fat

‘She’s fat. It’s a good thing she’s nice. Otherwise, no one would pay attention to her.’ They both giggled and left the restroom. I stayed in the stall, frozen. I knew I needed to blend in.’

“I became aware that I was different from the other perfect, small, blonde girls. So, I hid my glasses, grew my hair out, and started dressing better. I realized I needed to walk tall, shift my shoulders back, and smile to draw any and all attention away from the rest of my body.”

‘You’d be SO MUCH prettier if you lost weight.’ I was 10. My siblings got juice, while I was only offered water. When we got into fights, ‘fatty’ was their low blow.’

“With a disgusted look, my own trainer asked, ‘Why are you SO overweight?’ I felt like I was just punched in my (fat) gut. I cancelled my gym membership and dropped out of high school. Ashamed and embarrassed, I just wanted to crawl in a hole and cry. I always felt in competition with my siblings.”

‘People went out of their way to ignore me, as if being fat was contagious. Others used me as a lesson for their kids. ‘Look! This is what happens when you don’t eat right!’ I couldn’t find happiness, so food was my escape.’

“My weight got to the point where standing was painful. My wife got used to my answer being ‘no’ to everything. The panic set in. Was my weight ruining her life? Was I trapping her? Did she resent me for that? Did she still find me attractive or fun to be around?”

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