You don't need to lose weight to be worthy
"I just really worry about your health. You've got so much going for you, if you lost the weight you could have it all!"
I try to ignore comments like this, but man, they really hit hard when they come from people I love. In my gut, it's always felt wrong to me when people discuss someone's health based on their physical appearance. Slim, tall bodies are toted as being the epidomy of health, while anyone in a larger body is considered unhealthy. Forget the nuances of eating disorders, physical illness, and mental illness that can all contribute to a slimmer figure that society views as "healthy", what about the idea that maybe, just maybe, someone else's health is none of your business?
I studied nutrition in college, and I remember the videos and slides we watched that showed larger bodies in one of two ways: 1. Villified the person in the larger body as lazy, with no regard for their own health. 2. Pittied the person in the larger body for having genetic or socio-economic factors that caused their "situation".
This left me and the rest of my all white classmates with the idea that people in larger bodies needed saving. And I should be the one to do it. I should put on my privaleged, white savior suit and save all the sad, apathetic people from their misery of life in a larger body.
Only, when I gained weight in my 30s and understood (not fully, as I'm in a mid-size body, which still experiences a lot of thin privalege) what it's like on the other side of this narrative, did I realize just how wrong it is.
1. White saviorism isn't the answer to any of our world's problems
2. Being in a larger body isn't a problem that needs to be solved
3. I really want to say that again. BEING IN A LARGER BODY ISN'T A PROBLEM THAT NEEDS TO BE SOLVED.
4. Another person's health is none of my business
When did our society get to a place where when we see someone simply existing in a larger body, we feel it's not only our right, but our DUTY to comment on their "health". Health comes in all shapes and sizes. And unless you are literally somone's doctor I promise you, they don't want your opinion or advice on their health.
Losing weight doesn't make you more worthy of existence.
Losing weight doesn't make you more worthy of privacy.
And losing weight doesn't make you more worthy of boldly, and loudly living the life you want to live! And if anyone tells you otherwise, feel free to send them this article.
Much love, Jessica.