Living Maintenance - Judging Others: do you do it?




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neurodoc
04-14-2013, 10:36 PM
I can't tell you how many times I've heard versions of the following statement: "you shouldn't feel self-conscious at the gym if you're overweight, because everyone else is too busy focusing on their workout to notice or care." Ditto for eating from the breadbasket at dinner if you're overweight, or wearing a tight, brightly colored skirt, or anything else that draws negative attention to you as a larger-than-average human.

I'm here to say, you're not just paranoid. It's not just in your head. People really are that shallow, myself included, and make comparisons and pass judgement all the time. I'm not proud of it, it's not something I do on purpose, and whenever I have one of my "oh god she's fat" thoughts, I quickly tell myself off mentally for having passed judgement. BUT I DO IT ANYWAY. ALL THE F*CKING TIME. Today, heaven help me, I actually almost said something to a pair of overweight girls in the locker room of my gym, aged maybe 10-11, who were wearing bathing suits and eating ice cream sandwiches (I considered "should you be eating that in here?" instead of my initial gut reaction of "you so don't need those calories; why don't you throw them away?" but thankfully decided neither of these would be appropriate).

The fact is, most of us on this thread would rather lose an eye or a job than regain the weight we've worked so hard to lose (and keep off). If being fat didn't disgust us, we wouldn't have been motivated to lose our weight to begin with. We spend our days working hard to prevent regain, and live in fear of the scale (or our skinny jeans) telling us that we've gained even a few pounds. So, how hypocritical would it be if we DIDN'T feel disgust (or pity) at others who are overweight? Pass judgement when others can't manage what we have? Feel real fear when we see someone who's the shape we used to be, knowing how easy it would be to return there?

I'm expressing all of this because I've really been struggling with these feelings the last couple of months. I'm not proud of it but I also don't see a way to stop thinking like that. What do you do? If you've found ways to think less judgmentally, please share.


Rhiko
04-15-2013, 12:27 AM
I think it's only human nature to judge others and compare them to ourselves. At the moment, my reoccurring judgement is 'if I can do it, then why can't you?' When it comes to children, I think 'How can parents do this to their kids?'.

You are right in that it is bad thinking, but I also think that it helps to keep perspective with what I'm trying to achieve and the future health problems I'm trying to avoid. I can't tell you that you'll ever stop thinking it or whether I think it's unhealthy to be thinking these things. I do think it is unhealthy to say my judgements out loud, which is what you realised too :)

What makes me lessen the judgements is to realise that not everyone has the ability to lose weight and I can't control the lives of others or force them to change because I know a better way. I know a better way for me, but I don't know what their life is like and what's caused them to eat junk and get fat.

Mudpie
04-15-2013, 07:19 AM
I think it's only human nature to judge others and compare them to ourselves. At the moment, my reoccurring judgement is 'if I can do it, then why can't you?' When it comes to children, I think 'How can parents do this to their kids?'.

You are right in that it is bad thinking, but I also think that it helps to keep perspective with what I'm trying to achieve and the future health problems I'm trying to avoid. I can't tell you that you'll ever stop thinking it or whether I think it's unhealthy to be thinking these things. I do think it is unhealthy to say my judgements out loud, which is what you realised too :)

What makes me lessen the judgements is to realise that not everyone has the ability to lose weight and I can't control the lives of others or force them to change because I know a better way. I know a better way for me, but I don't know what their life is like and what's caused them to eat junk and get fat.

Years ago I first lost a lot of weight after some complete stranger yelled "fat *ss" at me from the back of a motorbike roaring past me on the street. :o

While I would never, ever say anthing to someone who is overweight I do make the same type of judgements as you said. But I know, from experience, how painful and humiliating any comments can be about a person's weight and/or body.

I would again restate that after thinking these types of things I make sure I keep my mouth shut.

Dagmar :tape:


JayEll
04-15-2013, 07:38 AM
The fact is, most of us on this thread would rather lose an eye or a job than regain the weight we've worked so hard to lose (and keep off).
And that's another reason why I don't post here much anymore. As someone who struggled hard after maintaining for about two years and ultimately lost the battle, I really feel angry when I see the kind of fat hatred you are expressing. Lose an eye or a job? Really? Think about that some more.

That doesn't mean I don't have those thoughts that you mentioned myself from time to time--society has worked really hard to teach us that point of view. I have them toward others and toward myself. "Wow, look how fat I am."

Thank goodness you didn't tell those little girls to throw away their food!

I think the danger is not in having judgments, but in thinking one's judgments are right and therefore one is better than "those other people." Even if people tell themselves they are thinking those thoughts out of "compassion," it's a twisted compassion that ultimately is based on being superior.

The antidote might be to consciously detach from those judgments. Watch them arise and let them go, without believing they are "true" or "right." And certainly, one shouldn't act on them in any way. In our culture, people who are fat know that they are fat--it hasn't escaped our notice.

In answer to your final question, it would not be hypocritical to give up judgments like that. You can want to be a healthy weight without hating others. (ETA: or yourself!)

Roo2
04-15-2013, 08:06 AM
We all make thousands of judgements on a daily basis. Smell something does this smell Ok? Is it safe to eat?? On and on.

We all may deny it ...but making judgements keeps us alive and safe.

Now commenting on someone else is a Horse of a different color.
We can not help but notice things in our environment ...like wow that is a brightly colored car, that poor dog looks malnourished....and so on!

It is never acceptable to make cruel comments .....but unless you are blind you will notice and make note....that is the reality of it ....to deny the truth may make us feel better about ourselves but it is always there.
When I was fat ....no one ever came right out and called be fat to my face.....but they have no problem calling me skinny now! And people who are overweight will tell me I am too thin???? maybe good manners should go both ways!
My feelings would not have been hurt if someone told me I was fat ..lol my feelings are not hurt ..if you call me skinny..I would have to have a connection with someone to value their opinion...that's just me!
Sometimes we wear our insecurities on our sleeve, but whatever package is on the outside ....I believe the most important one is what is on the inside ....So don't judge a book by it's cover ...as the old saying goes....even though there could be tatters....it could be an Excellent read!:hug:

I am more concerned about the heart ....then the beautiful trappings on the outside...Roo2:carrot::carrot::carrot:

silverbirch
04-15-2013, 08:24 AM
Just after I read this for the first time, I used a loo in a supermarket. Three cubicles. When I came out of my cubicle there was a girl putting on makeup and her friend, both about 14. The friend was in another cubicle, balancing on the loo itself so she could see herself full-length in the mirror. I looked at her and said, "Someone has to sit on that." "Yeah," said the girl. I continued to look at her. She said, "My shoes are clean." I continued to look. She got off. I left.

For me, that was a issue around abusing society and *public health*. I know we have a different health service here in the UK from the US. Perhaps thoughts about the public good come more rapidly to mind (or maybe it's the work I do) but I tend to think this kind of thought when I see someone who is very fat or is eating what I think of as poisonous food. Sometimes I feel a rush of tenderness and fellow-feeling towards the individual, briefly wondering what their story is and how they have become so fat.

most of us on this thread would rather lose an eye or a job than regain the weight we've worked so hard to lose (and keep off)

I don't feel like that. That's really not at the heart of who I am or what I do. And perhaps that's why I, too, don't post here much.

bargoo
04-15-2013, 08:33 AM
Silver. I am sp glad to hear from you. I miss your remarks. please come back. Your comments are valuable.

bargoo
04-15-2013, 08:42 AM
And that's another reason why I don't post here much anymore. As someone who struggled hard after maintaining for about two years and ultimately lost the battle, I really feel angry when I see the kind of fat hatred you are expressing. Lose an eye or a job? Really? Think about that some more.

That doesn't mean I don't have those thoughts that you mentioned myself from time to time--society has worked really hard to teach us that point of view. I have them toward others and toward myself. "Wow, look how fat I am."

Thank goodness you didn't tell those little girls to throw away their food!

I think the danger is not in having judgments, but in thinking one's judgments are right and therefore one is better than "those other people." Even if people tell themselves they are thinking those thoughts out of "compassion," it's a twisted compassion that ultimately is based on being superior.

The antidote might be to consciously detach from those judgments. Watch them arise and let them go, without believing they are "true" or "right." And certainly, one shouldn't act on them in any way. In our culture, people who are fat know that they are fat--it hasn't escaped our notice.

In answer to your final question, it would not be hypocritical to give up judgments like that. You can want to be a healthy weight without hating others. (ETA: or yourself!)

JayELL, I like reading comments of other posters, whether I agree or disagree is not important. It always gives me something to think about. Please reconsider posting here, we learn from each other. If it wasn't for 3fc and comments of all kinds I would never have been able to maintain weight loss. I know because I never was able to do it before.

freelancemomma
04-15-2013, 09:10 AM
whenever I have one of my "oh god she's fat" thoughts, I quickly tell myself off mentally for having passed judgement. BUT I DO IT ANYWAY. I'm not proud of it but I also don't see a way to stop thinking like that. What do you do? If you've found ways to think less judgmentally, please share.

It sounds to me like you're describing fleeting thoughts. We all have nasty, bigoted, shameful fleeting thoughts about EVERYTHING, not just weight. They come and go, like the clouds, and don't mean very much if we balance them with kinder thoughts and behaviours. I don't feel guilty about such thoughts. I just accept them as part of being human, and then -- really and truly -- get on with my workout.


Freelance

saef
04-15-2013, 09:17 AM
My experience is somewhat different from yours, Neurodoc.

I am far harder on myself than I am on anyone else I see. I am like a mean girl in a black comedy when I face myself in the gym mirrors after having a weigh-in that reports a five-pound gain. But when I see other people in the gym, I think, "That was me once. Good for her." Maybe the difference is, I was them once, I'm not just an observer. I was once 257 pounds. I spent over a decade climbing to that weight gradually year after year. And I didn't lose it overnight. When I first made my effort to lose that weight, I was afraid to set foot in a gym. I walked around outside in all kinds of weather, in dark, in sometimes unsafe circumstances, because I was more afraid of being judged adversely than my physical safety. Which is stupid. So those people are **better** than me, if anything. Braver, psychologically stronger. See, this I know: There are some heavier women who have greater peace of mind and self-acceptance than I may ever achieve. Despite my weight loss, which -- so society tells me -- ought to have left me more self-confident and in a better place. No, it didn't. Like that Sheryl Crow song, "If it makes you happy, then why the he!! are you so sad?"

When I see fat people, my mind goes to what I want to call my "writerly" place, where my empathic faculties reside. I tell myself a story about them. "She's coping with late or nonexistent child support payments ... she's got a mother who needs her car keys taken away ... and an autistic child ... maybe she comforts herself with a trip to McDonald's ... she owes back taxes ... she's got thyroid issues ... she's the kindest person you've ever met ... she adores her three cats, one of which needs insulin shots ... She was, until last week, afraid to leave her car at her son's soccer game because she felt she was too fat to be seen ..." I have an endless supply of stories, some from my own experience, some from the boards here. I imagine these people are the exact same people who are posting on the boards here. And I care a lot for the people posting on the boards here. Not just for individuals, but in the abstract. Poor humanity, and all the pain we all carry inside us.

The fact is, most of us on this thread would rather lose an eye or a job than regain the weight we've worked so hard to lose (and keep off)

I wouldn't want to lose an eye. The job is negotiable. I like my job, and it's part of my identity, but it's not my whole identity. If I lost it, I'd have to change the way I live, and spend money, and my pride would hurt horribly, but I think I could get by. I have survived through some boring and tedious jobs, like filing medical records in the basement of a hospital all day long, pushing a shopping cart full of them around. I would piece together some kind of life somehow.

silverbirch
04-15-2013, 09:21 AM
It sounds to me like you're describing fleeting thoughts. /snip/They come and go, like the clouds, and don't mean very much if we balance them with kinder thoughts and behaviours.

Freelance, I do like this. I think I push fleeting thoughts aside, most of the time. One reason for this is that I cannot multi-task and they would get in the way of what I'm trying to do.

freelancemomma
04-15-2013, 09:25 AM
When I see fat people, my mind goes to what I want to call my "writerly" place, where my empathic faculties reside. I tell myself a story about them.

From one writer to another: your stories brought tears to my eyes.

F.

saef
04-15-2013, 09:36 AM
From one writer to another: your stories brought tears to my eyes.

F.

These boards will bring tears to your eyes. People come here and tell their stories. They're honest. It's like a confessional. There is so much pain over self-image and being physically uncomfortable or inept, or feeling judged, it makes my chest hurt sometimes. When I see fat people in public, and I don't know their thoughts or can't hear them talking, it's the opposite of being on these boards, where I can hear their voices but I can't see them. Maybe that's why I'm matching them up in real life, when of course, they are not the same individuals. Not at all: I'm not crazy enough to believe that. But the sentiments, the life experience and the pain have to be pretty much the same.

berryblondeboys
04-15-2013, 09:45 AM
Well, I'm not a maintainer, but I have thoughts on this!

I think "some people" are judgmental type people. They judge everyone for everything and they assume everyone is judging their every move too as well, if you judge, then others must too. My mother in law is like this. She judges and comments on anything and everything. I find it appalling and find her extremely superficial. We basically have nothing in common - not a single thing and of that I'm glad.

But, am I capable of being judgmental? Sure I am. Especially when I see parents ignoring and being mean to their children. I can 'go there' at times and I'm not happy about it.


But not about weight. And honestly, I don't know how how ANYONE who has been overweight before could be judgmental of another overweight person. We all got fat somehow. We let ourselves get there and it took something for us to lose the weight and we had to be ready to lose the weight to do it. So, how can I look at someone who is not yet ready to lose the weight and judge them when I was there at one point too? In this case, it's easy for me to see both sides of the story - thinner and heavier. It's not so in some other cases. Sometimes it's harder for me to understand behavior, so it's easier for me to judge and perhaps unfairly.

When it comes to kids being overweight - that one is so tough. First, no comments should be made by an outsider, ever. Like EVER. You simply do not know their story and saying something could be dangerous.

But from my own experiences and from hearing other people's experiences, you are darned if you do and darned if you don't say or do something to intervene as a parent. My mom was slightly chubby as a teen and her mom said nothing about it. She never forgave her mom for not saying something to maybe make her do something about her weight. So, when I was a teen and gained a little weight, my mom said something to me, it just made me feel worse.

I have two kids (boys). One is rail thin. He is 16.5 years old and 6'2" and 140 pounds. The other is almost 8 and 56" tall and 85 pounds. He is big and strong, but has a TINY bit of a poochy stomach. He tends to chub up a bit.

The approach I have taken with BOTH my kids is to try to be active and to move and to eat good meals. To me, it's not so much about the ice cream and the cookies. It's developing a taste for vegetables and lean proteins and knowing that movement is a way of life - any movement. It's teaching portions, etc. But in the end, even as a parent, it's really hard to control a child's tendencies of being too thin, just right or too heavy. It isn't simple.

alinnell
04-15-2013, 10:55 AM
I'm very judgmental but I keep it to myself. I imagine others judging me all the time, but I don't get paranoid about it.

One thing that I've always enjoyed is people watching. Kind of like the "People of Walmart" website where you just wonder what people have in mind when they wear a particular outfit, YKWIM?

I believe that people that cannot withhold verbal judgement, especially to strangers, is a kind of mental illness (this is in response to what Dagmar experienced, NOT the kind of parental-like guidance that Silver was trying to envoke).

I am extremely envious of you saef~being able to be so empathetic. I think my MIL is like that (although she can judge with the best of us). I don't know if it comes from her running a retirement home for many, many years, but she seems to exude empathy and just that makes people really open up to her. Maybe I'm a little to closed off because no one opens up to me like they do to her. Even my parents were more likely to open up to her than to me (something that I felt was a little weird when it happened).

paperclippy
04-15-2013, 11:42 AM
Andrea, I think the examples in your original post are kind of contradictory. "
"Don't worry about going to the gym when you're fat, people are focusing on their own workouts" and "Don't worry about eating junk food when you're fat, nobody will notice anyway" are very different. From my experience and what I have heard others say, they're both kind of untrue but in very different ways.

When I see a fat person working out, I think, "Good for them, they're trying to make a change." My DH, who has never been obese, has the same feeling about overweight people at the gym. He says he often feels like he wants to go up to them and say "You're doing great" or something like that. I really don't think that people at the gym generally judge fat people for being fat in a negative way, because the fact that that person is IN THE GYM is evidence that they are trying to overcome their weight problem.

However, when I see a fat person eating junk food, I do admit that I have negative judgmental thoughts. I have these same thoughts about myself sometimes. However, I remind myself, when I was losing weight I allowed myself one cheat meal per week. How do I know that that person eating ice cream didn't spend the last week eating nothing but healthy food? (I admit I am more judgmental when observing the contents of people's carts at the supermarket.)

I think judging people is part of human nature. The important thing is to keep your judgments to yourself and not saying anything to the person you are judging. When I was a teenager, maybe 13 years old, my father started telling me that I was fat. Sure, his intent may have been to help me, but the fact is: I was not fat when I was that age. I wasn't skinny, but I certainly wasn't at an unhealthy weight. Being told that I was fat just made me feel like crap, which made me eat more to comfort myself, which made me get actually for real fat.

DH and I talk about this kind of thing because I feel that it's especially important since we're about to have kids, and our kids will be girls. IMO it is never appropriate, ever, to tell a girl or a teenager that she is fat. Nothing good will ever come of it. Similarly, making judgmental comments about other people's weight in front of kids makes them internalize "that is bad, if I am like that then I am a bad person." This applies to judging yourself too! DH has a tendency to say negative things about himself. For example, yesterday he accidentally didn't pull his car into the garage far enough, and when he shut the garage door it hit the bumper of his car and scratched it a little. He comes into the house and says, "I'm so stupid. Why am I always such an idiot?" The fact is that he's not stupid, he just did something dumb on this particular occasion. Smart people do dumb things. But him saying that out loud not only makes other people more inclined to believe that he's stupid, but it makes people question their own intelligence. I mean, for an example, if you hear a supermodel say "I'm so fat," then you think, "Wow, if she is fat, then I must be a real whale."

I guess what I'm trying to say is making judgments about other people and about yourself is normal, but saying them out loud is never a good idea.

(And for the record, I'd rather be fat again than lose an eye or lose my job.)

sacha
04-15-2013, 12:41 PM
I'm sure everyone has judgemental (or fleeting) thoughts from time to time, but since I know how hard long-term maintenance is and how I've been through the ringer to finally get it started, I really do have compassionate thoughts.

Who am I to think badly of the overweight girl eating A&W? Maybe she is not ready to lose. Maybe she does not want to lose (!). Maybe she has worked hard to stay on plan all week and this was her treat. Even at my highest, I allowed myself Wendys once a week.

Most of all, I think about hwen I was at my LOWEST weight of 109lbs (on a 5'5 frame) and I was a terrible person. I drank all the time, I was mean to other girls, and I had overwhelming pride in my figure. Terrible, terrible, terrible!!!

^That experience (along with later consequences which I am grateful for, looking back almost 8ish years), taught me that humility is sooo important. So no, I try not to think such things.

Desiderata
04-15-2013, 01:25 PM
My problem at the moment is how harshly I judge myself for judging. :D

(Funny, but true - EDIT - and I mean in a much broader sense than just judging other people for their weight.)

geoblewis
04-15-2013, 01:29 PM
As a seriously fat, judged person, I have seen the look of judgement in the eyes of those who have no inclination to hide how they feel about how I seem to have ruined their vista for the moment. It's an assessive look, followed by the look of disdain. I'm pretty sure they've put very little thought into what's going on between their two ears at that moment. And the moment their eyes have moved back to their path, I am gone from their memories forever. And that's about how much time I spend on them in my mind as well. But I do like to stare back with a similar level of judgement and disgust shooting from my eyes. And I make eye contact on occasion. Hope it makes them feel uncomfortable. It sure was a fun moment for me!

I'm not immune to thoughts of judgement. Mostly reserved for drivers with short attention spans and no peripheral vision or knowlegde of the rules. We all have our pet peeves.

I am trying to practice compassion these days. A difficult thing for me to do, since I wasn't raised with any idea of what it was. But I'm sure many of "those idiot drivers" are perfectly lovely people once I got to spend a little time with them. Just like I know I am well-loved by all who know me. Which makes me feel pretty immune to the serial-judgers out there. I guess if I'm doing my job to let my loved ones know how much they are loved, I'm helping them feel better about themselves and be more bullet-proof, or generally unconcerned by what others' view of them may be.

geoblewis
04-15-2013, 01:39 PM
Forgot to mention my obsession with evaluating other people's grocery carts. You will never find junk food in my cart. EVER. Always plenty of fresh organic veggies, grass-fed meats, wild-caught fish, healthy sources of fat. I swear, there is a halo hovering over my cart every time I go to the store. One time, at the checkout stand at Costco, people actually remarked that my cart was the healthiest-looking cart they had ever seen there and they wondered how I could go through the whole warehouse and not even let a single box of brownie mix or frozen treats land in my cart.

So, when I'm at the market and I see some skinny person with a cart full of chips, candy, booze, ice cream, and frozen TV dinners in front of me in line, I am VERY guilty of a full blown pity party as I stand there, looking at my asparagus and skinless chicken breasts and wondering why they look like they do and I look like I do. And then I remember that I'm blessed to be very healthy and strong, and I'm grateful that I can afford to eat well.

But I still judge the carts!

traveling michele
04-15-2013, 02:47 PM
So, when I'm at the market and I see some skinny person with a cart full of chips, candy, booze, ice cream, and frozen TV dinners in front of me in line, I am VERY guilty of a full blown pity party as I stand there, looking at my asparagus and skinless chicken breasts and wondering why they look like they do and I look like I do. And then I remember that I'm blessed to be very healthy and strong, and I'm grateful that I can afford to eat well.

But I still judge the carts!

Oh, I try not to do this, but I do too! I also make up stories like Saef-- maybe they're having a party and the food is for their guests. Maybe their college age kids are home and they are stocking the fridge and cabinets with their favorites. I try very hard not to be judgemental but I know it sneaks in there now and then. My mom (rail thin-- looked anorexic but ate what she wanted---also smoked and drank coffee all day) used to make comments about heavy people in stores and restaurants-- she thought she was out of earshot-- I was horrified and shushing her--- and trying to explain that not everyone was trying to GAIN weight like her.

ChickieChicks
04-15-2013, 03:50 PM
I think it took a lot of guts for neuro doc to voice these feelings! Don't go crazy n her!

I, too, make up scenarios about why someone at the gym is overweight and now starting to work out, or why someone's cart is filled with pop and hostess cupcakes.... Mostly because I find people's personal stories very diverse and fascinating, and that every year I get older I realize that I don't know half of what I think I know about people...

That being said....we all judge. No one s better than anyone else... Just keep it to yourself! And I think the point of the original post was to being to light how radically the weightloss progress can change your outlook. For some people, maintenance has made us less understanding, because hey...we did it!...why can't you?? (Cue the personal stories and individual genetic makeup.....yadda yadda.) I can relate to neurodoc, because I often look at "this" me and find it a bit different that the "then" me. But it isn't solely because of weight loss. Losing weight over two years is still TWO YEARS of changing and growing as an adult. A lot can happen.

Sum38
04-15-2013, 04:13 PM
I find it interesting; at 160 pounds and size 10. I am a fat cow to a 115 pound person, but I am a skinny biotch to a 250 pound person. I am sure I have been judged within the last week because of my weight....one way or the other.

-- We all judge :( I certainly do, and it does not end at weight; clothes, hygiene, hair, teeth (I am so guilty on that!) wealth, employment status, educational level and what kind of a speller someone is -- hehe; I am a foreigner and make all sorts of spelling/grammatical errors and I am sure someone has judged me based on that ;)

I think it took a lot of strength of the OP to write this one out. What I love about 3FC, we have all sorts of interesting topics, sometimes touchy ones, like the one at hand.

Candeka
04-15-2013, 04:13 PM
The more I've lost and the more I've learned about healthy food and eating, the more judgmental I have become. I can't help it. I'd never say it to someones face, but my brain is just an jerk. I applaud the OP for posting this.

On these boards, I see skinny-hate going on ALL THE TIME. "I'd rather be fat then all bones" "I'd NEVER want to be as skinny as her", and yet that is okay. Say one unpleasant thing about an overweight person and it's like you punched grandma.

krampus
04-15-2013, 04:44 PM
I'm the opposite! Losing weight and keeping it off has made me a lot more compassionate and sympathetic, because let's be real - it's a mindf@%k of sorts, much sacrifice and serious change must be made, and since I've learned the science of calorie burns and consumption and blahblahblah if anything, it's easier for me to see why so many people are stuck at a weight they don't want to be at.

I busted my butt losing "not that much" weight, but when I was quite insecure about my figure I was really judgmental of very overweight people. Now I just...don't care or notice, though I do bite my tongue when I overhear someone saying they walked 10 minutes to the store and burned off the equivalent calories of an ice cream cone. I have definitely noticed a total absence of catty "should she really be wearing that?" thoughts.

I think spending time with close friends and loved ones in real life who have struggled with weight helps get those sorts of feelings out in a safe space.

TurboMammoth
04-15-2013, 05:40 PM
Such an interesting thread! (Pretty much a newcomer in the maintenance crew, that is a new thing for me, sorry for jumping in like this!)

I had a related experience this morning.

I was running around the park and I saw this girl who was running in my direction. She was red, trying to catch her breath, jogging, and yes, overweight. I smiled at her but she must have felt I was looking at her or something, she gazed down with that look on her face. It looked like she was ashamed, or something.

I seriously wanted to turn around and hug her. I just wanted to tell her ''YOU F ROCK, GIRL!'', ''KEEP IT UP, YOU'RE DOING AMAZING, YOU'RE ALMOST AT THE END OF THE LOOK!''. I understood, as I kept running, that she probably thought I was judging her. I was running, running faster than her, not really breathing hard. I remembered how I felt ashamed running around the park the first time, with all this extra weight wiggling around me as I was trying to catch my breath after running 500 meters. So, I just wanted to turn around, hug the girl, tell her I understand and that it gets better.

But because she would have probably thought really weird of a random stranger hugging her in the middle of the bike path, I did not do that... I only hope the smile I gave her encouraged her the way I wanted to do.

EagleRiverDee
04-15-2013, 05:46 PM
Oh yes. I will admit this. Sometimes it's like there's an evil thing inside of me that thinks a nasty thought before I can consciously squash it. I'm really good at not saying what first pops into my head, but I readily confess- I'm not a nice person sometimes. Inside. I fake it on the outside and try to be supportive and kind in what I say and what I do. And then I pray that God will help change me on the inside.

karenrn
04-15-2013, 05:53 PM
I'm with you neurodoc. I too judge people at times, luckily nothing comes out of my mouth. I post seldom, practically never and that's not going to change based on the self righteous responses I see here.

midwife
04-15-2013, 08:27 PM
.

I'm expressing all of this because I've really been struggling with these feelings the last couple of months. I'm not proud of it but I also don't see a way to stop thinking like that. What do you do? If you've found ways to think less judgmentally, please share.

What helps me to be less judgmental is trying to be compassionate. I like what Saef said about creating a story about people. People carry their own baggage, whether it is anxiety, depression, abuse or self-loathing. I find trying to extend compassion to them is a good first step in reducing judgment. I am also very glad that you self-edited and did not say anything to those girls in the locker room.

I also try to remind myself that the only person I can control is myself. What other people do is really none of my business.

As an aside, I have regained the weight I lost. I am not happy about it, but I wouldn't trade an eye or a job to have it magically lost again, either, although I recognize that you may have been facetious in your statement.

Finally, I agree that neurodoc was brave to share her feelings. I think this can be an important thread. It has a potential to be a hurtful thread, however, and I hope that everyone can share opinions respectfully and with kindness.

Posts that are insulting are subject to deletion.

Vex
04-15-2013, 08:41 PM
I think those things, but then I force myself to think, "What don't I know?"

For example, the 2 girls in bathing suits? What are things I may not know? Maybe those are yogurt bars or skinny cow bars.

Or, maybe I'm looking at someone in a restaurant, overweight, and maybe they're having a pizza. What don't I know? Maybe that person has already lost 100 lbs and it's their birthday.

Or....maybe I see an large man riding one of those carts in the store? What don't I know? Maybe he lost his leg in the service and can't walk?

We see a snapshot of someone at a given time. We can't possibly know or judge everything about them from that one fleeting moment.

junebug41
04-16-2013, 11:24 AM
We see a snapshot of someone at a given time. We can't possibly know or judge everything about them from that one fleeting moment.

I completely agree and this is how I approach it.

I'm an ugly runner. I'm slow. I'm loud. I wheeze. I'm certainly not athletic in my appearance. But I've upped my running lately despite all of this and I wonder: what must people think when they see me abusing a treadmill at the gym? I certainly don't look like a woman who has maintained a 75lb weight loss for 9 years through major life events, pregnancy, etc...? Could they do something like that? Do they know what a challenge that is in and of itself?

Probably not. They probably see a goofy looking woman with a red face who has a bad knee and can't run an uninterrupted mile. So yes, "what don't I know" is the first question I ask myself.

lin43
04-16-2013, 06:28 PM
This is such an interesting thread. To the OP, I think you're courageous to be so honest about your feelings. Toward the end of your post, though, you seemed to suggest that you didn't think you would be able to do anything about those feelings, and I disagree. I may be in the minority here in thinking that "I can't help the way I feel" (generic comment, not implying you stated that) is a cop-out of sorts. I believe we can help the way we feel if we really want to change our heart condition. Saef offered one good way, i.e., making a conscious effort to view people on a real, human level. Some time ago, I decided that I needed to work on my character, and one aspect of that was becoming less judgmental. I had started reading the Bible, and I realized Jesus loves me with all my faults, and I wanted to try to view others as He views us. (Not trying to preach here; just sharing my experience). Now, when I have negative thoughts about something and I'm ashamed of those thoughts, I will purposely try to change my reaction---fake it 'til it becomes a habit of sorts. From habit it changes to real feeling, and I find that I'm becoming a more empathetic person. Of course, I fail time and time again, but I won't give up, and I do see improvement.

OP, I'm definitely not trying to be self-righteous. I'm just trying to offer you some hope that you can change if you want to.

Lecomtes
04-16-2013, 09:54 PM
THANK YOU FOR WRITING THIS! (below)

My experience is somewhat different from yours, Neurodoc.

I am far harder on myself than I am on anyone else I see. I am like a mean girl in a black comedy when I face myself in the gym mirrors after having a weigh-in that reports a five-pound gain. But when I see other people in the gym, I think, "That was me once. Good for her." Maybe the difference is, I was them once, I'm not just an observer. I was once 257 pounds. I spent over a decade climbing to that weight gradually year after year. And I didn't lose it overnight. When I first made my effort to lose that weight, I was afraid to set foot in a gym. I walked around outside in all kinds of weather, in dark, in sometimes unsafe circumstances, because I was more afraid of being judged adversely than my physical safety. Which is stupid. So those people are **better** than me, if anything. Braver, psychologically stronger. See, this I know: There are some heavier women who have greater peace of mind and self-acceptance than I may ever achieve. Despite my weight loss, which -- so society tells me -- ought to have left me more self-confident and in a better place. No, it didn't. Like that Sheryl Crow song, "If it makes you happy, then why the he!! are you so sad?"

When I see fat people, my mind goes to what I want to call my "writerly" place, where my empathic faculties reside. I tell myself a story about them. "She's coping with late or nonexistent child support payments ... she's got a mother who needs her car keys taken away ... and an autistic child ... maybe she comforts herself with a trip to McDonald's ... she owes back taxes ... she's got thyroid issues ... she's the kindest person you've ever met ... she adores her three cats, one of which needs insulin shots ... She was, until last week, afraid to leave her car at her son's soccer game because she felt she was too fat to be seen ..." I have an endless supply of stories, some from my own experience, some from the boards here. I imagine these people are the exact same people who are posting on the boards here. And I care a lot for the people posting on the boards here. Not just for individuals, but in the abstract. Poor humanity, and all the pain we all carry inside us.



I wouldn't want to lose an eye. The job is negotiable. I like my job, and it's part of my identity, but it's not my whole identity. If I lost it, I'd have to change the way I live, and spend money, and my pride would hurt horribly, but I think I could get by. I have survived through some boring and tedious jobs, like filing medical records in the basement of a hospital all day long, pushing a shopping cart full of them around. I would piece together some kind of life somehow.



To OP...I weigh 270 pounds after a 40 pound loss...trust me, people as fat as me don't even need you to say anything to know what you are thinking. The constant air of judgement permeates our physical environment and eventually our psyches. People don't get this fat because they don't understand simple thermodynamics...they get this fat because the culture is toxic. For years I avoided being seen, it's pretty hard to lose weight and foster healthy eating without being seen.
Judgement is an adaptive trait, I get that. However there is a difference between noticing peoples physical attributes and assuming to understand why they possess said attributes. When you see someone is a wheelchair, do you feel sympathy for them or do you assume they were driving drunk?
We all struggle with maintaining a compassionate mind I think, and what better way to promote that then encouraging just such a discussion as you have! :) Thanks for posting!

neurodoc
04-16-2013, 11:04 PM
Last night, I spent 20 minutes writing a carefully thought-out, lengthy post and then lost it when I accidentally hit the back arrow on my browser. I was so mad that I couldn't face re-doing it. Now, I no longer remember a lot of what I wrote.

Thank you to everyone who took the time to respond. Whether you appreciated my honesty, admitted that you do it too, were justifiably upset that I could be judgemental when I've "been there and done that," or tried to answer my question with suggestions of how to overcome the negative thinking, I want you to know that the dialogue is important to me. And, lin43, I DO believe it's possible to change; I just don't know how to do it, which is why I asked the question to begin with. I'm learning from all of you that the trick to staying empathetic rather than either condescending or disgusted is to mentally create the "backstory" of each person's individual struggle as much as possible. And to give them credit FOR the struggle, even if you don't think there is one (e.g., the shopping cart full of junk food). I also appreciate the person who basically encouraged me to "fake it til I make it" - to act as though I'm completely nonjudgemental, because if I do that often enough, I will gradually become more that way.

In my professional life as a physician, I often need to tell someone that their lifestyle puts them at risk for strokes (often in the setting of the person already having had one or more strokes) and that if they want to prevent further damage, they must learn to eat differently and move more regularly and more vigorously. When I'm in "doctor mode," I seem to be naturally more attuned to the challenges these patients face in order to do what I've asked, and don't think those catty thoughts nearly as often. I would try to engage that mindset more often, but it seems to go hand in hand with a need to give advice, which I clearly am not going to do to strangers who are not asking me for it.

Lecomtes
04-16-2013, 11:10 PM
Oh my, I think I would grow so frustrated with people if I were a physician and had to repeatedly remind them their lifestyle is killing them, sometimes, I assume, to no positive effect...although I hope many more people do become motivated to change! I've actually never had a physician who had the chutzpah to bring up my bulk. I commend those who do! I wonder how the trajectory of my life might have been different if my pediatrician ever suggested to my mom that it's not healthy or OK for a 5th grader to weigh 180lbs! It's hard to say I guess.

I really like the back story and "fake it to make it" ideas too. Good practices for anybody to employ!

mariposssa
04-17-2013, 12:45 AM
I'm here to say, you're not just paranoid. It's not just in your head. People really are that shallow, myself included, and make comparisons and pass judgement all the time. I'm not proud of it, it's not something I do on purpose, and whenever I have one of my "oh god she's fat" thoughts, I quickly tell myself off mentally for having passed judgement. BUT I DO IT ANYWAY. ALL THE F*CKING TIME. Today, heaven help me, I actually almost said something to a pair of overweight girls in the locker room of my gym, aged maybe 10-11, who were wearing bathing suits and eating ice cream sandwiches (I considered "should you be eating that in here?" instead of my initial gut reaction of "you so don't need those calories; why don't you throw them away?" but thankfully decided neither of these would be appropriate).


I'm expressing all of this because I've really been struggling with these feelings the last couple of months. I'm not proud of it but I also don't see a way to stop thinking like that. What do you do? If you've found ways to think less judgmentally, please share.

Everybody judges. It happens to all of us even when we are actively trying to be positive. Since you specifically said you can't see any way to stop the pattern and that you are looking for ways that work; I figure you are really looking for that kind of feedback and not a pat on the back or an attack for feeling what you are feeling.

So...you have become aware of the negativity, instead of "mentally telling yourself off" and continuing the negative thought pattern, here's something more productive you could try. If the person is still in your path compliment them on something, anything. You sent a negative vibe in her direction and projected your negative thoughts onto her; so try to think of a positive to help balance it out. Compliment her shoes, her hair, the color of her shirt, her eyes, etc. Change the negative vibe as quickly as possible, instead of continuing it by beating yourself up for having the thought. Kindness. Pass it on. If the person is gone before you realized the judging behavior, you can still change it if you practice random acts of kindness.

The goal is to lift people up, not bring them down...especially if we are talking about overweight people who are at the gym trying to improve their life. If you have to; think about butterflies, rainbows, unicorns and pixie dust. Sing a song that makes you want to smile or dance. Whatever it takes. As long as you keep thinking negatively, you perpetuate the cycle of negativity and you get it given back to you in terms of kharma or the Golden rule or you reap what you sow.

CherryPie99
04-17-2013, 08:36 AM
This discussion has been "renting space" in my head ever since I read the first post!! I've been thinking a lot about it and my own role in judging people.

Unlike many people here that were "just" overweight, I was hugely morbidly obese. So my experience in being judged was pretty much a daily experience.

Now that I am thin, I find a couple of things - when I see very large people, I sometimes want to run over to them and tell them that they CAN change, that their lives can be different - I want to "save" them.

However, I find myself EXTREMELY judgmental when it comes to 2 things - people that are SLOVENLY and obese. If they are unwashed or dress completely inappropriately for their body I tend to get judgmental. I have always taken pride in my appearance, even at my highest weight. Secondly, I tend to be extremely judgmental about people who make excuses for their behaviors - for example saying that they don't have time and "have to" eat fast food.

These are not things that I'm proud of, they are things that I process and re-process. But, I will say this - and this is going to tick some people off - there is no LAW saying that just because I was fat once, I have to be compassionate and caring with people who are now fat. I have the "right" to judge people if I want to. Who says that I have to be that "bigger" (no pun intended) person? There is nothing inherently wrong in judging someone else, IMO. If it's something that you want to change, then it is an issue that you can work on, but who says that we have to be nice to everyone in the world?

Finally, it is interesting that now that I am thin, I am STILL judged. Just the other day I was in a meeting and the room was FREEZING. I was all huddled up and rubbing my arms and my boss said - in a voice dripping with sarcasm - "Well, maybe if you had more then 3% body fat you wouldn't be so cold all the time!" And I later overheard him tell someone that I am "obsessed" with running and that's not healthy. So you can't win...

Jen

sacha
04-17-2013, 08:47 AM
Likewise, how many people fill up a super healthy grocery cart and then still go out for fast food that night? I know I've done it.... stare at my cart all you want but don't think that's all I eat!

junebug41
04-17-2013, 09:10 AM
ChrisMohr, those are great observations and I think those fears are present in many folks, me included. Me especially! Years later I project these fears through judging others. I don't have much to add now- there's so much to consider in this thread, but I appreciated your thoughts.

ChrisMohr
04-17-2013, 09:18 AM
I'm a judging type too. As several of us have noted, we are much harder on ourselves than we are on others. Once, Karen and I noticed that our conversations often degenerated into judge-fests of even our dearest friends. I inquired into the source of that judgment and first felt a wave of grief. Then I realized that I was holding certain unconscious beliefs:
1) If I ever relax and let myself just be myself, I will gain weight, do no work, accomplish nothing in my life, and generally just allow the rotten person I am give full expression.
2) Whenever I judge someone else, I am at least ten times as guilty as they are of the same thing, at least potentially.
3) Judgment of others is a way of transforming my own grief, and my own fears.
4.) The only motivator I know is self-judgment: fear of being consumed by self-loathing motivates me to do the things that keep those awful feelings at bay.
Feeling grief and self-hatred and lack of confidence/self-trust is not easy but it has helped ease judgments. Judgments do arise still, but the work I have done on myself has made that process more transparent. Since I am less than a year into my own maintenance and I gained ten pounds over the winter, it's too early for me to be very judgmental of others who are overweight. What I feel now is simple fear that soon I will be the same as them! So for the time being, my insecurity is so right out there, I can't use the tactic of judgment much to protect myself from that fear. If I have a couple years of success on maintenance I will certainly watch that tho!
In the meantime, I still compare my body to those of others, especially other men, almost constantly. It's almost like I'm placing myself somewhere on a slimness/fitness hierarchy that measures my worth.

ICUwishing
04-17-2013, 09:28 AM
Phenomenal discussion! I've been working very hard for about a year and a half to silence my negative inner dialog, primarily directed at myself but often at others. I decided I needed to change it because it wasn't adding any value to my life and I wanted that brainspace back. It's a gradual process and I am by no definition an expert. Chris's experience with fear mirrors my own - the root of my negativity sprouted from fears, which in my case, have to do with "living up to my potential." Mostly, my technique is to stop the thought, ask myself "Where's your evidence?" and if there isn't any, to move on.

ubergirl
04-17-2013, 10:40 AM
The fact is, most of us on this thread would rather lose an eye or a job than regain the weight we've worked so hard to lose (and keep off). If being fat didn't disgust us, we wouldn't have been motivated to lose our weight to begin with. We spend our days working hard to prevent regain, and live in fear of the scale (or our skinny jeans) telling us that we've gained even a few pounds. So, how hypocritical would it be if we DIDN'T feel disgust (or pity) at others who are overweight? Pass judgement when others can't manage what we have? Feel real fear when we see someone who's the shape we used to be, knowing how easy it would be to return there?



Well, I'm here waving from the other side of the abyss. I did regain most of my weight loss and am now struggling to get it back. I do not believe that I regained the weight because I didn't care that much. I regained because I never really solved some of my underlying issues and so when I hit a period of extreme stress, after holding it together for more than two years, I ended up reverting back to the behaviors that made me fat in the first place.

And I can tell you right now that I would absolutely NOT rather lose an eye or my job than be fat. I don't like being fat much, but one thing that being normal-sized taught me was to like myself. YUP. I find it very difficult to muster the kind of self-hatred that actually drove me to lose the weight in the first place.

I'm working on losing the weight again, but I don't hate myself anymore. I look at my own fattest pictures with compassion and that allows me to look at everyone else with compassion as well.

Furthermore, I can be fat and do my job. I can be fat and get all dressed up and stand in front of a room and give inspirational speeches and people will line up afterwards to get my signature and all this while I AM STILL FAT. It's kind of like Dorothy and the ruby slippers. I had the power all along: the power to believe that I am good enough the way I am. I did not need to lose 110 lbs to turn into the person I want to be. I already am that person, and even if you look at me funny at the gym, quite frankly, I probably won't notice.

But, I was not born like this. I'm over 50 and I think I wasted a lot of my life judging myself way too hard, and then being hard on others because I thought they were looking at me the way I was looking at them-- judgmentally.

Your awareness that you are doing this and not liking it about yourself is a sure sign that you are not a bad person or evil or cruel or judgmental, but I might guess that you are not able to look at your own fat pictures with compassion and equanimity.

Being fat is unpleasant for many reasons, but bad enough to lose a beloved job or an eye? Absolutely not.

JenMusic
04-17-2013, 11:57 AM
I've been thinking and processing this discussion. neurodoc - Kudos to you for starting it! If we can't discuss things like this on 3FC, where can we discuss them?

I will often catch myself having a judgmental thought about someone - weight related or not - and refer to myself as "Judgy McJudgerson." That sort of brings my thought process to the surface and allows me to recognize what I'm doing, which is the first step to stopping - which I, like others in this thread, am trying to do.

But yes, I judge. I think some of mine might be fear, as Chris said, but also a huge part of it is jealousy. I'm jealous of people who don't (seem to) care about the cookie they're eating, or if their bra shows some back fat, or if they worked out that day or - whatever. Now, I'm fully aware this RIDICULOUS. I was overweight/obese my whole life, and I definitely didn't enjoy it, but I obviously miss that place of ignorance. I'm not even sure if that makes sense. In any case, I'm aware that my judging is much more about my unresolved issues than about that person I'm judging.

The only time I get truly aggravated and judgmental is when it's people close to me (family and good friends) whine and complain about their weight/fitness while eating an entire pizza followed by a gigantic ice cream sundae (or whatever). If you're going to eat, eat and enjoy it. But don't complain that you "can't lose weight" when you have the information you need to get started, but have made a choice not to.

rubidoux
04-17-2013, 01:20 PM
Such an interesting discussion! And usually I get really ticked/offended with the people who disagree w me on this sort of thing, but now I realize that it's probably just that I'm ticked that I'm the ONLY one with my views and feel like the world is a terrible place. But here it looks like the "sides" are more evenly matched. It makes me feel less judgmental. :)

Anyway, I think I see this very much like the poster who said that she invents stories for people to explain things that one might otherwise be judgmental about. I know from my own life and from my work with prisoners that people don't do anything in a vacuum. We are all a product of our experiences and our environment and the people that have effected us. Nobody just one day decides they are going to be fat (or stay fat). It is a painful and difficult life to lead, as we all know. And I don't believe that there's a person out there who, if they had the confidence and the self-love and the know how and support from their loved ones would not be taking care of themselves. (I do think, though, that there is more than one way to take care of oneself and becoming "normal weighted" is not the only way.)

One thing I have noticed about this topic (and there is a similar topic going on now on a low carb forum and I see the same there) is that, the people who were never *really big* tend to be more judgmental. I think it is harder for those of us who have really felt the judgment and even remained fat and overeating and not doing whatever it is that you judgmental folks think we should be doing while feeling that judgement, to be that way towards others.

And one thing I just wanted to mention, OP, because you're a doctor, I do think you really have a duty to change this about yourself. I know that you said things are different with your patients, but I cannot help but believe that some of it gets through. If you weren't a doctor, I would say you don't owe it to anyone to change, you are who you are. But you've put yourself out there in a position where it just is not okay to lack compassion in this area. As a fat type I diabetic, I have actually felt like I had fairly good luck with doctors regarding my weight, in terms of how respectful and understanding they've been. I never *felt* discriminated against. But now I am kind of realizing that my endo who I saw for about ten years just severely underestimated me. I don't think his pushing would have helped bc I didn't know how to lose weight and he didn't know how to help me lose weight. But I'll tell you that once I figured it out (I have tried every diet known to man, and it wasn't until I stumbled upon 85% fat that I suddenly and shockingly started losing) it became clear to me that he just thought I was a lazy fat person who wasn't willing to put in the work.

rubidoux
04-17-2013, 03:21 PM
I find it really interesting that this thread ( http://www.3fatchicks.com/forum/body-image-issues-after-weight-loss-219/ ) is going on at the same time and there seems to be a pretty strong consensus that it is the fat person's fault that they are fat. If it is the fault of the fat person, then I'm not sure why we shouldn't be judgmental. Seems sort of like the flip side of the same question.

Roo2
04-17-2013, 03:50 PM
I find it really interesting that this thread ( http://www.3fatchicks.com/forum/body-image-issues-after-weight-loss-219/ ) is going on at the same time and there seems to be a pretty strong consensus that it is the fat person's fault that they are fat. If it is the fault of the fat person, then I'm not sure why we shouldn't be judgmental. Seems sort of like the flip side of the same question.

I don't think so , but you are entitled to read into it whatever you want!:hug:

I was looking for information and ran across this...so I Never said or Implied anything ...you inserted your feelings or possibly fears .

I also googled that statement and was surprised what popped up!:dizzy:

My anxiety closet does not get opened up by merely asking questions or pondering ideas . If we can not be free to express thoughts without being slapped with a label ...That is pretty sad ...and close minded ,IMO!
I feel enlightened to read the various responses and encouraged that people share their opinion. We all do not need to hold the same opinions or values ...that is what makes life interesting!
So please don't feel the need to paint people into a tiny little corner of intolerance.... I sincerely do not believe anyone meant it that way.

Guess what I lost over 100 lbs ....so that makes me fat ...that and couple of bucks will get me a cup of coffee! I do not fear the word or the sight ...I chose that I was not going to live that unhealthy way. Did I hate myself ....no ...did I have a good life ?? Yes ....have the same DH and family a hundred pounds later...and the same friends...same career....and same values.
I wanted to lose the weight to be healthier ....not because of some deep seated hate or fear of fat.
Please know that I would never mean to insult you .....and if somehow I have ...I apologize:hug:
I think it is healthy to have open dialogue...and thought we could be open and honest with each other here:)

Roo2:carrot::carrot::carrot:

saef
04-17-2013, 05:11 PM
Okay, I'm opening up a can of worms here, I know, but I've observed that peoples' belief regarding what causes obesity (or who or what is to blame) closely resembles their sociopolitical and religious beliefs. The degree of personal responsibility and agency, societal and familial influence, etc., that they assign specifically resembles how they'd respond if you asked who's responsible when someone commits a morally reprehensible action or crime.

So what I'm saying is that any one time on this forum, you'll see different theories espoused, just the way you'd hear people attesting to different political affiliations or religions.

And the subject is just as touchy.

I never realized till spending a lot of time at 3FC forums that "why I'm/we're/they're fat" can become one of those conversational minefields like politics and religion.

And so is the different ways of eating and the methods and processes we follow to rid ourselves of this fat.

"Your body is a battlefield." Yes, indeed.

Which actually dovetails neatly into the idea of judging or being judgmental.

Yes, there's science involved, and some objective mathematical calculations, but beyond that ... tread softly, is what I'm always telling myself.

This has been a pretty constructive thread, but maybe some of you see what I mean.

rubidoux
04-17-2013, 05:18 PM
I'm sorry, Roo, but I don't understand a lot of your post. I'm not sure what you googled and I'm not sure why you seem to think my anxiety closet is open. I definitely wasn't thinking anything you said was a personal attack on me or that you were even taking a position. I certainly don't feel insulted.

I think it's great that you lost weight! I don't have any trouble w that. I have lost some myself. :)

I don't think I said anywhere that we shouldn't share our opinions. In fact, I think it's pretty interesting to hear what other people think.

Desiderata
04-17-2013, 05:28 PM
I think you're very much onto something, saef. Actually, I tried searching the forums for an old post your comments reminded me of, and I found this gem (http://www.3fatchicks.com/forum/3375363-post6.html) you posted 3 years ago. (I like your thoughts here, down to noting how sports team devotion is another phenomenon similar to religion...)

What I was looking for was this post by kaplods (http://www.3fatchicks.com/forum/4568377-post24.html) from a few months ago - she had a great point about the divisiveness between dieting plans looking an awful lot like disagreements between religious sects, down to the part where the casual bystander would be bewildered over how many hackles get raised over such small things. :)

Anyway, good point that the minefield is there not only in what specifics we choose to adhere to/advocate for, but in how we define and see the overall issue as well.

Lecomtes
04-17-2013, 05:31 PM
One thing I have noticed about this topic (and there is a similar topic going on now on a low carb forum and I see the same there) is that, the people who were never *really big* tend to be more judgmental. I think it is harder for those of us who have really felt the judgment and even remained fat and overeating and not doing whatever it is that you judgmental folks think we should be doing while feeling that judgement, to be that way towards others.



I have noticed this too, and when I see other large people, I typically just feel empathy for them and wonder about where they might be on their journey (denial, indifference, the spark of change perhaps?). Of course, I am currently a very large person myself, so perhaps my perspective is invalid in that area! Haha, However, when I did briefly attain a "healthy weight" in HS, as I wrote in another thread, I was very disappointed in people...that I was suddenly treated kindly and given attention by men. I didn't want to be treated that way if it was only due to my physique, I became very depressed and regained the weight.

This thread has been "renting space" in my head as well...some of the phrases turned have had me thinking...I could have very well been the obese person with unhealthy food in my cart...

Since I was an obese child I always felt embarrassed about eating in front of people...probably because other children and my father would directly say...I shouldn't be eating that/so much/dessert etc., in front of others. And of course...nobody makes such comments to a thin child eating the exact same thing...only AFTER a child is visibly overweight do such comments become a daily experience for them. I was so keenly aware of and hurt by their judgement that I avoided eating around others...further fostering an unhealthy relationship with food.
To this day I struggle with it...Since Dec. 31st I have eaten about 1500 kcals or less each day. I track my food...but each Saturday my fiance and I will either go out for a meal or make something "off-plan" for dinner, including a portioned dessert. I am mortified of people hearing me order dessert, or seeing me purchase something like chips and BBQ food at the store...even though I know I will still only have eaten 1500 kcals for the day.
I exercise daily, I eat a moderate, primarily plant-based diet, but I'm still "big" and as long as I am...There will be people judging my choice to have dessert on Saturdays...that says a lot about how big people are perceived by "thinner" people...how we are judged.
As long as I'm visibly big, people will judge me to be lazy. I was also keenly aware of this as a child, and so put every ounce of my energy into my studies...so that if I couldn't be thin, well, at least I could be smart. Now in college, (Junior year Microbio/Chem) I will graduate with honors, I have received several scholarships and academic achievement awards. I share this because, even as my accomplishments accumulate...I'm still trying to convince MYSELF that I am OK...That I am not some lazy, worthless, fat person piling up the national debt with my health problems (as I am frequently reminded of in the college environment). No matter how many hours I study, work in the lab, no matter how hard I try...as long as I am visibly fat...I am lazy. I am active every day now...yet most of the people who see me will assume otherwise...and possibly even avoid getting to know me because of it.
I don't blame my weight or my circumstances or on the mentality of the thin...but I think it would be wonderful to see this country move beyond hating on fat people and into providing an environment where we can feel safe/comfortable doing normal things...like going to the gym or eating out. I'm not sure what that would look like, and I know some have said if you took away the shame nobody would have any motivation to lose. I for one didn't have ANY motivation to lose this weight before my mom nearly died from a recurring infection (diabetic)...so the whole judgement piece I can't say helped me as an individual, I feel it hurt me as you can probably tell by my ranting. :)

-Sorry this is so long/disorganized/off original topic, haha! I just had these things on my mind. This thread had me pondering all day...now I am going to be paying much more attention to how I judge others. :) So many INSPIRING women (and men?) on this forum. I so appreciate all the thoughtfully composed opinions and stories. Love 3FC!

berryblondeboys
04-17-2013, 05:37 PM
In my professional life as a physician, I often need to tell someone that their lifestyle puts them at risk for strokes (often in the setting of the person already having had one or more strokes) and that if they want to prevent further damage, they must learn to eat differently and move more regularly and more vigorously. When I'm in "doctor mode," I seem to be naturally more attuned to the challenges these patients face in order to do what I've asked, and don't think those catty thoughts nearly as often. I would try to engage that mindset more often, but it seems to go hand in hand with a need to give advice, which I clearly am not going to do to strangers who are not asking me for it.


I would say that because you ARE a physician that it probably makes it harder not to judge.

I'm not a doctor, not married to one and I don't play one on TV :D But... My mother in law is a retired psychiatrist and neurologist. My husband's cousin and aunt are periodontists. They work(ed) with people all the time and gave advice on how to take care of their bodies, health, teeth, etc... and what happens? Most people don't do it. Excuses are made.

If you see that day in and day out - year after year - especially as a physician, raised cholesterol, elevated blood pressure, diabetes, etc. Most of which can be controlled with diet and exercise. You prescribe diet and exercise and a year later the patient comes back having gained more weight and not doing anything for their health - they just want you to fix it with a drug. They have excuse after excuse.

Then, when you go out, after seeing and working with patients day in andy day out, two overweight kids eating ice cream. Honestly, I think it would be hard to turn the doctor voice off - "Man... those kids need to put down the ice cream and go run around outside!" You probably see the health problems lurking in their future.

I get that. I really do. I got a taste of how RARE it is to see a doctor's advice taken when I went to visit my doctor. He was so thrilled that I was dropping weight and exercising. He was as excited as I was when my blood pressure, cholesterol and blood sugars were all treated by diet and exercise alone. He even said, "If only more people were doing what you are doing. You are my poster child for taking charge of your health!" I SHOULDN'T be the rarity.

So... while "I" don't tend to judge overweight people as I "was" morbidly obese and I fight with myself daily (hourly) the demons in my head, I can totally see how I would get jaded as a physician. It doesn't mean you aren't compassionate, but that you know all too well how little you say and advise gets followed.

Roo2
04-17-2013, 05:45 PM
I'm sorry, Roo, but I don't understand a lot of your post. I'm not sure what you googled and I'm not sure why you seem to think my anxiety closet is open. I definitely wasn't thinking anything you said was a personal attack on me or that you were even taking a position. I certainly don't feel insulted.

I think it's great that you lost weight! I don't have any trouble w that. I have lost some myself. :)

I don't think I said anywhere that we shouldn't share our opinions. In fact, I think it's pretty interesting to hear what other people think.

I started the other thread about obesity and who's fault is it...that you referred to in your post...sorry I was not clearer.
I was looking for some information ...when I ran across ...that tag that was on a professional site that dealt with Obesity ....and it got me thinking.
Then I googled that phrase and a ton of stuff came up.
So when I saw you reference that post ....I wondered why you would tie the two threads together....that's all. I felt that you may have thought I was saying something that I was not! So when you said it's the consensus it's the fat person's fault..... So that is where I was coming from.
And I was saying being fat did not impede my personal or professional life. Also that losing weight did not impact it either negatively or positively in that area.
I refuse to use my weight as an excuse that's all I was saying.
Everything is not or was not about be being fat or skinny.
I have lived on both sides of fence....as a naturally skinny kid/adult and an obese adult, I just don't view it as people ganging up on one side or another.
I feel people will always notice things that are different and question things ...dropped my daughter off to high school saw a girl in Pink Polka Dot Pj's and commented to my daughter in the drop off lane....observation is a normal thing...does not mean there is malice attached!
So glad you were not offended. I think having people speak views freely is refreshing and helps us all understand each other more and exposes us to another way of looking at things.
Glad you are having success with your diet, and will look forward to following your progress:hug:
Roo2:carrot::carrot::carrot:

Mountain Mamma
04-17-2013, 06:12 PM
Well, I'm not a maintainer, but I have thoughts on this!

[QUOTE]But from my own experiences and from hearing other people's experiences, you are darned if you do and darned if you don't say or do something to intervene as a parent. My mom was slightly chubby as a teen and her mom said nothing about it. She never forgave her mom for not saying something to maybe make her do something about her weight. So, when I was a teen and gained a little weight, my mom said something to me, it just made me feel worse.


This sums it up perfectly! Yep, darned if you do, darned if you don't!

lin43
04-17-2013, 06:54 PM
I have the "right" to judge people if I want to. Who says that I have to be that "bigger" (no pun intended) person? There is nothing inherently wrong in judging someone else, IMO. If it's something that you want to change, then it is an issue that you can work on, but who says that we have to be nice to everyone in the world?

Well, plenty of people say "we have to be nice" but that's not why I try to be. I try to be nice for many reasons, one of which is that I'd like others to feel the same and be nice to me. To me, it's one of the basic tenets of a civilized society---people doing unto others and all that (the good ole golden rule). Without that, I believe we would be in some "Mad Max" type of world. You obviously have a right to your opinion; I completely disagree with it (and you may not give a hoot--that's fine).

LockItUp
04-17-2013, 07:46 PM
On these boards, I see skinny-hate going on ALL THE TIME. "I'd rather be fat then all bones" "I'd NEVER want to be as skinny as her", and yet that is okay. Say one unpleasant thing about an overweight person and it's like you punched grandma.

And in real life. I think people often make a distinction between being judgmental of an overweight person vs. a thin person. Like being rude about a thin person is fine.

As an overweight person (keeping in mind I was one and admit I've thought all of the following things) have you ever judged a thinner person thinking: "She must have and eating disorder" "Oh I'd never wanna look like that, that's TOO thin" "Skinny B!(*&" "She's wearing revealing clothes, what a SL>>"

Judgement to judgement is no different. But I have found, for me personally, people seem to be much more outward with their judgement of someone they consider thin.

berryblondeboys
04-17-2013, 08:50 PM
As an overweight person (keeping in mind I was one and admit I've thought all of the following things) have you ever judged a thinner person thinking: "She must have and eating disorder" "Oh I'd never wanna look like that, that's TOO thin" "Skinny B!(*&" "She's wearing revealing clothes, what a SL>>"


I don't think I've ever judged a person for being thin. I've been envious, but not judgmental.

I'm in awe I think.. that's probably the word. "Like HOW do you do it with all this food around?"

mariposssa
04-17-2013, 08:52 PM
And in real life. I think people often make a distinction between being judgmental of an overweight person vs. a thin person. Like being rude about a thin person is fine.

As an overweight person (keeping in mind I was one and admit I've thought all of the following things) have you ever judged a thinner person thinking: "She must have and eating disorder" "Oh I'd never wanna look like that, that's TOO thin" "Skinny B!(*&" "She's wearing revealing clothes, what a SL>>"

Judgement to judgement is no different. But I have found, for me personally, people seem to be much more outward with their judgement of someone they consider thin.

The comments directed at thinner people are really no different that the comments directed at overweight, in my mind anyway. Judgment is judgment, period. I think people have a belief that overweight people are more fragile and thinner people are stronger, more hardy...so maybe they feel more free to make comments. Not that it is always true; but because people believe thin is better; and thin people are more confident, stronger in body and mind; and fit because they worked hard for it. It is the opposite of the belief that fat people are fat because they are lazy. Both types of assumptions can be way off base.

paperclippy
04-18-2013, 11:22 AM
This thread is really interesting. I want to provide my opinion on a few points, so I just want to make it clear up front that this is my opinion based on my own experiences and may not be valid for other people. :)

1) Darned if you do, darned if you don't regarding your child's weight issues -- I've already said that I don't think it's ever appropriate or useful to tell a girl that she's fat, and it probably goes for boys too. That doesn't mean that I don't think families should do something to encourage their overweight kids to lose weight. My personal experience is that my obese father told me I was fat starting when I was at a healthy weight, while continually insisting on eating unhealthy food at restaurants many times a week, making fun of people who exercise, and keeping our house full of junk food. The end result was that I felt like I was an ugly fat girl but I didn't have the slightest clue about what I was supposed to do to lose weight. A couple times as a teen my mom tried SlimFast or an exercise DVD, but that was really it. My family is still like this even though since my own weight loss my mom has also changed her lifestyle -- every time I go home to visit, there is a risk of "You've gained some weight! Here have a cake." :rolleyes:

My point is that the way to get your kids to lose weight is NOT to shame them for being fat, or make judgmental comments about their appearance or health or food choices. You can set a good example, make sure that your house is full of healthy options, eat healthy meals together as a family, and keep active as a family.

That said I should also mention that A) I don't have kids yet although I'm expecting twin girls in a couple months, and B) I also can't stand the kind of personal trainers who are the "drill sergeant" and insult you for not working harder. I acknowledge that "drill sergeant" personal trainers are more effective than "cheerleader" personal trainers for some people. For me, that attitude makes me feel like I'll never be any good so I should just give up now.

2) Saef's comment that people's beliefs about weight loss are like religious or political beliefs -- I fully agree. One of the things I think we try to emphasize (but often fail at) on the maintainers forum is that what works for one person may not work for other people. I personally think the same is true of religious and political beliefs. Many people, however, feel that their beliefs are the only "right" answer, and we see the same phenomenon with weight loss advice. This is why some people have decided not to post anymore because they feel attacked for having a different opinion. I have run into similar issues on occasion, usually because I am not a sugar-sensitive person and it bothers me when I see an entire thread about how the only "right" way to lose weight is to cut down on carbs because carbs will mess up your metabolism or whatever the news of the day is. That method doesn't work for me at all. The same thing is true of the divide between people who need an "everything in moderation" approach and people who need to cut out entire categories of foods. These are highly individual decisions but are often presented as "this is what worked for me so it must be the right thing to do." I don't know where I'm going with this. My point is that we have a diversity of people with a diversity of opinions and none of those opinions are invalid.

3) Judging thin people -- I admit I am guilty of this too. When I was in grad school, there was a girl who was in the gym the same time as me every day, and she would get on the stair climber for an hour with the setting high enough that she was dripping sweat all over the place and had to hang on to the railings to stay upright. She was possibly one of the skinniest people I have ever seen in my life (you could see her entire spine and ribs through her shirt), and I admit to often thinking that she might be exercise bulimic or have some kind of eating disorder. I never said anything to her and I generally tried to focus on my own workout, but I do wonder what her story was and what ended up happening to her.


In any case, again, I just kind of rambled and I don't know that I'm really contributing to this conversation at all, or that this even has anything to do with the original post anymore. Take it or leave it. :)

Lecomtes
04-18-2013, 11:24 AM
Great thoughts paperclippy! Thanks for sharing them!

bargoo
04-18-2013, 12:29 PM
Jessica, good points. There are over 169 thousand 3fc's and over 169 thousand opinions. We are all entitled to our own opinions and I think it is a waste of my time and energy to get upset at someone else's opinion.

memememe76
04-25-2013, 10:56 PM
Now that I'm on the "thin" side and people go on and on about how "thin" I am, I am always surprised when people who've been on both sides of the scale actually believe that "thin insults" are as bad as the "fat insults" that were once thrown their ways. I'm like, really? Sure, it's annoying, but really--IT DOES NOT COMPARE.

Sum38
04-26-2013, 09:22 AM
I don't know if this is judging or having thoughts out of the knowledge I have acquired; I was at the gym and I was lifting those horrid weights (ya; I hate lifting, but I am starting to love the results :crazy:)...anycase this cute late teens/ early 20's couple was working out. He was teaching her about different machines etc. They had a routine they were following. -- She was a little bit on a softer side what came to her physique.

I overheard her saying "oh, this was a lot of work, I bet I burned a ton of calories"

I wanted to step in and say; "Honey, you burned maybe 200-300 cal, please don't give yourself a free pass at the Mexican restaurant tonight" But of course I did not.

Was I judging? Perhaps.... but I know myself, I used to use that "excuse" all the time to over eat; "BUT I worked out".

krampus
04-26-2013, 11:01 AM
I figured out yesterday that I can sometimes in a moment of weakness jealously judge anyone who is thinner/lower body fat than me who can't lift as much as I can. As in "it's not faaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaair"

TurboMammoth
04-26-2013, 11:55 AM
Now that I'm on the "thin" side and people go on and on about how "thin" I am, I am always surprised when people who've been on both sides of the scale actually believe that "thin insults" are as bad as the "fat insults" that were once thrown their ways. I'm like, really? Sure, it's annoying, but really--IT DOES NOT COMPARE.

Just my humble opinion here, but I don't think we can ''measure'' how much or not having the ''fat insults'' VS the ''thin insults'' hurting someone. But I does agree that it does not compare ; fat insults hurts what a person is at the specific moment VS thin insults hurts, for someone who lost weight and still got judgmental things throw her/his way, all the efforts the person had to put out to work it's way through a weight loss process.

This is probably why skinny hating annoys/hurts a lot :(

neurodoc
04-26-2013, 11:28 PM
I also don't think that judgmental thoughts about thin women carry the same baggage. The tone is rarely pitying or scornful (as it is for obesity), it is usually schadenfreude (pleasure at seeing someone else having misfortune) tinged with jealousy.

I dropped back in to say that several suggestions given in this thread have helped me combat my judgmental thinking, especially the one about creating more of a "backstory" for the overweight people I see eating junk food or wearing unflattering clothes. So, thanks everyone - all 60 of your posts (and counting). Wow.

Roo2
04-26-2013, 11:33 PM
I have a hard time believing people feel that when someone is being insulted it matters whether they are Fat or Skinny!
My teenage daughter had a girl walk up to her in the hall and call her Anorexic,my daughter told her no my weight is considered normal for my height and size, but you are Overweight for your height and size! The girl let out Hmmm like she could not believe what my daughter said ...and my DD said it in front of a guy friend too! So my daughter was being bullied but it is less hurtful for a random stranger at school to call her Anorexic !

I think maybe we all need to quit coming from our own history and acknowledge ...that it is quite acceptable in our society to do Skinny Bashing!
On the view one of the talk show host Joy Behar. Likes to refer to Skinny B...ch
Quite often as an insult!,if someone was to replace that with Fat B....ch. the sponsors and viewing office would be outraged!
There are people who are naturally thin ...so is it alright for them to be targeted?
I have been called Skinny in a derogatory way....never did someone to my face call me fat in such a manner?

I do not have thin skin ...but what is sauce for the Goose is sauce for the Ganter! All remarks can cause body image disturbances...there are tons of people in treatment for body image disturbances.
Bullies come in all shapes and sizes IMO.
Roo2
Oh that girl has not approached my daughter again ..calling her Anorexic!
My daughter gave it right back to her which apparently the girl did not expect!

IanG
04-26-2013, 11:46 PM
I just. do. not. care. It took me long enough to care about myself. Let alone strangers.

And I can't be in the minority else the US would have universal health care.

JayEll
04-27-2013, 07:29 AM
A million thoughts go through your mind every day. Some may be useful, a lot are just junk--like having a radio on in the background. The important thing is to prevent yourself from jumping into action based on these judgmental thoughts--as though you are only a reflex reacting to what goes through your mind.

When I had lost 50 pounds, I was in line at the pet food store. The store was owned by an obese woman. In the course of her conversation with another customer, weight loss came up. The store owner said that she had lost over 100 pounds twice, but then had regained.

Me in my wonderful new relatively thin body wanted to tell her to "keep trying" and "not give up" and surely she could lose the weight and keep it off. But I didn't.

Now it is years later, and those 50 pounds I lost? They are back again. I truly believed I would never, ever, regain that weight. I have thought of myself as a failure, as a weakling. How could I "let" this happen?

Well folks, it happens, and sometimes it happens no matter how hard you think you are trying. I now believe that if someone restricts too long, and too much, that the body begins to push back.

I'm just glad I didn't say anything to the obese woman in the pet food store.

saef
04-27-2013, 08:14 AM
I think maybe we all need to quit coming from our own history and acknowledge ...that it is quite acceptable in our society to do Skinny Bashing!
On the view one of the talk show host Joy Behar. Likes to refer to Skinny B...ch
Quite often as an insult!,if someone was to replace that with Fat B....ch. the sponsors and viewing office would be outraged!


Roo2, do you see my profile stats, to the left of this post? Where I call myself "Midsize B...ch"? That's me, playing with the term and the book titled "Skinny B...ch" that came out a few years back, and also playing with "Fat B...ch," which I was called once, really loudly, in the middle of a college literature class by a male student who was arguing with me about a book under discussion. (Oh, how that hurt at the time, because the teacher just sat back & watched, and said nothing, which I think is totally wrong. Teachers should make classrooms a safe space, if nothing else.) I thought of "midsize sedan" in car commercials and decided that was my goal, to be a "Midsize B...ch." Healthy, moderate and not drawing down insults from both halves of the population.

But seriously, folks, something in our society hates the extremes of fat and skinny and is all over them, using them as a moral judgment on the other half and as the prime indicator of a woman's worth. I still think the terms are a shorthand for a whole pile of other associations regarding self-control, social adeptness, class distinctions, etc.

lin43
04-27-2013, 03:05 PM
. . . "Fat B...ch," which I was called once, really loudly, in the middle of a college literature class by a male student who was arguing with me about a book under discussion. (Oh, how that hurt at the time, because the teacher just sat back & watched, and said nothing, which I think is totally wrong. Teachers should make classrooms a safe space, if nothing else.)

As a teacher, I am stunned by this. I cannot imagine someone in one of my classes actually saying this to another student. And, almost as bad, I cannot imagine the teacher doing nothing!! What??? I would have dismissed that student from class, reported his behavior to my Chair/the Dean, and not allowed him to enter the class again until he had apologized to the person whom he insulted and the entire class for being so disruptive. That teacher must have been like a deer in headlights. Once in a blue moon someone has said something inappropriate in class (not insulting another person--just inappropriate), and if I think it's uncharacteristic of the student, I might allow it to pass simply to avoid calling more attention to it. However, I would NEVER allow what you described. Saef, it's teachers like that, that give so many in the profession a bad name; sorry that that happened to you.

carpediem
05-01-2013, 05:18 AM
My experience is that it doesn't matter if you are overweight or thin, but people tend to be more judgemental when their diet and exercise seem effortless to maintain. You are "on the zone", you feel like your diet is a lifestyle change, everything is smooth and you can continue what you are doing without excessive effort. So you see other people struggling and probably think: come on, I can do it, you are just making excuses and being lazy. But as maintainers and those who have been at this for a while know, there will probably come a time when things will not seem that easy, your circumstances will change and then what it used to work it won't work anymore so you will probably start to feel more empathy for them.

I think it is the same when you want to help someone to make better choices and that person is not ready to change. You try to project what it's working for you, probably out of love, but it will not work until that person is ready to make the change. You will probably feel frustrated because you just want to help them and I think judging goes along the same lines but in a negative way.

Judging or trying to help others comes from a conflict you have in your head between what is happening to you and what is happening to other people. It is probably better to disengage your own experience from that kind of thoughts and just be there when someone asks you for help.

pageta
05-01-2013, 12:33 PM
I find that the more I'm focused on my weight, the more I tend judge others or at least notice their weight. It's like thinking about buying a red car and as you look around, you see red cars everywhere. We notice what we are paying attention to, and if we are watching our weight, we tend to notice other's weight as well.

I have never been obese, just overweight. And while I didn't get a lot of comments during the year or so I was down in the middle of the correct weight range (I'm now slightly back into the overweight range), I got way more comments about my weight than I ever did in all the years I was fat.

Weight loss is so much more than numbers on a scale. When I was at my lowest, I felt like I looked the same way I did at my highest. My flaws were the same, the places where the fat accumulated were the same. I felt good, but it was hard to justify all the work to stay that way just for how I felt. Now that I've gained some of what I lost back, I have a somewhat different perspective. How I look simply isn't motivation enough for me to go to all that work to be thin. It was a lot of work, and I did a lot of judging.

So my ongoing issues is reframing all of that so I get back into the healthy range again (I am less than 10 pounds away from it so it is oh so close). But if I am going to do it, I don't want to be so wrapped up about it. It was a strange new world, and I am not sure where I fit into it yet. I am sure part of my obsession with others weights (especially those who were skinny) was trying to fit into that world. I still hope I will figure it out.

But to the OP, I so do feel your pain. I totally understand the obsession and the loathing of it.

Lecomtes
05-01-2013, 01:06 PM
But seriously, folks, something in our society hates the extremes of fat and skinny and is all over them, using them as a moral judgment on the other half and as the prime indicator of a woman's worth. I still think the terms are a shorthand for a whole pile of other associations regarding self-control, social adeptness, class distinctions, etc.

^THIS. So, what can I do about it as an individual? What can we do about it, as people who have felt the sting of judgement? This thread has inspired me to put conscious effort into seeing the light in all people, and even reaching out more to compliment and connect with them.
It has also helped me to identify who I tend to reflect my insecurities onto. While I would tend to agree with a previous commenter that commentating on a heavy persons weight carries harsher implications than commenting on the thin, here is the thing...does it matter? Either way, such judgments are two sides of the same coin. When the overweight berate the thin as being "less than" or anorexic or whatever AND when the thin are cruel to the overweight...they promote duality...they diminish the opportunity for a mutually supportive environment...they promote the false idea that worth is external. Lasting influence is achieved with the mind, with kindness, with compassion, with intelligence...not with curves OR ab definition. :)

rubidoux
05-01-2013, 01:42 PM
^THIS. So, what can I do about it as an individual? What can we do about it, as people who have felt the sting of judgement? This thread has inspired me to put conscious effort into seeing the light in all people, and even reaching out more to compliment and connect with them.
It has also helped me to identify who I tend to reflect my insecurities onto. While I would tend to agree with a previous commenter that commentating on a heavy persons weight carries harsher implications than commenting on the thin, here is the thing...does it matter? Either way, such judgments are two sides of the same coin. When the overweight berate the thin as being "less than" or anorexic or whatever AND when the thin are cruel to the overweight...they promote duality...they diminish the opportunity for a mutually supportive environment...they promote the false idea that worth is external. Lasting influence is achieved with the mind, with kindness, with compassion, with intelligence...not with curves OR ab definition. :)

ITA and I think we would all be happier if we put in the effort to be compassionate and reaching out.

One thing that I am so amazed at about the whole fat discrimination thing is that so much of it has to be coming from other fat people -- according to the folks who keep the records 2/3 of us are at unhealthily high bmi's right? It has always made a certain amount of sense to me that white people who are in the majority (I'm in the U.S.) could discriminate against and set up a society where black people, who are a minority, are treated as lesser. But the numbers are completely reversed with fat people. So we are so self-loathing bc of our fat that we cannot even manage to have compassion and empathy for ourselves and people in our situation. I do thinking a little more self-love and a little more loving-our-brother would go a long way.

ikesgirl80
05-02-2013, 07:44 PM
I actually had this conversation with a friend today. I commented how most people at our work are trying to lose, and a couple have had WLS. With the exception of 1 person (who had WLS), I am the only person who has lost (and so far maintained) weight. I knew the way I was saying it sounded judgemental, but it was more of trying to analyze their thinking without sitting down and having a conversation with them (as most people are not as open about weight as I am).

I know how hard it is. I know how impossible it is when you are not ready to commit. I know how easy it is when your head is in it. I know how sh*tty it feels to be judged, but I was sitting there doing it. And I admit, the words sounded down right mean, and I felt bad about it, but had no other words that expressed what I was thinking and feeling about myself.

The one thing I'm terrified of is regaining, and by trying to analyze other's behaviors, I am trying to line up "prevention" techniques. Especially since this is the first time in my life I've taken weight loss seriously.

I guess what I am saying is we all have those thoughts. I just try to use them to help me in my journey. And I'm sorry if I ever sound like an @ss (in RL or here!).

energie
05-06-2013, 07:54 AM
OP, why would you think to possibly even speak to 2 children(let alone anyone)that way? What grown person does that? Psych wise something isnt rite with that.

ICUwishing
05-06-2013, 12:16 PM
Moderator, can we get the post above mine deleted? Clearly, the poster never bothered to read the thread, or to "get" the concept of things thought being considerably different from things said.

energie
05-06-2013, 12:31 PM
I have read the thread and I asked the op a question. People have thoughts but to be on the verge of being rude to random children(or anyone), isnt normal. I think there is much more going on internally inside the op.They may also be projecting.

Ija
05-07-2013, 12:55 PM
OP, why would you think to possibly even speak to 2 children(let alone anyone)that way? What grown person does that? Psych wise something isnt rite with that.

Wow, I find this to be really judgmental, much more so than what the OP wrote. She was just being honest about thoughts she was struggling with, and wondered if anyone else ever felt the same. Quite a few people admitted they did too.

ASaladandaDream
05-07-2013, 03:14 PM
Not a maintainer, but I'd like to add my $.02.

I appreciate neurodoc's honesty and agree that some people in this thread have been harsh or overly critical of her, proving that we ALL can be judgmental.

We all judge. I have mean thoughts, about people skinny and fat. For example, my mother who is much shorter than me and weighs more. I have had rude thoughts about her eating fast food or sugary sweets b/c she doesn't seem to care to eat healthy or lose weight. I've had mean thoughts about girls who are too skinny along the lines of , "jeez, I'd rather be fat than look like that." "Skinny-bashing" is no better than "fat-bashing."

These thoughts are fleeting. I feel guilty for them sometimes, and usually they are gone as quickly as they've come.

I am glad that you decided not to say anything to those little girls. Just because we have these thoughts, doesn't mean we should voice them. Coming from a stranger, even if they are coming from a good place, will likely offend someone. I understand that you feel, "If I can do it, so can you!" You hope that they will use your advice and help as motivation, and I respect that. I'm sure someone would appreciate, but some would not. I sure wouldn't.

No one is perfect. We all have flaws. A lot of people believe being fat is a "flaw" (I don't necessarily consider it a flaw, but I won't get into that). And worst of all it a visible flaw, that we can't hide, which in some ways is unfair.

I could tell people with crooked or yellow teeth to get braces and get their teeth whitened, "because I did it!"

Skinny people who have never been fat may judge me and want to tell me to do something about my weight. I could feel the same way about people who don't do well in school. I am, and always have been, pretty much a straight A student. I could judge classmates when I see them at parties, because they "should be studying." "I got the highest grade on the last exam, why can't you?"

Someone who is a smoker, could judge someone for being fat. Someone who is fat, can judge someone for being an alcoholic. An alcoholic can judge someone for being addicted to prescription pills.

No one is perfect, and something that seems easy to you may not be so easy to another. That's life. I try to keep this in mind when I find myself having judgmental thoughts. As many have said, we never know someone's life story or why they are the way they are so it's not our place to speak up and pass judgment.

ASaladandaDream
05-07-2013, 03:35 PM
[B]mariposssa/B] i love your entire post!