Lucy, who wrote this, is the niece of one of my Facebook friends. I work with people struggling to manage their weight and she says beautifully what it feels like to hear cruel, bullying jokes on the radio and television. It really doesn’t motivate people to get thinner.
I agree 100% with what she has to say. Please read.
So time for a emotional status update.
Just watched another show where overweight/obese people were the butt of their jokes. Yes obesity is an issue in the modern era but that doesn’t give people the right to demonise a whole section of society. Even I have noticed that I hear a lot more jokes about people’s weight as I have lost it myself which makes me wonder what was said about me. Not a day goes by when I don’t read something which is blaming obese people for all the for the world’s financial woes (OK, I may be exaggerating here but not by much). Most of you will have known me when I was at my biggest. I struggled with my weight for 16 years, and I still do.
Every single day is a battle for me, not to buy and eat that whole share bar of chocolate, scoff that entire tub of ice cream, visit McDonalds just because there is one there and have it as well as my normal meals. My eating was out of control and I don’t think anyone can comprehend how much I used to eat, even I think back and can’t believe it. I also still lose the battle, more often than I’d like. If you have a problem with your weight and food it is awful. Food is what gives you comfort but it is also what is causing the problem in the first place. It is the ultimate love – hate relationship. There were times when all I could think about was being alone so I could eat and not feel judged all the while hating myself for doing it. The next time you go to make a fat joke at someone’s expense think about the battle they may be going through. Weight loss is about eating less and moving more but you cannot begin to imagine the emotional aspects of it. I don’t know enough about it to make a comparison, but think about whether or not you would make fun of someone with anorexia. Or tell someone with anorexia that all they need to do is eat more. I’m sorry that if you think that is controversial but that is how I feel about it, I think both ends of the spectrum have an awful battle.
However I consider myself lucky that I developed gallstones and really high blood pressure, it gave me the kick up the backside I needed. So after 2 years I finally managed to achieve a reasonably healthy weight and I hope blood pressure too. I’ve also rediscovered my love of running which gives me the incentive to eat healthily but also helps keep the weight down. Other people aren’t that lucky, they can’t find the motivation, they can’t get out of the rut.
I know I post a lot of before and after pictures on Facebook but there is a simple reason for this. I will admit it is for me. It is to help me see that I have been successful because even after going from a size 26/28 to a 12/14 I still feel like a big person, I can’t see the change in myself. So thank you for putting up with my posts and the encouragement you give me. This year as I am coming to the end of my weight loss has probably been the hardest year of all for a number of reasons. I have had many low points this year. Being so overweight for over a decade takes its toll on your body, I have the body of an 80 year old at the age of 30. After not particularly liking myself and wanting to hide away from the world I have started to try and build a life for myself. It is hard to expect other people to accept and like you when you can’t even accept or like yourself.
Nevertheless I am getting there, with some help. I have a wonderful group of people I have met through running Vikki, Barrie, Klara, Marion, Caroline and the list goes on. Also the encouragement from those in Mallaig who have seen me running and losing the weight, some of them I don’t even know but will still congratulate me.
So there we have it. I’m not normally one to speak from the heart but I hope you now have some insight into how it feels to have a weight problem, I know I’m not alone.