The most terrifying thing is to accept oneself completely.
Ever since I returned to social media after a long 5 year hiatus, I’ve noticed that the inner critic in my head has a slew of friends online. It’s as if everyone uploaded their pain to send them to others in a game of mental tag. ” You’re fat”, ” You’re ugly”; everything I hate about myself, “You are it”.
What’s worse than the shaming and trolling is that the people who try to instill a positive body image that has nothing to do with one’s fatness, and everything to do with uplifting people who hate themselves, these people are scorned for ‘encouraging obesity’ and ‘ glorifying fatness’. These unsolicited critics proceed to do a public service by letting people know that their fatness is killing them. Does cruelty kill? I hope so.
Who asked for your opinion? You think so lowly of someone based on their body that you think they can’t live and think for themselves? You feel you ‘must’ teach them how to live? You feel you must assuage their mortification by telling them to lose the weight to be adored and eventually feel better. You feel that’s what worked for you ; the only way you could bear looking yourself in the mirror was to fight what was looking back at you. You hated yourself and thought if you could gain people’s accolades based on your exterior, perhaps this would gloss over the gaping void that you fill with negative mantras over and over and over again… So, when you see someone who isn’t striving for the societal ideal, like you are, and somehow is happy – something you could never be- you can’t allow this. You are so consumed with envy that the inner reservoir of self-hate spills over and absorbs the happiness of anyone around you. You’d rather go on a tirade against all fat people till kingdom come and go through cycles of diets and shakes and this workout and that, than to look inside that inner void and face the aggressive emotional tumour that is depleting you of everything humane. You don’t want to face your fears, you don’t want to admit what you’ve come to think of yourself; that you are useless, ugly, unlovable ; you don’t want to admit all of this because you actually believe it. You believe the lies that you’ve been force-fed and now you hate anyone who reminds you of what you worked so hard to bury.
You were burnt once, and instead of dealing with that burn, you choose to brand everyone so that your wound doesn’t stick out. And heaven forbid that you come across a non-burnt person who has the audacity to be comfortable with the non-woundness!
Bullying and hating yourself into dieting and working out only lasts so long. You can stretch an elastic band with all your might, but it’ll snap back – with force!; or it’ll break.
Here are some fitness inspiration mantras, or ‘fitspo’ for short, found across social media. Read, then decide if it’s a physical problem (i.e. being overweight) or an emotional problem (i.e. low self-esteem and negative body image)
50 reasons i want to lose 3 stone
2. Wearing tank tops and not covering my arms
4. sitting without think about how my thighs are spreading
11. wowing people at home and at school
13. not being the fat friend
14. not being so clumsy
26. going to festivals
28. not worrying about people taking photos
36. Fitting in
38. people won’t feel sorry for me
41. making my family proud
42. being able to talk to new people without thinking about how fat i am
43. smiling and not looking stupid
49. making my friends proud
Seeing all this fat acceptance disgusts me for one simple reason. I used to be an obese kid and god how I hated myself. Other kids where making fun of me, I was horrible at sports, had low energy and was all around just unhappy. But when my first growth spurts hit I suddenly grew out of obesity. I got lucky, standing now at 5ft11 and 156lbs, but that sure as hell won’t mean I will live on like I did before. I do workout and eat healthy for 3 years now and I haven’t felt better my entire life.
1. Fat Acceptance is a movement that advocates remaining fat. Accept that you are fat. I am against that. I think people should be within their acceptable weight range.
2. I don’t really understand the concept of loving yourself. Different groups use it to mean different things.
In a situation where a fat person feels bad about the way they look and feel, the FA movement will say:
“No! Stop feeling bad! You are beautiful. You shouldn’t hate yourself. Love yourself. You don’t need to conform to societal beauty standards. It’s not your fault that you get winded climbing a flight of stairs! This building is SO fatphobic it didn’t even occur to them to install lifts (or elevators for my American friends). It is the airlines fault you can’t fit in a single seat. They should make bigger seats for bigger people! People come in all shapes and sizes. You are fat because that is your set point. Not because you overeat and underexercise. This is not your doing. It is your genetics. Fuck anyone who tells you that you are not the sparkling angel that you are.” etc etc etc.
Whinge whinge whinge. Personal responsibility is a foreign concept to Fat Activists.
The rest of us will say:
“Dammit stop feeling sorry for yourself. Respect yourself enough to give yourself the life you deserve. Getting winded after climbing a single flight of stairs? That is terrible. Come on. Chin up. All is not lost. You can turn it all around. Enough self loathing and soothing yourself with food. Love yourself to know that you should be leading a more fulfilling life. Your life is hampered by your weight and you are not happy anymore. Your quality of life is decreasing. It is time to make a change. You don’t know what you are capable of. Shall we find out?”
Imagine if you body could speak to you as a separate entity. It would say (if you were fat) ‘You were supposed to love me! How could you destroy me like this!’. Because I think you shouldn’t hurt or damage the things you love. And being fat is very damaging.
The fat acceptance movement is all about giving everyone a gold medal. Everyone is a special little snowflake.
BUT ADMITTING FAULTS IS NOT A COUNTER TO SELF ACCEPTANCE. In fact, self acceptance should be KNOWING you are not Jesus. You are human and you make mistakes. You’ve let yourself go. And now you feel like shit. But you have the ability to turn it around. Yes it is not going to be easy. Who the hell promised you an easy life? You have to work for it.
To be honest, the FA movement is one giant circle jerk. It is all about feeling good now while ignoring reality. I know HAES activists who are now bigger than when they started. Like shockingly bigger. They’ve started to use scooters to shop in supermarkets. One of them is on oxygen. When they post their ‘activism’ videos, my lungs ache hearing them speak! They are winded just by talking and each breath is so laboured and deep. And they have the NERVE to write long ranty posts on how it is unfair for child protective services to remove a 200lb 8 year old from his parents. Because apparently we don’t really know what causes childhood obesity. They think obesity is a body shape.
Where does loving yourself come into the equation if you are eating yourself to immobility and eventually death? Yea ok you love yourself but now you are 450 lbs and you can barely walk. Now what?
No one thinks they are going be become one of the superfats until they do. The superfats didn’t start out being 400 or 500 lbs. They were all overweight first, then obese, then morbidly obese and then they reach the stage where they can’t function.
So FA needs to die.
wow. Wonderful messages, eh?