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Fat shaming

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Old 07-18-2014, 05:49 PM   #1
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I am 60 years old, and have been cycling the same 20 pounds on and off for the last 20 years. I recently realized that I usually slip up when an incident or a person does or says something to put me into a shame spiral about my weight.

I really want to continue my current weight loss-a very slow 14 pounds off. At my age, I know it will take longer, and thank goodness I was able this time to put my finger on what was destroying my motivation, making me feel unhappy, and turning to food to ease my anxiety.

I have been literally frozen emotionally for a couple of days over an interview with my new supervisor in which I got the distinct impression that he was making serious judgements about me because of my weight, and it was a very uncomfortable, humiliating ending to an interview that I had gone into full of hope and anticipation. It is frightening because he could have an impact on my working conditions and employment.

Don't you just wonder about haters?

Well, I am going to go shopping, get out of the house, and finish packing for the vacation of a lifetime...Paris, Venice, Greece. Unfortunately, I let this incident take me to such a sad place right before such an exciting event in my life that I have looked forward to for years...but coming here is the first step to getting over that!
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Old 07-18-2014, 05:59 PM   #2
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Crashing here because I wanted to say how much I hate the fat shaming. I had an appointment with my gym's trainer at my 1-year anniversary, and discovered I had actually gained a few pounds over the last year. And I was okay with it, because I knew I had not consistently tried, but I had never given up, and had successfully maintained a 40-pound loss from the year before. He said lots of quoteworthy things, but perhaps the most blatant: "You had been coming in for months, and I was thinking, 'Wow, Laurie is looking good,' but now. . . ." WTH? So I made a bet with him. If I couldn't lose 12 pounds in 2 months on my own, I would sign up with him. And so was born my trainer boy challenge, seen in my signature below. And I will tell you - when I have been tempted to make bad choices with food or exercise, I see his face, and it has been much easier to stay on plan. Cuz there ain't NO WAY I'm paying anyone money to make me feel bad.

Most of all, though - WOO HOO on your vacation of a lifetime. Have an amazing time!
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Old 07-18-2014, 08:53 PM   #3
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One of the most valuable lessons I have learnt from the older generation on this board is to not give a sh!t what other people think about my weight (loss). When I was younger similar issues would trip up my weightloss too. But at 39 - no more. So - at 60 - stop listening/caring to/about other people's opinions and just get on with it!
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Old 07-18-2014, 08:58 PM   #4
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Hi Quixotica,

I hope you don't mind my asking, but are you sure that the issue was your weight? Or is it possible that you were thinking the problem was your weight when in fact the person interviewing you was being difficult for some other reason?

I'm going to give you a little example from my own life: I'm a writer and so we often have to do public appearances, and appearance is important. Gorgeous writers are more likely to get invited to do TV, whereas the slightly overweight schlump is unlikely to get tapped. One of my best friends falls into the flat out gorgeous category. I've always suspected that things went especially well in her career because of her looks-- and let's face it, looks can help. But, I have another close friend who is 150 lbs overweight. I thought her looks might stand in her way-- but they don't at all. Why? Because she's really self-confident. She doesn't hang back thinking "oh no, maybe I'm too fat for this..." and so she gets all the same things that my gorgeous friend gets-- lots of media attention, etc.

So, what did I learn from this? I learned that a lot of my perception of what I was or wasn't getting because of my weight was most likely actually a by-product of my own confidence. So skinny people look better on TV? Sure, but that never stopped Oprah, for example.

That being said, please forgive me if I'm totally wrong-- you didn't say what made you think that weight was an issue-- and maybe you were dealing with a fat-shaming jerk, which is a completely different story!

In any case, hang in there! I'm 53, so I get trying to lose weight while older. I find that the progress is slower but my self-control is better so it's sort of a trade off.
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Old 07-19-2014, 12:12 AM   #5
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Yep, you had to be there, and rather than dwell on it, I am going to go back to my happy path, going to keep losing weight, and let his limitations limit him, not me. I am just happy that I sat myself down and figured out what was going on, figured out why I felt so ashamed, and got myself back on track.
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Old 07-19-2014, 01:16 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Quixotica View Post
Yep, you had to be there, and rather than dwell on it, I am going to go back to my happy path, going to keep losing weight, and let his limitations limit him, not me. I am just happy that I sat myself down and figured out what was going on, figured out why I felt so ashamed, and got myself back on track.
Sounds like the best strategy! People can be AWFUL sometimes. I say, at that point, we stick our fingers in our ears and sing LA-LA-LA.

Sorry, you had to have that experience.
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Old 07-19-2014, 09:17 AM   #7
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Seeing myself in recent photos is my own "fat shaming"! And photos don't lie unfortunately. One of my sisters is now overweight also, and she does not hesitate to project her own self-shaming onto me. She has gained weight in different areas of her body than me, but she tries to make it like I am like her! I know where I have gained weight. I don't need her telling me. Guess that means I need to stop commenting to my husband about his big tummy weight gain too!
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Old 07-19-2014, 03:49 PM   #8
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It's true, commenting doesn't help. What does is a good example and including yourself in any healthy food plans. For instance my DH gained about 18 lbs over the winter (he is 56 & has a VERY active job but only works 8 1/2 months of the year) and it was getting to the point where he knew he was gaining and I wasn't exactly overjoyed with the big spare tire either but I didn't know quite what to say. I, at that point was starting my own weight loss plan (to get rid of the 31 lbs up over 4 years from when I got very ill) so I started to cook seriously for me and since he didn't really have much to lose, I tweaked his meals a bit too. He decided to get serious when he could no longer put on his favorite jeans & cords and had to buy a couple new pairs. Then he weighed himself for the first time in years & was shocked. We worked on it together over the winter and by the beginning of March for me and May for him we were back at our goal weights and are still maintaining. I wasn't so strict with his food since he has a very busy spring schedule and used to work off the usual winter weight gain of 10ish lbs very easily. It helped to track our meals on MyFitnessPal.com as he often didn't realize how many calories were in what he ate and the portion sizes he chose. That really opened his eyes and he is much more thoughtful about food now. It helps both of us keep on track.
I hope you do well in your health journey and just enjoy your trip while trying to eat healthily. Try to make it about the art, architecture, scenery, and people instead of food. It can be done - we have no kids or pets and travel A LOT all over the world.

Liana
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