Monday, 28 September 2015 15:36

Dealing with weight as a social issue

Written by

Loving our bodies as they are today requires a commitment to being proudly ourselves in spite of potential judgments by others. 

There is no denying that weight stigma (that is judgement on the basis of size) is an unfortunate reality of the society in which we live.

It is hard to turn on the television or pick up a newspaper without hearing reports of the  "obesity" epidemic.” We’re fighting a “war on obesity”—or is it a war against obese people? Media campaigns targeting obesity depict fat people in dehumanizing and stigmatizing images. Fat people eating fattening foods, fat people sitting, fat people squeezed into clothes that look at least 2 sizes too small, fat people with no heads, the examples are endless. Fat people are portrayed in the media as lazy, weak-willed, self-indulgent, and a drain on the nation’s resources.

That being said we have two choices in how we can respond to this social issue today:

We can stay in on Friday nights.
We can honor the social systems that oppress us.
We can wear pants when it’s 90 degrees.
We can deny ourselves dinner dates because we’re scared of the menu.
We can wear t-shirts during sex.
We can NOT have sex.
We can blame ourselves for behaviors that are direct consequences of dieting and body shame (i.e. binge-eating).
We can fear food.
We can weight-cycle (the technical term for yo-yo dieting that is clinically understood to be far more dangerous for our bodies than fatness of any kind).
We can starve ourselves physically, emotionally, and spiritually 

…all in the name of prejudice, primarily towards women’s bodies, but increasingly towards men’s as well.

OR 

We can choose to be proudly ourselves in the face of bias.
We can stop hiding.
We can buy clothes we like now.
We can enjoy our food choices.
We can go swimming in the ocean, in a bathing suit, in daylight.
We can make love with the lights on.
We can take a stand for ourselves and all others affected by a culture of weight discrimination.
We can choose health at any size.
We can show up to our college reunion (and even get down with our bad selves?)
We can refuse to participate in body shaming behaviors (including dieting for weight loss, derogatory body talk, and/or “health shaming”).
We can live fiercely today rather than wait indefinitely for a certain body size to be happy.

How long are you going to wait to be happy in your own body? How many years do you have left on this precious planet Earth?

The choice is yours.  

Like this post? Do you like your body? What do you do to shame it or to enjoy it? I would like to hear from you. Please comment.

Read 6869 times Last modified on Monday, 28 September 2015 15:46
Login to post comments