...

Hi there! I just found your blog through a friend and wanted to say hello and congratulations on your achievements so far.

You are so right about people being cruel and thinking they have a right to tell fat people what they think.

I remember when I was 16 I went on a ski trip with my school's music program. I was 5 foot 10 tall, and about a size 14 ladies (Australian.) So I was chubby for a 16 year old, but tall, and by no means fat.

The man working in the ski shop handed me a ski suit to try on, which wouldn't zip up. I asked for a bigger size and he gave me a filthy look, and handed me a different suit, which was also too small. I asked him again if I could please have a larger size and he stared at me and said loudly and slowly for me and everyone else to hear "You should be ashamed."

Through the entire process of me losing weight I completely forgot about that man. I'd love to go back now and give him a piece of my mind!! Asshole.

Hanlie said...

Well done for addressing this issue! I have also been at the receiving end of this kind of hatred and it sucks. At least we can lose weight, but stupid people will always be stupid!

Frantic Home Cook said...

Sad. Very sad. When many of the skinny moms I know who smoke say they more afraid of gaining weight than quitting a cancerous habit, I know we've gone crazy.

I have two beautiful grade school daughters. Both eat the same meals and snacks. Both ride bikes and play basketball every day. One is short and has always been heavier than average like my family. The other is tall and thin as a rail like my husband's family.

I hope someday society will realize that we're not all born with the same body.

MaryB said...

I am so sorry for your loss

Anonymous said...

ever since i was a young child, i have always been thin. i have never had to endure the name-calling, criticism, or ugly stares and judgements that very overweight people have had to do.

someone posted a comment and said something along the lines of, "everyone has problems, they just may not be as visible as ours are" (implying being overweight.). well, i too also have a serious problem with my weight, and it is not quite as visible as an overweight's person battle with weight, but it is still noticeable. i developed anorexia at age 16. i hated my body, i wanted desperately to change it, i wanted to crawl out of my skin and just be someone else. i came to disrespect my body and deprive it of essential nutrients, vitamins, and minerals. i sought treatment, and have slowly regained a sense of control over myself. i am currently 19 years old and am doing better. however, i am still very thin and find myself depriving my body of certain foods when times become very stressful.

i think everyone has one or two issues with their bodies. they may not be huge issues such as eating disorders or obesity, but we all struggle. this article has helped me open my eyes and realize that i need to love and appreciate my body. if everyone would love and accept themselves, then it would be much easier for everyone to love and accept those around them.

i wish everyone the best of luck in whatever challenges life has thrown at them. remember, life doesn't give you challenges that you cannot handle!