On Being Fat in America

I’m fat.

I used to be less fat, a year ago; then I had two major ankle surgeries in four months, spend a grand total of sixteen weeks in a cast or boot, and took to my bed in a fatalistic cookie dough eating binge.

And lately I’ve been thinking more and more about what it is like, on the ground, to be fat in America.

Before I get into this,  although this blog gets very little traffic I have noticed from assorted other feminist blogs that any post that dares to counter the dominant narrative of OMG FAT IS EVIL YOU MUST LOSE WEIGHT NOW gets a lot of very ugly comments. Be warned: I will not stand for that kind of shit.

So. This is what being fat is like. Feel free to add your own in comments.

Being fat is knowing that no matter how active your are, everyone you meet will assume that you are lazy.

Being fat is arming yourself before going to the doctor, because you are sure to get a lecture.

Being fat is knowing that even if you go to the doctor for a sore throat, you will be told your problem is being fat.

Being fat is being afraid to go back to tumbling class even after your ankle finally gets better because of your size.

Being fat is knowing that the First Lady of the United States, a woman you admire and respect, thinks your size is a problem.

Being fat is being told by someone you like that telling youth “being fat is OK,” is not an appropriate message.

Being fat is being called blubber, whale, fat-nessa, etc, all through middle school.

Being fat is being teased and knowing that the teachers will not stop the bullying because part of them agrees.

Being fat is never being able to shop in mainstream stores.

Being fat is being looked at funny by folks who work in those stores.

Being fat is the automatic assumption that you only drink diet soda.

Being fat is everyone assuming, all the time, that you are on a constant quest to lose weight and feeling free to offer suggestions.

Being fat is having someone that you actually like throw that bullshit line about how your fatness will be a problem for the taxpayers down the road.

Being fat is feeling judged constantly.

Being fat is having to spend more money on clothes.

Being fat is never being able to find clothes that fit well without shopping online for things that tend to fit badly anyway.

Being fat is feeling that people are constantly judging your food choices.

Being fat is never being able to comment on food that you like for fear that folks will just assume that you do nothing all day but eat that food.

Being fat in America? It kind of sucks.

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One response

  1. Rachel

    I love you. Your writing and your honesty have always moved me.

    November 30, 2011 at 7:07 am

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