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Old 10-19-2011, 05:03 AM   #1  
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Default this is really starting to get to me....

ok so I am getting really frustrated/upset/ generally emotional because of all of the current focus on obesity/weight loss in the media at the moment.

I understand that you need to raise awarness to get people to make positive changes to their lifestyles, the problem that I have is that at the moment I feel as if all of the media attention is on attacking and criticising people who are overweight/obese. Then people start commenting on online articles in newspapers and magazines and the old "its easy, eat less move more. stop with all the stupid excuses" starts up and I just feel like throwing the towel in the air and saying f*ck it! I give up! The people that are making these comments have probably never in their life dealt with any form of health problem that was literally jumping up and slapping them in the face every time that they pick up a news paper or read a magazine let alone walking out their own front door. Is it of my own making?? YES!!! I know that it is! I own a mirror! I know what I look like! and even worse I know how i feel about myself!

I suppose I just want to be left alone. I'm sick of people treating me with contempt because they are being trained by media, that because I'm fat I'm less of a human being. Or because I'm fat I am only to be acknowledged to be criticized or made to feel bad about myself. Worse I am sick to death of having people use me as an example of what is apparently the most evil, vile thing in the world. Thats right I'm fat. Just imagin if we could spend as much time and energy and focus on making sure that homeless men, women and children have somewhere to sleep at night!!!!


Sorry just had to rant...
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Old 10-19-2011, 07:42 AM   #2  
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I've said it many times and it's sadly true, the only 'acceptable' form of bigotry/prejudice is against the fat people in the world. And... because it's seen as a choice.

And it is a choice, but it is so much more complicated than that - it's not like choosing between green curtains or blue. But yes, being fat in today's world, even though we are the fattest generation ever is a difficult time as the hatred is building.
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Old 10-19-2011, 07:51 AM   #3  
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You know, this is one of the things I struggle with—especially in terms with my own weight loss. I often wonder if I'm losing weight because that's what society wants me to do, or if I'm actually losing weight because I want to.

I also wonder about my own reasons for becoming a teacher. I love it, but did I go down this path because it's a traditionally female profession or did I do it out of my own choice?

It's amazing how much society can have influence over us, and I'm often questioning whether or not I made a choice or if society has made that choice for me.

One thing is certain though, that the shaming of obese people is downright wrong and isn't going to change anything. It might even be hurting our efforts to "combat obesity." Or here's a strange thought—the media should stop saying "obesity" and just say "obese people" because that's what they're really against at this point. Try it! Put "obese people" instead of "obesity" in any article that talks about "fighting" it and you'll see how sick this whole thing has become.

Regardless, shaming fat folks isn't going to suddenly make them thin. The shame is what got me even fatter. It was only when I really came to love myself and I was happy that I began to lose weight.

I still sometimes wonder if I'm a hypocrite though. I was—and still am—actively against size discrimination, yet here I am reducing my own weight and fitting in with the "normal" people.
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Old 10-19-2011, 08:33 AM   #4  
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I'm actively against discrimination against people with disabilities, but that doesn't mean I don't wish I wasn't disabled. It's weird and it's complex for both subjects, which is not remotely the same as being a hypocrite. Indeed, hypocrites tend to be the people who refuse to see the complexity of something and try to over-simplify it.

I would respectfully disagree that discrimination against fat people is the only remaining acceptable form of bigotry. Discrimination against people with disabilities is still largely acceptable, far more so than people think (which is one of the reasons why the shaming of people with disabilities is still so prevalent), and the media are routinely absolutely vile about us. Homophobia is still institutionalised in many religions, cultures and even entire countries. Transphobia tends to be even worse. Sexism hasn't exactly vanished, and again, in some countries it is thoroughly the norm. Racism remains a major problem. Speaking as a queer disabled ethnically-Jewish atheist woman who has just spent a number of years being overweight, living in one of the most liberal countries in the world, I would say that the discrimination I face due to being disabled outweighs all of the others put together several times over. And by discrimination I am including outright hatred. I'm one of the relatively lucky ones; far too many people are beaten and even murdered for being disabled, by strangers and by their families. I really do understand where people are coming from here, but I'd appreciate it if they could stop referring to bigotry against fat people as the only acceptable form of bigotry left, because it's simply untrue and I'm finding it quite distressing.

Going back to the original topic, yes, the media tend to be really horrible on this matter, and we've had a spate of similar reports in the UK as well. The shame culture is outrageous, and you never see discussion of how difficult it is to lose weight and what methods are actually useful. And then the tabloids and magazines hop in with madly unrealistic weight loss stories, where they are always looking for someone to point at and mock, either the woman in the story for being a psychological wreck, or other people for not losing as much weight as her. It's almost always a "her". Sexism combines so nicely with other forms of bigotry.
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Old 10-19-2011, 09:00 AM   #5  
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My advice is to turn off the TV, put down the newspaper, and do something. I rarely watch TV or read the paper, so I guess I'm pretty unaware of current events. I didn't even realize that fat is being bashed more now than it ever was. Ignorance is bliss!
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Old 10-19-2011, 09:03 AM   #6  
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Sorry, I don't agree. The simple fact is that it is not the media - it is you yourself - that makes you feel this way. People will always say negative things, and you will only get offended when you know that they are true.
The fact of the matter is that it IS easy. Losing weight is not rocket science. Eat better, exercize. That's it. No physics degree required.
And yes, this is coming from someone who needs to lose weight and has been called fat by friends and strangers alike. I think American society needs to be a little less sensitive. The fact of the matter is that being fat is UNHEALTHY. Do you disgaree with this?
In fact, I find that the more negative comments I hear, the more I am motivated, because I know that I CAN do better and be the best that I can be. It is all in my hands!!! And if you don't like what's on the TV.. it's easy as pie.. turn it off.
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Old 10-19-2011, 09:11 AM   #7  
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I think everyone takes it differently. I hope you feel better for letting the vent out though.

In my life?

I don't watch TV or engage in too much media consumption. That helps.

The people I hang with in my community aren't bashing kinds of people. That helps.

My own attitude is that I don't have to pick up someone else's baggage just because they fling it toward me.

The few and far between times I get some random stranger commenting, I am more apt to think "Boy, that's a weird person to be saying things like that to complete strangers!" than "OMG! That stranger is right. I am horrible!"

Of course, I am obese. I did NOT choose this. I don't see that I eat much differently than other people. This amazes my mother. I've heard her say often "But you eat like I do!"

But not everyone gets that not all fatness is from gluttony. Some of it is from health issues and NO it isn't as simple as eat less and move more all the time.

Even for people without extra health issues, eat less and move more is easy to take in your head, but it isn't easy to execute.

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Old 10-19-2011, 11:02 AM   #8  
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Originally Posted by larussa89 View Post
People will always say negative things, and you will only get offended when you know that they are true.
Disagree. You get told your whole life that purple is the ugliest color in the world, then purple starts to look like the ugliest color in the whole world. Unlearning that can be very difficult.

Maybe you put a lot of effort into something, and someone comes along and calls it stupid. That's still crushing, regardless of how much you liked your artwork.

The world affects us. To a degree we have a control over how we react back, but a base emotion rising is very natural.

I don't think the solution is "You're wrong for feeling angry and annoyed." Because that would just make me feel more angry and annoyed.

I think it's more like "You're angry and annoyed... why are you angry and annoyed... and what can you do about it, if anything?"

The fact of the matter is that it IS easy. Losing weight is not rocket science. Eat better, exercize. That's it. No physics degree required.
Simple does not mean easy. If it were EASY to lose weight, I wouldn't have weighed in at 331 pounds. If it were EASY to lose weight, I wouldn't need WW or 3FC.

The world lifting its nose up at the obese and saying "It's so SIMPLE! Why'd you even get fat in the first place?!" does. not. help. It's so glib. As if that sudden "insight" would cure a person of all their fat.


The "obesity epidemic" stories that get tossed around the media are just another hot news topic. It has been for years.

I don't know that it bothers me so much in general, except for the fact that they've been spouting the same figures and numbers and spewing out the same crappy advice about it as they have since they started reporting it.

"2/3 Americans are overweight. 1/3 are obese. What's to blame for America's expanding waistline? Some experts say it's the increasingly sedentary lifestyle that we're leading. Some say it's the convenient, cheap, high calorie foods. One thing's for sure, something needs to be done or by the year 20xx we'll all be tubs of lard!"

Gee, thanks, media. Is the sky blue, too? I've always wondered...perhaps if you could do a special report sometime...

I try to look at it as I do Politics. Politics are boring to me. So I skip the stories that have to do with politicians or politics. Nothing will change with politics, and so no story is going to blow my mind about it.

Obesity stories are the same. They don't offer me any new information, so I don't read them. (The exception are the individual weight loss stories, but they tend to be filled with specific truths. Such as HOW a person got to the point where they wanted to lose... how they lost it... how they're maintaining... and some of the time those people end up saying something like "It's not anything like the media portrays it to be.")

When it got to be that I recognized those stories were not a fount of information, but were rather simply a source of aggravation to me I started to skip over them.

I suppose my only problem is that those stories may reinforce those who think it IS easy, so they can nod along to it and say "See? The media says it's easy. Those fat people should just do what these articles say."

Can't do anything about that, though.

Last edited by Lovely; 10-19-2011 at 11:27 AM.
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Old 10-19-2011, 11:20 AM   #9  
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I have to disagree with the poster who said it is THAT easy. It isn't. If it was, then there would be barely any fat people. No one 100% chooses to be limited physically, socially, emotionally the way that being fat can limit you. In human behavior for most things, there is a huge black hole between knowing what to do and how to do it, and doing it. That's just human nature. Not just related to weight issues. Figuring out that black hole and how to overcome it permanently, is what makes this journey so challenging.

At the OP, I too hope your rant helped. My suggestion to you will be to try to take your focus off what the media is saying, and try to focus on what you want for yourself. Sometimes I see a segment on the news or an article in the newspaper that I know is not going to be beneficial to my psyche to see, and I change channels or don't read that article. Don't let the media or outside forces or whatever hold you or your behaviour to ransome. Your weight is your business alone, no one elses. If you're going to quit, quit for yourself not because you've been bullied into it. If you're continuing on, as I hope you do (because 6kg/~7lbs so far is a really good accomplishment), do it for yourself. That's the only way it'll stick. Do it because you deserve to achieve your goals. If people want to hate on you because of your weight, that's their problem, don't let it bother you. Unfortunately for them, their awful, simple, judgmental personalities might be permanent, your issues with your weight, on the otherhand, don't have to be, whenever you're ready to make a change.

It's difficult when you feel judged by everyone, but people will always judge. If it's not your weight, it will be something else. You will always be "too" something for someone and that something will always be your fault and as a result of something else you're not doing right. The thing to do is to first love and accept yourself (easier said than done) and I suppose develop as thick skin and avoid hate-filled situations. Oh and try not to join the judgmental cycle against other looked-down-upon groups.
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Old 10-19-2011, 11:27 AM   #10  
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I've always encouraged the media because I believe it could help other generations and possibly ours. I don't take it as a personal attack and I don't think anyone else should.

I understand your need to vent but don't take it personal. Keep going on your journey and do the best you can!
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Old 10-19-2011, 11:30 AM   #11  
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larussa89 -

If it is as easy as you claim then why are you on this site? This site is designed for support and tips for those who find it hard to lose and maintain the weight loss. Also, wouldn't you already be 120lb rather than trying to get there?

I'm not saying that you should not be welcomed on 3FC. I think everyone should be, whether they have 5lb to lose or 500lb, I'm just saying that weight loss is difficult for everyone, not just those who weigh over 165lb.
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Old 10-19-2011, 12:03 PM   #12  
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don't ever look at comments on online news sources. They are always crazy and unbelievably negative. It doesn't matter what the subject matter is.
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Old 10-19-2011, 12:24 PM   #13  
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I agree with the majority of you. It definetely is not easy. Especially when from a early age you were not taught about nurtition and you never knew about how to live a healthy lifestyle because you have never lived a healthy lifestyle. As far as now when I have chronic ankle and foot pain that I've had way before I was heavy it makes it kind of hard to move more so that the weight can come off easier and faster. Lets not forgot all the emotionally issues people (and myself) have from their weight or from trama, or family isues that needs to be resolved. There are so many things that make people over eat or eat for the wrong reasons and it's just not that simple!
Like someone above me said, "if it were that simple, we would all be skinny and not struggling trying to lose weight".

You just try your hardest, except yourself for who you are, love yourself for who you are, and continue to try and better yourself. We can do this guys!!
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Old 10-19-2011, 12:29 PM   #14  
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i do not think that i would call the current focus on obesity as "bigotry". however, i do think that obesity is a sensitive issue and it's a personal choice to begin the hard road of weight loss.

having spent time in other countries, i can see that obesity has become an epidemic in the united states. so much of our food is really fatty, and the cheaper it is, the more unhealthy it seems to be. as a teacher, i appreciate the increased awareness that obesity can lead to other maladies such as diabetes, heart problems and joint issues. -- i have members of my family who suffer from all these things.

i understand that it feels like people who are obese are getting picked on, but the issue isn't the individuals, its the topic itself and bringing awareness and possibly creating better eating habits within our society.
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Old 10-19-2011, 12:45 PM   #15  
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One thing that bothers me about the whole thing is the flat-out completely bad science that gets thrown around in these types of articles.

Usually those articles and reports are full of just plain incorrect statements. The science of diet, nutrition, endocrinology and physiology related to obesity is immensely complex with a lot of still-unanswered questions - and it gets muddled up by 'experts' who are just repeated what they 'learned' in medical school or what they were told by the government without having any legitimate empirical evidence of their claims. This is how 'mythical facts' are born, and it's the death of evidence-based medicine.

So not only are they hatefully inciting moral panic, they're doing it while completely failing at science.

A good article: http://ije.oxfordjournals.org/content/35/1/55.full
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