I’ve spent a year in a state of flux. Wanting to lose more weight, losing nothing. And now it feels like the scales are falling from my eyes once more as I see, that for me, dieting does not provide the answers I hoped for.
But more than that. I am tired of the hate filled criticism and body shaming that comes from “reformed fatties”. You know the ones, the people who found a method that worked for them, and for whom strict regimes of diet and exercise have proved that all you need to do is “Eat Less and Move More!” Or the experts who will tell you “I used to eat junk and now I don’t and all you need is a positive mind to get a positive body!”
The messages filter in. They are easy to believe. This time I will do it. This time I will stick to a plan because here are examples of other people who have done it. Clearly I just need will power and dedication.
But what these people miss is that weight is a symptom of something else. It is not the cause of everything that is dark and evil. So when someone like Steve Miller is telling folks to tell their fat friends and family they are fat, he is wanting to address a symptom without looking at the real issues behind it. And if those issues aren’t addressed, then what chance is there of permanent change?
It’s why I lean towards people such as Geneen Roth and Beyond Chocolate once more. And Geneen is great at describing me without knowing me. She talks about how we keep going back to the past, and act as if we are still the people we were. If we learnt to use food as a way of protecting us from the fear of feelings, chances are, that is what we are continuing to do. To actually bring ourselves into the moment, and to be aware of where we are now, how we feel physically, can break the habit of reaching for food to numb the fear or pain. It is hard. It is exposing. And it is something that we can only come to when we are ready. But it can bring about real positive long lasting change. Because we are addressing those root causes.
If someone is genuinely concerned about a fat friend or family member, surely the important thing to do is just be there? “How are you?” “How are things?” “What is going on in your life?” “What can I do to support you?” surely these are questions that will bring about a more positive situation than “You’re fat”.
The success stories of former fatties can bring about a belief that we can change if only we do x, y and z, and that can be great and helpful. But the stories where former fatties forget their past, and forget their humanity are tragic. Fat shaming does not bring about positive, long lasting change. It might bring about quick change. It might motivate for a few weeks, but until one is motivated to address the limiting habits of their past, nothing is going to last.
Steve Miller continues to bang on about the cost of obesity on the NHS. So what is his real motivation for fat shaming? Sure sounds like it’s financial rather than personal care. He makes money from writing about fat shaming. He makes money from fat shaming folk into becoming clients, and he complains about fat people costing him via his taxes.
He also calls people who disagree with him “rodents”.
Is this someone who really has your interest at heart?