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Self-perception vs. Other-perception

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Old 01-07-2010, 03:47 PM   #1
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Exclamation Self-perception vs. Other-perception

I am a plus size woman. I've always seen myself as very fat, although when I look at another woman who wears exactly the same size as I do (she could even be wearing my clothes) I see her as only plump. For example, recently I loaned my coat to a woman. I was surprised at how tightly it fit her, whereas it fits me with much more room to spare. Her other clothing sizes were slightly larger than mine as well, but she didn't look "fat" to me. Yet I've been looking in the mirror and seeing a massive blob ever since the onset of puberty, and long before I actually was clinically obese.

Lately I've been reading books on fat acceptance. "Fat!So?" for one, and "Self Esteem Comes In All Sizes."

And maybe because these ideas are running loose in my head, I had a random thought on the way home tonight. When am I most likely to be put down and called "fat" by another person? I know when. It's not when my size, or diets, or anything remotely connected to weight is being discussed. No, there is really only one time the word "fat" ever takes aim at me, from someone else's mouth.

It's when that person disapproves of the opinion I just expressed. "Ahhh, shaddup, ya fat ole cow."

To myself I am fat all the time. To others I am fat only when I say something they don't like. Weird, isn't it?
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Old 01-08-2010, 01:46 PM   #2
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I think we always judge ourselves much harsher than other people do. The way you looked at that women is probably the same way she sees you. We are our own worst critic. It's taken me awhile to realize that, but I'm sure of it. Especially now when I look at pictures of me at 180 lbs, I looked good in my size 10/12 pants. Heck, I looked great. But I clearly remember thinking how big my thighs were, how jiggly my belly was, & how my arms looked terrible in tank tops and how I wouldn't even wear a bathing suit. Now, at 220 lbs, I wish I could beat some sense into my old self just so I could have enjoyed my body for once in my life, you know?

As for others perception of you, re: "fat ole cow" I wish I had some insight. In my opinion, there shouldn't be anytime that anyone should be called that. Or any name for that matter. It's hurtful and shallow. And if it did hurt your feelings, sometimes the best thing we can do is speak up. Now that I'm a little older, I'm a firm believer in telling someone when my feelings are hurt and I say it just like that "hey, that really hurt my feelings". And if that person doesn't respect how you feel, perhaps it's not someone who's perception you should be worried about to begin with?

I've rambled but I hope this helps. I also hope it makes sense
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