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Posts tagged ‘stereotypes’

Weighty Topics

health food

 

I am currently down 22 pounds from when I got married, about 15 months ago.

A huge majority of that has been lost over the last 3 months.

You know, when I started dating Aussie, I wouldn’t let him know how much I weighed. In fact, I wouldn’t tell him until maybe a year ago. Somewhere in my head, I had decided that if he knew how much I weighed, he’d think I was fat and not be interested anymore.

We went on a road trip yesterday, and were able to talk a lot. It’s one of the reasons I love road trips with him. I read an article about how “thigh gap” is the coveted thing among teen age girls. And, how so many are not able to attain it, no matter how little they weigh. I told him, I wished I could tell all teenagers, and many adults, it takes all kinds of kinds. Whatever you look like? Odds are good there is someone out there who is attracted to that. Aussie was talking about how guys don’t feel as much pressure to be thin, they don’t keep their weight a secret, but, there is pressure to find the right body type girl. If you don’t, then there must be something wrong with you. If a guy likes a chubby girl, or if that is his type, he is ridiculed. He might date her anyway,but, makes sure to tell his friends that you know, she’s really great. Except for maybe that weight thing. I thought it was interesting. Luckily for us, we met in our late twenties and a bit of the pressure was off. He was free to date a chubby chick, I was free to date a computer geek and we are happy and our friends are happy for us.

I wish weight was not such a taboo subject. I was asked once when the baby was due. i wasn’t pregnant. I remember crying and wanting Aussie to tell me he liked me, fat and all. And, he could not do it. Because you are not allowed to ever acknowledge someone is fat. He basically kept saying I had a great personality and was beautiful, so he loved me. Like, fat girls can’t be beautiful? And, it used to drive me insane when he’d argue with me when I said I was fat/needed to lose weight. I would think to myself “I want to zip line with our son. I am too fat to do so, therefor, I need to lose weight.” and he’d insist I didn’t. We talked about that yesterday, he said that of course he said that, that is what boys are supposed to say. If you say anything else, the woman will be hurt and upset, and either starve herself or become suicidal, so, you never say that. All girls are beautiful and thin. Both of those “issues” with us have long since been resolved. He doesn’t go around going “wow, you look super fat today baby.” but, he doesn’t argue with me about it anymore either. And, I’m good with that.

I thought it was incredibly interesting back when I was dating, before Aussie. I did a lot of online dating. It was VERY common to see a man with a “no fatties” disclaimer on his page. So, I never wrote to those guys. But, quite often they wrote to me.  I reminded them, they weren’t interested in me. I was fat. And, they always said “Well, I didn’t mean you!” I had full length pictures up. I asked what they meant, and it usually was something like

  • I just didn’t want somebody really fat, like, over 200 pounds. (Which I was)
  • I just didn’t want somebody lazy, you don’t sound lazy.
  • I just wanted somebody really pretty, I didn’t care about the weight, and you are really pretty.

And, almost as often as I saw “no fatties” I saw “no girls over 130 pounds” and I think to myself now, so many women are so secretive about their weight, that I don’t even think guys know what they are looking for. Because I dated a lot of “no over 130” guys too.

I read an interesting article recently, about how women don’t know what they want. For a quick summary, almost exclusively, women say they want a tall man. Why? I’m 5’3″. I don’t need a 6′ tall man to be bigger than me.  Basically, what women really wanted, was a man with confidence, a man who would sweep them off their feet, a man who made them feel small and petite, a man who made them feel protected. Shorter men, like a 5’5″ one, who is still taller than me, but, has been told for years he isn’t “tall enough” is not going to be as confident, he isn’t going to feel as much like he is a big protector, so, he’s less likely to act like one, which in turn, turns women off, which ruins his confidence even more, and on and on it goes.

So, what is really behind this “no fat chicks” attitude men have? Oh, I’m sure many guys aren’t interested purely on looks, and that’s fine. But, the fat “stereotype” I think is the problem. Well, if you are fat, then obviously you don’t do anything except sit around and watch tv and eat. It means you are lazy, with no self control, and are just going to continue to balloon until you need rolled out of the house. And, who want that? I think, often when people say no fatties, what they mean is, I want somebody confident. I want somebody pretty. I want somebody who will hike in the woods with me. I want somebody who will swim off my boat. I want somebody I can wrestle on the sofa with over the remote. If we need one more person for the baseball game, I’d like her to join in. I don’t want to spend my weekend watching a lifetime movie marathon. I like salads! And,all those desires translate into “I only want a skinny partner.” Even though, many people don’t actually care.

I once heard a conversation, where people were arguing over fat people. One guy said it was just a lack of will-power. A woman told about her best friend, who had thyroid issues, now is super overweight, and just can’t lose the weight. He retorted with “well, it’s still will power. If she just ate a little healthier, and walked to the mailbox instead of driving, she’d still be fat, but not as fat!” Again, with the stereotypes. Unless you know somebody, you don’t know what they do, or go through. I remember weighing 260 and being yelled at and ridiculed. I now weigh 225.  I’m still fat. I do Zumba for 11 hours every week. I rarely drink soda. I count calories, and park at the end of the parking lot and get in at least 10,000 steps a day. A little here, and a little there, and a little at a time, and I’ve lost weight. But, to someone who doesn’t know me, who saw me being wheeled around the store in a wheelchair last week due to a broken foot, they might think the same thing, that if I just tried I wouldn’t be so heavy.

Like I told Aussie yesterday, I need to lose weight, because my personality doesn’t work with my size. I like adventure, I crave adrenaline rushes. I want to try the new roller coaster, and I want to zip line, and I want to drive the tiny sports car, without the seat pushed back for my tummy to fit, I want to sit next to my son, who isn’t getting any smaller, on the carnival ride, I want to know I’ll fit anywhere I want to be. I want to hike and walk and go through caves with itty bitty openings between the rocks. I fly every few months, I don’t want to wonder if the seatbelt will fit.

Yes, I am currently fat. But, it is a description, same as short, and dark haired and blue eyed and pretty. A description, not an insult. And, I’m not always going to be fat. And, since I said i wished it wasn’t always so taboo…I’ll start. I weigh 225. I’m 5’3″. Today, I cried in the dressing room because I slid on a pair of size 16 jeans for the first time in about 5 years, after working SO damn hard to lose weight.

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