I had this very cohesive thought and it was so great…when I was in the shower this morning. D’oh! I hate that! So much has happened since then that I can’t really remember my whole schpeel, but here goes:
You know the people who insist it’s unhealthy to be fat? The ones who are major yo-yo dieters? The ones where dieting is a religion? Or the ones where, “I just want you to be happy and healthy and you can’t be happy and fat?!” The people who practically gargle with diet soda and energy drinks? The people who believe in their heart of hearts (how did that become a saying?) that being fat is a choice? That being fat is a personal failure or sin?
These are the people we cannot change. They refuse to question the information being fed to them. They are marketed to very specifically and they swallow every last calorie-free morsel with a smile (and a side-eye towards the fat)! They have resigned themselves to a life of judgment, shame, guilt, penance and sadly, ignorance. Those who don’t even bother to read the labels on their diet beverages and bars and energy thingies but will most certainly tell you why what you’re eating is so “bad bad bad!” go about the world in a bubble. We cannot reach them. And I don’t think we should even try.
You may be thinking that this is very cynical of me or very judgmental, I’m not judging people by their looks, but by their actions. I do think that this is an acceptable form of judgment for the most part. I believe that your actions and impact in/on the world should convey your true self or nature. I may be off base here and if I am, do let me know. All I am saying is that this group of people who insist upon “health” and then turn around and commit to a life of feeling gross in the name of dieting? We cannot get to them or even convince them that being fat is not a choice. No more than we can convince many other groups who target and/or attack the oppressed and marginalized with hate and violence. We just can’t and I don’t think we should waste our resources on them. I am saying that it’s time to walk away from these people and let them be. I know they won’t let us be, but we don’t have to engage with them in conversation or debates.
I do think we should be trying to get our message of positivity and overall health for everyone out into the public! I think that their are millions who would be open to it and benefit from it! The more people I drop the f-bomb on (FAT!) the more are surprised and open to hearing more facts! Because people are suspicious, people are angry and people are tired of the same old marketing and dieting run around. Somewhere along the way their common sense said, “Hmm…this doesn’t seem quite right.” but with nothing else to go on they simply leave it be. That’s where Fat Liberation can fit in! We can offer our resources and information and help people! Yes, help actual people live better lives & happier lives! Without guilt or shame!
Yes, I wish everyone could read “Health At Every Size” by Linda Bacon PHD. I do! Because it is an eye opener, a mind expander and a path towards understanding just how fucked up this dieting thing is and what it’s doing to our bodies and minds! It’s sick and it’s dangerous! When I first read that dieting fucks with your brain chemistry, I had to take a lap, y’all! I had to let that shit sink in for a good while. I value my brain! I value my body! I value my sanity and my life! I just do, not sure if this is an instinctive behavior or if I’ve developed this over my 33 years of life. But damn! We are being abused and punished and shamed for lies made up by someone else (dieting industry/marketing) for profit! But what it’s doing to millions of people all over the western world is a crime against nature and not just humanity!
These corporate machines are created for one purpose: Profit! Greed! Riches! The result is hundreds of millions of disordered eaters, self-haters, body abusers, fucked up brain chemistry and the inability to even know what and when and how hunger feels like or fullness feels like or how to satiate and fuel our bodies. We’re complicated little entities. No doubt! But these corporations know exactly what they are doing. Jenny Craig is owned by Nestle. Weight Watchers was owned by Heinz (and they still make their packaged products) and is now owned by Artal Luxembourg who is also heavily invested in Keebler cookies and Sunshine biscuits. Think about that for a minute. These corporations have no interest in your health or well being, they only want your wallets emptied into their coffers! You tell someone this and their eyes bug right out of their head. Go ahead, lay some truth on ’em!
A friend recently posed this to me in regards to intuitive eating:
“encouraging intuitive eating while also insisting that processed foods are A-Okay. there are armies of evil scientists working round the clock designing foods that are intended to completely fuck all normal human hunger and satiety signals. how can anyone manage to eat intuitively when they are pumped full of pseudofood-drugs designed to insure they will never feel either genuine hunger or genuine satiety? different foods don’t have different moral worth. but they do have different biological effects. to me it just seems like setting people up for endless frustration and unhappiness, if they continue to attempt to eat intuitively while also ingesting things that make that completely impossible, by design.”
“We’re talking about teaching intuitive eating to disordered eaters. To help get them started on the path to healthier/healthy eating you must start with the behavior first and then worry about the ingredients. Fish versus fishing, you know? Once a person does actually begin to listen to and understand the nutritional cues their body is signaling then they can start to focus on specific nutrients they need and various ways to get it. It is so difficult to break away from the disordered eating and food associated guilt that I wouldn’t worry about what actual food they are eating yet, they have to start somewhere, ya know? To remove the pretend moral values of food is a near impossibility for some.”
And she got it! It made sense. And it gives me hope that the more people we can explain this stuff to the better our chances of seeing an end to the discrimination and hate…one day. And I know it sucks to read those two words: one day. *sigh* but it’s enough to keep me in the fight! It’s worth it! No one deserves the hate and shame and bullshit that gets flung so freely towards us just for how we look! It’s bullshit and I feel that we need to be more vocal about the specifics on why it’s bullshit! Follow the money trail and you will see what I mean!
I want to nurture our bodies and minds. I want to embrace my fellow fats and let them know that I love them, I value them. I want to keep our allies close! I think we need a very specific and simple Fat Liberation hub where all resources and information and links can be found. Not a blog, mind you, just a resource database type of thing. Something anyone could stumble upon and understand. I want us to create a truly supportive community and branch that out into our local communities. We can do workshops and educational seminars. We can create fun and positive events and encourage activism! And finally, but I think most importantly, we should continue to support one another and encourage each other!
I know this was a bit of a rant, but so be it. This is how my brain works sometimes. I’d love to hear your thoughts. Or you know what? Just let me know how you’re doing! Ha-ha! Thanks for reading! <3