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#406078 - 04/12/08 09:29 PM Obese Feel More Discrimination
Lisa LowCarb / VideoGames Offline
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#406088 - 04/12/08 09:41 PM Re: Obese Feel More Discrimination [Re: Lisa LowCarb / VideoGames]
M o e Offline
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I don't think it was accepted by the people who had to put up with it. I think we've become a more vocal society and stand up for our rights now than our counterparts.
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#406828 - 04/14/08 09:19 PM Re: Obese Feel More Discrimination [Re: M o e]
Lisa LowCarb / VideoGames Offline
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I definitely agree that there are always people who feel that weight-related teasing is inappropriate! But I do know several heavy people who felt it was "normal" at the time to be teased about their larger weight. I guess an analogy would be a red-headed person being teased about being fiery. Some red-heads would probably dislike that greatly - but I know some red-heads who are OK or even proud of that teasing and relish the attention.

I think it may also be cultural - not that long ago, Italians would push their kids to eat a ton, and being heavy was a sign of wealth. They were proud of being heavy, of not being poor and needy. The same is true in many Indian cultures. So sometimes being thin was "bad thing" and they would be scolded to put more meat on their bones.

If you grew up in an Italian household where it was continually reinforced that you should eat more, be heavier and that thin was bad, then if you're teased about being large you're like "You bet I am!" smile
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#406845 - 04/14/08 09:42 PM Re: Obese Feel More Discrimination [Re: Lisa LowCarb / VideoGames]
kristen houghton Offline
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Cruelty sometimes masquerades as teasing. It should not be accepted.

I'm a size eight and there have been times when someone said I should "really be in a six or four." Why?

I think as a country we are way too preoccupied with weight. Yes, obesity can be dangerous but not everyone can or should be a size 0. That can be dangerous as well.
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#407005 - 04/15/08 02:48 AM Re: Obese Feel More Discrimination [Re: kristen houghton]
Lisa LowCarb / VideoGames Offline
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I agree completely!! How often has there been a situation where someone said something mean - and someone else pointed it out - and the first person said "Oh I was only teasing". So it's OK to say mean things if you mean them as a joke?

Is that like spanking your child and then saying "Oh ha ha that was a joke!"

I'm sure every one of us can remember being teased about something as a child. Isn't it amazing how a "non important thing" (in the eyes of many adults) can stick with us for our entire lives? Do we remember the praise we received in the same way?
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#407019 - 04/15/08 03:19 AM Re: Obese Feel More Discrimination [Re: Lisa LowCarb / VideoGames]
Nicki - BF & EC Editor Offline
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Registered: 10/13/07
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I don't think teasing is ever acceptable for any reason. Making yourself feel better at someone else's expense serves no purpose and is lose-lose for everyone.

However, I will say, at the risk of being seriously flamed, that I have to constantly work on my own prejudices towards severely obese people. I'm not talking about an urge to make fun of them, but the concept of prejudice in the true sense of the word. I grew up with overweight (not actually obese) parents, and I never understood why they made the choices they did with their health and nutrition, and their bodies suffered physically (and still do) from carrying around the extra weight. For them at least, it didn't have to be that way.

Now I know that there are all kinds of medical conditions that cause obesity. But I have a hard time shaking the notion that morbidly obese people have a lack of self-control and self-respect. I can't imagine letting that happen to my body -- not because of vanity, but simply because I would feel absolutely terrible. When I am carrying an extra 5 pounds, I feel completely weighted down. It's not a society thing (heck, I could lose 20 pounds and it might actually look worse because my post-two-baby stomach gets flabbier when it isn't rounded out a little bit with some weight!). But I just feel draggy and miserable.

When I see an obese person eating an unhealthy meal at a restaurant, I have to admit, I have a lot of trouble with that. I've never been faced with the issue, but I wonder if I ever had a morbidly obese person interview for a job with me, I think I might worry that there would be not only increased health difficulties and risk of disability issues, but also that there are personality issues like self-discipline and self-respect, and how they would represent the office to others, etc. I'm sure that's wrong -- but that's the whole nature of facing up to our prejudices -- trying to identify how they are manifesting them, so that we can try to sort them out from reality of individuals when we are faced with those who trigger them.

Is that making any sense?? Please don't hurt me! I just found this topic intriguing and wanted to reply from the heart.

Nicki
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#407032 - 04/15/08 03:51 AM Re: Obese Feel More Discrimination [Re: Nicki - BF & EC Editor]
Lisa LowCarb / VideoGames Offline
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We definitely appreciate you posting - it is very hard to talk about issues like this, and this is a way that many people feel. The only way for people to learn and become more aware is to talk about it and to read while others talk about it. I'm sure there are many forum readers here who agree with you completely but who were too afraid to post.

We have talked about this on and off in other threads, and there are certainly *many* reasons why people become heavy. The Biggest Loser often talks about how people have underlying emotional issues and those then are physically shown in obesity. That of course isn't all of it - some people have thyroid issues etc. So it can be a wide variety of things. But for a portion of people, it's emotional. They turn to food for comfort. Family and friends let them down - but food always soothes them and is dependable. It's an *extremely* hard crutch to give up.

Also, people who grow up eating a certain way think of it as 100% normal and would simply not think about eating differently. They honestly don't like other foods. So it is doubly difficult (maybe quadrupally difficult) to change their eating style.

So that all being said as background, I will help expand the debate a little in this direction since it is so hard to talk about. My boyfriend is about 280. So very heavy. I try my very best to set a good example, eat salads, ask for healthy food, fill the house with healthy food. Then he comes home with a pizza that he ate on the way home. It does frustrate me. He knows it's not good for him. He's unable to do sports he enjoys because of his current size. He was down to 220 a few years ago (from being 300) when we both began low carb. He knows how to eat healthily. He creates most of the recipes I post on the site. And yet he stops and gets junk food from a restaurant where he could easily have ordered something healthy.

He's extremely smart too (Mensa level) so it's not that he doesn't know. It is that he's reacting emotionally to food, rather than thinking about it.

So yes it does frustrate me *immensely* because it's having a direct impact on what we can do, what he can do, and on his health.
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#407038 - 04/15/08 04:01 AM Re: Obese Feel More Discrimination [Re: Lisa LowCarb / VideoGames]
GreyDrakkon Offline
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Registered: 01/10/08
Posts: 613
I have to say I'm more in Nicki's frame of mind than anything. When I see someone who's very overweight eating something horrible for them, I get the same feeling as when I see someone hacking out a lung but is a smoker. Sure, they're obviously addicted to their poison of choice, but it makes it no less sad and frustrating.

Lisa, it really sounds like your guy has to do some digging and find out what exactly he's trying to bury with that food. He's sabotaging himself because it's easier than working on the problem that's behind it. (I know how you feel in a way. My guy's a smoker, and WANTS to quit, and has tried a few times but he keeps going back to it).

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#407045 - 04/15/08 04:38 AM Re: Obese Feel More Discrimination [Re: GreyDrakkon]
Ruthe AfricanAmericanEd Offline
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Shark

Registered: 03/26/08
Posts: 393
I have to say, that it really hurts to the core all the stigma that goes with being obese. Here's the clutch in my craw: for every person, there is a different reason for their weight issues. Yet, just by looking at someone, a snap judgement is made based upon what we see with our eyes and not our heart. Sure, you see that person eating something that is obviously not good for them; yet, you don't necessarily know that they eat like that all the time.

I have struggled with my weight my entire life. I know my overeating was emotional. Why? Because, as a child a went through a series of physical and mental abuse. I was even told that because I was beautiful, I should expect these things to happen to me! Talk about screwing me up for a while! So, every time someone called me beautful; I got scared and started to eat.

As I gained weight, I didn't like it; but I felt secure. I figured: If I'm fat and ugly, no one will touch me again!
All through school, I struggled. Wantingto fit in, and do what all my friends were doing. And, at the same time, fighting the inner demons. But, you know what really got me? I still was popular, and everyone said how beautiful I was. And, when I would share with my closests friends my low self-esteem and insecurities--they couldn't believe it! They always thought that I was confident and self assured. It couldn't be further from the truth at the time.

Obesity is a disease. Sometimes physical; sometimes emotional; sometimes both. No one will ever get an obese person to lose weight by snickering, laughing, ridiculing, judging, or poking fun of. Believe it or not, there are some people hat are actually happy with themselves. If that's the case, God bless them. I was not one of those who were. I still have a long way to go. And, when I say I've tried just about everything! Believe me I have!

Not every obese person is unhealthy either. I bet that's a shock too many people. I believe in getting my yearly physicals. I've been to dieticians, nutritionists. I've followed things to the "T", and nothing. I have no diabetes. No high blo pressure or cholestoral. I walk everyday, I exercise. And yet, here I am, still in a battle, and baffling my doctors as well. I don't do well with meat, or high fat foods. They don't agree with me. And, I am definitely not a juk food eater. So, what do I do? Pray. because only God has the answer to this one.

It's hard to be looked at as though you are lazy, and have no self respect. Especially when you know in your heart all you desire and have done. It's even harder when you get knocked down by people's hurtful and harmful words, snickers, and stares. No one knows the heart and the situation of an obese person, unless they share it with you. But I do know, that understanding, and a kind word goes a lot further than a disguted stare, and shake of the head.

Boy! Did I ramble on! Didn't mean to do that. However, this subject clearly hits home in so many different ways, and on many levels.
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#407090 - 04/15/08 07:03 AM Re: Obese Feel More Discrimination [Re: Ruthe AfricanAmericanEd]
Lisa LowCarb / VideoGames Offline
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GreyDrakkon- thank you so much for posting! I definitely understand your smoking and lung analogy. A lot of the same situations happen with smoking. People start smoking for all sorts of reasons - because their family did, because it is an "easy happy feeling" that is not denied them. Then once they are in that situation, it is exceedingly hard to get out of it.

I'm sure we all know people who smoke and who no longer want to - but it is awesomely hard to stop. You could just say "well, stop buying the cigarettes! Stop putting them into your mouth!" But it is so much harder than that. It's not just about that tube. It's about the habits, the good feeling, and it's emotional too. It's a lot of different things all rolled up into one.
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