All right, folks, I’ve got two long, thinky, almost-finished posts in the drafts folder, so I swear you’ll get some real, old-style content at some point this week. But right now, I just had to stop working on them and post about one of Samhita’s latest posts at Feministing. I hope she doesn’t mind that I’m about to quote huge portions of it. The deal is, she’s just moved back in with her parents, and, well…
Before moving in, I set some ground rules for my parents. They were not allowed to talk to me about my lack of allegiance to our religion, my dating and/or marriage status and my weight. I got to give it up to them, they have definitely not bothered me about religion or dating (too much), but they have failed miserably at making comments about my weight.
Since I was young, it was considered totally acceptable for my family to pick at, poke fun of or make me feel bad for being chubby. Even when I thought of myself at a “skinny” place, I was told that I had gotten fat. In my teen years this led to struggling with multiple forms of eating disorders, including dieting, fasting, starving myself and even a small bout of bulimia. Looking back, I don’t totally know how I worked through it but having a strong community of women’s studies professors, feminist friends and queer men certainly helped me right along.
Samhita says that generally, she’s got a positive body image (yay!), but it’s a daily struggle (nodnod), and being criticized for her weight is making her think more about the hysteria over fatness.
What bothers me is that if you are overweight (whatever THAT means) you are somehow a bad person and everyone has the right to judge you or make comments about the way you look. I would be lying if I said I always feel great and confident about myself and the way I look. I struggle on a daily basis with food choices, emotional eating and feeling “fat.” But when can we move passed this belief that being larger than the hideous exaggerated fat-hating images of women we see in the media makes you unhealthy, lazy and self-loathing? It is totally acceptable to be hateful towards fat people and mask it with, “but I am worried about you.” Seriously, fuck you.
Yup. And finally:
It is the worst feeling in the world to hate yourself because of your body weight and one of the deepest wounds in my psyche. My mom is starting to understand the impact it has on my emotional/mental health and I have worked hard not to take it personally and recognize that she doesn’t mean it to hurt me. But that doesn’t always change the way I internalize it.
What are your survival techniques?
That last line is what made me drop everything to post. The comments over there are terrific — though frequently heartbreaking — so far (which they’re not always when Feministing talks about fat, quite frankly), but I wanted to see what Shapelings have to say. What are your survival techniques? What would you tell Samhita?