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Tuesday, July 29, 2008

A Weighty Issue....


I really don't know how to begin this post or quite where I will go with it, but this topic has been so much on my mind lately, I have to get it off my chest.
I will be the first to admit that here in America we have a huge(no pun intended) problem with obesity and weight. The causes and cure aren't always as easy to solve as one might think. Yes, the good old "Eat Less, Move More" theory is a good starting point, but not as easy as it may seem as our food choices aren't as simple as meets the eye. I have seen several friends go on weight loss programs and really stick to them, eating only the prescribed foods and still not lose. Of course we must consider what is in the pre-packaged foods, but that is a post for another time.
My thoughts today are on the subject of weight but not the causes or what to do about it. See, like most women I am somewhat obsessed with my weight. I will go as far as admitting something here I have only up until now admitted to my husband. I now realize at nearly 40 years old, that I have a body image problem. I saw myself "fat" at 150 lbs(which is big for my 5'3" small frame, that put me at a size 14) and I saw myself as "fat" at 102 lbs(which looking at photos, I was too thin!) and now at 115 I feel "fat."
But, it isn't just myself that puts these negative thoughts in my head. See, for some reason my weight seems to be the concern of others. Why, I don't know. I rarely talk to others about my weight other than my husband(who gets an ear full!) but when I was 102 lbs, every one accused me of being anorexic. Never mind that I was intentionally eating tons more extra calories, trying to prevent myself from losing more. I just have a fast metabolism and when I am very active(like I was doing Kendo) I have a hard time keeping weight on. Then, these same people now like to remind me that I have gained weight at 115lbs. They seriously will come up and pat my little belly and tell me I have gained weight. First, why are they paying that much attention to my weight gains and losses? Why is it they feel comfortable enough to make these comments but alone touch my body?
Trust me, I can put alot of negativity on myself, and daily battle with trying to keep my size and weight in proper prospective, these sorts of comments only hurt not help me.
I literally had one lady who is rather large insinuate I was fat at 115lbs!! Do these hurtful remarks make them feel better?
This sort of stuff reminds me of my miserable Jr. High years, being picked on or teased by the other prettier girls. Why as women do we still do this to each other in our 30s and 40s?
I have seen both sides of this. I have seen thinner ladies tell larger ladies they need to lose weight or that they have "such a pretty face" if they would only lose the weight. And I have seen larger girls circle around smaller girls making just as hurtful comments, only insinuating they are anorexic. This is just sad!
No wonder we have such problems in our society with anorexia or bulimia!! Some people, myself included, wonder how someone can do that to themselves, but I am starting to see why. The pressure we put on ourselves is bad enough, but to have the outside pressure of others being so quick to point out our flaws, only intensifies our own insecurities.
There is so much more to worry about in this life, without adding this to our plates! I mean, we should watch what we eat, and should increase our activity, just because that is the healthy thing to do for our minds and bodies, but we need to throw out the scales and find other things to talk about besides our weight or dress size!
I think the old adage "if you can't say something nice, don't say anything at all" fits here. And that includes the things we tell ourselves! You can't go wrong with that advice!

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