Today on twitter I said something about fat (about how I hate the fact that getting fat is seen as worse than ANYTHING even really awful stuff). I was thinking about this because I was remembering how someone on the same ward as me in hospital (when I was having/recovering from ankle surgery recently) seemed to be more scared of getting fat than the implications of her (really bad) knee injury.
I got trolled, and I replied
and got drawn into something which I shouldn't have really, but I get
fed up of not responding and thus being silent/feeling oppressed.
The person made a bunch of assumptions which were:
- Fat people are unhealthy
- Fat people don't eat well or exercise at all
- Fat people eat McDonalds
- Parents who let their kids get fat are bad parents
- Parents who feed their kids McDonalds are bad parents
- Skinny parents with fat children are even worse
called them out and every time they would state another assumption
whilst saying they weren't talking about me personally, but fat people
as a whole. I told them what they were saying was wrong, classist, fat
shaming and health shaming (tip of the iceberg), and to be honest I think I'd
rather they had criticised *me* personally rather than making massive
generalisations about all fat people, as if that was somewhat better.
I am fed up of fat
meaning EVERYTHING else - it took 8 minutes for someone to bring up
McDonalds in reference to a tweet about nothing related. Just now I
logged in again and found that someone else has tweeted me offering
exercise "advice" and telling me that it is possible to eat well for
less. A few dieting accounts have followed me too. It's impossible to talk about fat without it being conflated with health, or morbidity, or gluttony, or a million other things.
can deal with this and I'm not upset personally - I'm used to dealing
with this every day, but I thought this would be a good time to talk about it. Most people would've brought up HAES, but I didn't,
because I'm a fat adult who was a fat kid raised by fat(sometimes)
parents who fed me McDonalds - and I'm okay and don't resent this at
all. I live a sedentary life and I'm not healthy. I don't care! So are a
lot of thin people! I also don't think anyone has an obligation to be
healthy. I think there are more complicating factors around being
healthy i.e. time, money and resources that are needed to exercise and
that not all people have access to. Hey, if you can eat healthily and exercise on a budget, I'm happy for you, honest, but this doesn't mean everyone can or even should be obliged to.
also think that using health as a get out clause ignores the wider
problem of fat shaming, that it's not fair to only defend those who are
fit, healthy, otherwise socially acceptable fat people. Making excuses that justify our right to be fat is adhering to a social agenda that insists that being fat is inherently inferior. Here's another example: on that telly programme a lot of you saw me on, I was repeatedly asked about what I ate that day, how much I exercised, what I ordered when I ate out. I refused to give "good" answers (or "bad" answers), but the necessity for me to tell them this was there. I'm sure none of the other participants faced that sort of questioning.
I don't care if
you're fat because it's genetic, because you're lazy or unhealthy, if you can't exercise or afford to eat well, I don't care if you're slightly fat, or if you're super fat, if we can't support each other in different lifestyles, then fat acceptance isn't acceptance at all. So you won't catch me talking about health when I talk about the right to be fat, to live fat and to exist without being shamed.