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JFROGSPYDER Posts: 4,901
9/5/13 2:35 P

I find it extremely offensive that someone ASSUMES a person is "weak" because they are obese!!!! That goes beyond judgemental!!!! You don't seem to have a clue about obesity!!!! While there may be some who are "weak" when it comes to food choices or exercising, SOME have health issues that have caused...directly.....their obesity!! To assume that ALL obese people are weak is as bad as racism or any other form of discrimination & is intolerable!!!! I can not believe that this same nonsense keeps getting posted!!!!

I have been morbidly obese, thin, obese, etc. depending on choices I made.....but.....my initial obesity was the direct result of medical issues & treatments!!!! Now, it is due to the choices I make!! When I was is in an administrative position that included hiring, if I had a job that required a particular skill, whether physical or mental or dexterity or whatever, I judged applicants equally & they all had to prove they could do the job!! Yes I took into account their resume, but they had to show me in a test setting that they could do whatever the job was!! I have never assumed that just because someone was obese in appearance that they were not capable of doing a physical job or receptionist or whatever!!!! I also find that commercial for the movie EXTREMELY offensive!!!!

This is a healthy lifestyle site & people come here for support & encouragement & to make their lives better, NOT to have to read some of this offensive, judgmental posting & opinions!! PLEASE consider the next time you see an obese person, don't automatically assume they are WEAK for whatever reason, consider them as a person with feelings first!!!!

STARCROSS SparkPoints: (55,863)
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9/5/13 2:30 P

As my mother would say...There but for the grace of God..... there go I ! and I say Amen!

SIMPLYME80 Posts: 406
9/5/13 2:26 P

I don't judge-they are who they are. I am still "big" and when I see a person around my highest weight of 325+ lbs, I am reminded of how I felt at that weight. Some people do accept their weight, a few cultures have the belief the "Larger" women are sexy. I have No Right to Judge ANYONE and DON"T. I am secure enough, have enough pride and self esteem I Don't have to put another person Down to feel better about Myself. People are noticed for various reasons, Some are are bone skinny ( cancer perhaps?) , wear saggy jeans ready to fall off their arse, to much makeup, attempting to look like a famous person, or a normal family out having fun, or whatever! Most of the time, someone may be looking Because You happen to LOOK nice whatever your Size! Sometime, my husband will remark on a extremely obese person (I take it as often directed at me) I smile and respond, they look very nice, the -----they are wearing looks very nice on them!

Edited by: SIMPLYME80 at: 9/5/2013 (14:36)
SHERYLDS Posts: 12,180
9/5/13 2:12 P

NUWALK....no one has suggested you leave or asked you not to respond....
they simply don't agree with some of your statements.
That's what a discussion is...an exchange of ideas.
You seem to perceive things as bashing (both here and on the EMOTIONS AND OBESITY thread). That's your opinion....some others have disagreed with you.

You have expressed a desire for a
"discussion about how do we stop discrimination (in hiring, housing, medical care, social groups, in public, public facilities/services, on simply the right to be out in public living our lives) or how do we overcome difficulties with emotional eating, problematic lifestyle issues, consistency, access to help" entered 9/5/2013 11:34
I merely suggested that you open that thread...I think a lot of people would find it interesting.

It appears that you have an issue with me.
I'm the one who has made some statements that you don't like.
I'm the one who said duck and run emoticon .
I'm not bashing anyone...I am simply participating in the discussion and voicing my thoughts.

MYRMEN SparkPoints: (24,389)
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9/5/13 2:04 P

Yes, their weight does cross my mind, however, I don't juge. People juge you for every reason not just because you're fat. If you're handicapped, not walking fast enough, no wearing fashionned clothes, respecting the speed limits, being you, because your child is crying in a store or runs everywhere, because your child is not properly raised (what they don't know, he's autistic).

I really try to walk a mile in their shoes before making any comments on people.

emoticon

XCLOSED Posts: 671
9/5/13 1:57 P

no, I won't get in a tit for tat who said this or that. and no I won't leave or be told to not respond. It is clear in the reading of the thread, and for those who must persist, reconsider what you are doing to/regarding others. It is not ok. At some point, it also will not be socially ok to say it either.

PLUGINALONG SparkPoints: (24,468)
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9/5/13 1:54 P

I tend to think, even though I am overweight, that extremely overweight people need to "lose the weight" for various reasons, being happier, being healthier, having a better life, etc. So I am guilty for judging on first impressions. I do know however, how hard it is to lose, keep it off, etc so I do have a sense of being aware of all the pitfalls that goes along with this.

BUNNYKICKS Posts: 2,329
9/5/13 1:49 P

This is a difficult topic to think about, as it is really unpleasant to reflect on the fact that "people are judging me negatively." It would be easier on my heart to think that people typically looked at me and suspended judgement based on physical appearance, that the content of my character was shining through for all to see, that I wasn't missing opportunities, being snickered at or (worse) pitied....

But that isn't the case. We are constantly making first impressions on others, and experiencing our own first-impressions about others. And the bitter pill of it all is - excessive weight can and does provoke "negative" first impressions. "I feel sorry for them." "I know they cannot be happy." Etc. Negative reactions from normal-weight people because they don't really understand... and from overweight/formerly-overweight people because they do.

I do not LIKE the fact that my excess weight was throwing up one more first-impression-barrier that I would have to work extra-hard to break through. But, perhaps, it's character building. I don't know.

CAMEOSUN SparkPoints: (81,283)
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9/5/13 1:22 P

Judging or Discerning. The person you saw walking across the street...my 1st thought would be 'sad for them.' Maybe they don't know how to get healthy again or have given up? I was at the doctor's office & a morbidly obese woman was there - she couldn't walk & she was having a hard time breathing. It was sad to see. Our choices can make or break us. No one should judge, but discern that someone needs help/ guidance.

NWLIFESRC Posts: 9,316
9/5/13 1:15 P

Dont do it

ZIGGY122 Posts: 2,162
9/5/13 12:23 P

When I see a really morbid obese person I usually say a little prayer for them, just like when I am in traffic and an ambulance goes by, My opinion we don't know what they are having to deal with in their lives.

PTREE15 SparkPoints: (7,392)
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9/5/13 12:12 P

And there WHAT is?

NUWALK, I think you should be specific about your issues with whatever posts have bothered you. If people aren't aware they are being offensive, how will they know to stop if you don't point out the offensiveness? You say you won't be silent, yet you aren't specific about exactly what you find offensive. It may not be as obvious to some as it is to you. You can't just call something "bashing" without providing specifics. A discussion is not "bashing." And that is what some people here are trying to have, without the emotion attached to it.

And off-topic, sort of...the phrase "calling a spade a spade," while rooted in usuage as a type of shovel, is considered offensive to some because of racial connotations.

NEWMEXICOPARROT Posts: 200
9/5/13 12:10 P

When I see someone who is obese I really feel bad for them. I was there once and I never want to go back. I know how hard it is and I hope they find something inside of them to inspire/movtivate them to being a journey of healthy lifestyle. I can't help but think about the US population as a whole...I went to Europe and I have to say that the number of obese people I noted during the day was significantly less than a typical day here. (definitely not a scientific study just an observation)

XCLOSED Posts: 671
9/5/13 12:06 P

and there it is. As this is a conversation, this is my thought and my opinion and my observation of what I have read here. And I am saying, it is not ok.

Again, I will not sit down, shut up, grow up or go away, ignore, disengage or let it pass. Until enough people say stop, things are unlikely to change. And what slays me the most, is when it happens here.



ASHLEYGILLE SparkPoints: (11,171)
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9/5/13 11:58 A

I felt judged when I was overweight and I sometimes feel judged even now that I'm at goal. :(

SHERYLDS Posts: 12,180
9/5/13 11:58 A

NUWALK .... why don't you open a thread on how we stop discrimination or how do we overcome difficulties with emotional eating. I'm sure lots of people would be interested in participating

what is stopping you emoticon

Edited by: SHERYLDS at: 9/5/2013 (11:58)
JHAACK39 SparkPoints: (12,181)
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9/5/13 11:54 A

I'd echo much of what PTREE said.

I'm sure there was some judgment going on. And maybe not even judging or even evaluating, but simply "noticing". Just as I noticed if they had long hair or short hair. Or what color their shirt was. But nothing that I wouldn't have leveled at myself. Not judging their intelligence, human value, character, or their own personal strength. Just noticing that they weighed more than was probably healthy. Just as I did or could be again. I also knew that I COULD make the decision to change it at some point. Just as I know anyone else can.

So, I never ascribed fault to it. You can't 'fault' someone for not doing something they haven't decided to do yet. I believe once anyone truly decides to do something. They will. I just can't bring myself to judge a person's character for something they haven't done yet.

I guess now that I'm not so big. I feel even more strongly that way.

I only judge dog walkers and people at the gym who pretend to be working out but are really just sitting at a machine on their cell phone.

Edited by: JHAACK39 at: 9/5/2013 (12:09)
XCLOSED Posts: 671
9/5/13 11:34 A

Yeah, there is some bashing going on here (I won't name specific posts, it is clear in the reading), and what's worse, if you are obese, then it is fat people bashing fat people.

There is nothing wrong with discussing discrimination and issues of judgment. It is wrong to tell people to stand aside, go away, don't show up, crack the jokes and then duck and cover, poke the bear. It is not funny, and sadly, there is a rash of judgment and discrimination against the obese, all races, both genders, akin to the discrimination against races, religion, disabled and other protected classes endured.

When is the last time you tolerated statements such as "I assume that the stupid thing the race person did because they have inferior genetics", or "the protected class type people are repulsive", or or or, just substitute weak, inferior, lazy, whatever.

And there is a pattern of judgmental bashing going on not only here, but recently across the threads (and prevalent in society) justified in the name of just my opinion, or I was talking, and also smacking people who oppose it. Not ok.

Are you furthering the stereotypes? Are you inviting people to pile on?

That is different than a discussion about how do we stop discrimination (in hiring, housing, medical care, social groups, in public, public facilities/services, on simply the right to be out in public living our lives) or how do we overcome difficulties with emotional eating, problematic lifestyle issues, consistency, access to help.

Just calling a spade a spade here, and I will speak against it when I encounter it, here and in society. I have been silent too long. Too many are silent. Rosa Parks had it right when she sat down.

If this applies to you, this is not likely to change what you are doing until enough people say

emoticon and emoticon against it.



Edited by: XCLOSED at: 9/5/2013 (11:51)
PTREE15 SparkPoints: (7,392)
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9/5/13 11:10 A

You are welcome, Jasminemars.
I, too, agree that there is no bashing going on. It's an attempt at rational discussion about a serious, sensitive issue. No one is name-calling or making fun, at least from the posts I have read. It's a hot-button topic for sure, but by being thoughtful and honest about it, it might lead to better understanding and less judgment.

GRAMMYNSC Posts: 669
9/5/13 11:07 A

Matthew 7:1-5
Luke 6:37


SHERYLDS Posts: 12,180
9/5/13 11:01 A

Most of us are sensitive to comments and criticisms about our weight because of past experiences. It is easy to understand that this would be a sensitive issue. No one wants to be reminded of their flaws. I am obese. I know what things contributed to my weight issues. I suspect that other people have similar issues.
I can’t change how someone else sees me…but I can change myself.

The dictionary defines weakness as weakness
1. the state or quality of being weak
2. a deficiency or failing, as in a person's character
3. a self-indulgent fondness or liking ( a weakness for chocolates)

I think most of us recognize that our food choices, our eating habits, our fondness for sugar/fat/salt, our emotional eating, and our activity levels most likely played a part in our obesity. Part of the solution is accepting some responsibility for our actions, so that we can change that behavior and lead a healthier lifestyle.


Edited by: SHERYLDS at: 9/5/2013 (11:04)
SHERYLDS Posts: 12,180
9/5/13 3:26 A

this is not bashing....this is discussing ....I am exchanging ideas.
I am not putting anyone down or condemning ...I am simply stating my reaction when I see someone else. I am obese. I know what it feels like.
People make assumptions when they see someone else...it's a normal reaction.
I don't think less of the person, I just Assume that the weight is probably food/activity level related....not necessarily illness related.
I think of a bad relationship with food as having a weakness...

Support comes from being able to discuss things like adults...
even if we disagree on some issues.



XCLOSED Posts: 671
9/5/13 12:33 A

emoticon Really? This is not ok; it is not ok to bash overweight people, then duck and run for cover.

Not funny, not acceptable, not justifiable, not even saying it is just an/my opinion.

Especially not here, on a website where people come for help and support.

When I encounter such as this, I will no longer sit down, shut up, grow up, go away, sit in the back of the bus, ignore it, nor fail to say: Stop! It is not funny, it is not for ridicule, it is not acceptable. Not now, not ever again.

And don't bother telling me I am being negative, rude or angry. Instead, things change when people stop tolerating it.

JASMINEMARS Posts: 133
9/4/13 10:13 P

PTREE15, Great, honest and detailed answers. I very much enjoyed reading your post. Thank you!

PTREE15 SparkPoints: (7,392)
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9/4/13 9:17 P

Everybody judges to some degree, no matter what the person looks like.
But, to answer the specific questions:
"When you see a fat person out in public (not mildly chubby, but having a serious weight issue), what do you think about them?"
I think of how uncomfortable it must be for someone really big to get around. I know how hard it was for me and I wasn't nearly as overweight as say, someone who needs to lose a couple of hundred pounds. I also think about how awful they must feel when people stare at them. I assume they are unhappy, which might not be the case for all obese people. I just judge it according to my experience; I was miserable when I was overweight, so I assume all other overweight people feel the same, which might be an incorrect assumption on my part. I also think about how hard it must be to travel, say by plane, or trying to go to the movies, or just to try to take a walk.

"Do you immediately draw some conclusions about that person (automatic assumptions, even if you know they are wrong)?" I suppose I do. Initially, I think, how much food do they eat a day to maintain that weight? But then I start thinking it might be medical issue, or perhaps they are binge-eaters or emotional eaters and maybe they can't exercise because of some medical issue (aside from obesity). I don't really assume too much else.

'Do you think fatness signals a sign of weakness in a person?'
No. There are so many variables when it comes to obesity. I didn't consider myself weak when I was overweight. I thought of myself as just unmotivated to do something about it.

"Would you be less likely to hire a fat person?"
To be honest, I probably wouldn't hire an obese person for a job that requires a lot of physical work. It really depends on the person and the job. And don't shoot me, but if I'm an employer, and I have a choice between an obese person and a healthy-weight person, my first inclination, however discriminatory that may be, is to hire the thinner person because I'm assuming (maybe incorrectly, I might add) that the obese person is a medical nightmare waiting to happen. It's stupid, because thin people have plenty of medical issues as well, but I would likely tend to think the heavier person already has medical issues that would cost a lot of money. And sad as it is to say, companies are always looking to cut costs.

"Do you feel empathy whenever you see a really overweight person, or do you think they are lazy or stupid (even if you know that is wrong, and immediately dismiss the notion soon after you think it)?"
Yes, I feel empathy. Having had an extra 50 pounds on me was not fun, so I can't imagine how awful it must feel to have three times that extra weight. No, I don't think an obese person is lazy or stupid. Physical size has nothing to do with intelligence.



SHERYLDS Posts: 12,180
9/3/13 8:05 A

When I see an obese person exercising...I assume that they are trying to do something about their weight.
When I see an obese person eating salads......I assume that they are trying to do something about their weight.
When I see an obese person walking with a pace, arms swinging, on a trail...I assume they are exercising.

And it doesn't matter what size they are....
When I see the line at the fast food drive thru...I don't assume it's for the salads
When I see a shopping cart full of junk food, processed food, regular soda, ice cream and cookies...I assume the person eats that stuff.

is that judging people...maybe. But we make assumptions based on things we see.
It's an opinion based on the data we see.

OUT_OF_MY_TOWER SparkPoints: (403)
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9/3/13 7:12 A

I dont feel bad for people who give up. Natural Selection.

OUT_OF_MY_TOWER SparkPoints: (403)
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9/3/13 7:10 A

Yes. I judge them.

I dont judge their intelligence, but i judge their place in a community that isnt modern America.

If this was frontier or exploration times. they would be a weak, slow moving, less productive, financial liability.

If our country goes to war, they will be a weak, slow moving, less productive, resource liability.

I do NOT think they are stupid. I do NOT assume they are doing nothing to change the situation (for all i know, that awesome lady is celebrating 50 pounds down! WOOHOO!) I do NOT think they are personally worth less than anyone else.

But when hiring for a job, or choosing people to be on my end of the world team, or choosing a partner in life - I want someone who is walking proof of strength, self-discipline, personal awareness, constant improvement, successful goal setting, values themselves and is never happy with "good enough".

I WANT to be judged on my appearance. I want people to look at my body and make assumptions about me. I want them to see my muscles and my abilities and my shape and understand that I am a force of nature, a strong, capable, advantage. I strive for excellence. And I want their judgment of me to end with the word, obviously.

SO yes, I judge overweight people. Not as individuals. Your worth to your friends and family cant have a price tag put on it. You are priceless.

But to strangers, not so much.

So at least try to stand on the side of the aisle so people can pass you in the supermarket while you're eating whatever you picked up from the bakery in the back of the store, so you can eat WHILE you shop. Youre getting crumbs everywhere.

(that was my to my mom)



SHERYLDS Posts: 12,180
9/3/13 7:05 A

when I hear an obese person say: " they don't care about their weight "
I'm happy that they accept themselves...because self esteem is critical for a healthy mind, but at the same time I don't really believe them, I think that they have just given up. To me it translates: "don't bother me about my weight"

Okay...now I'm going to run for cover emoticon

BLUENOSE63 SparkPoints: (101,558)
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9/3/13 6:52 A

When I see someone of that size, my first thought is often "How did they get so big" followed by "that was must be really uncomfortable".

GOALWTIN7 SparkPoints: (2,121)
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9/3/13 6:26 A

I feel empathy just as I would with an alcoholic or dug addict. I feel they are so unhappy that they've given up on life and given themselves their own life sentence. I never think lazy or stupid. I only get upset when I see an obese kid because I was a very fat kid of 5 and I think it's parents being selfish and self centered to not do the best for their kids in healthy foods and getting them active. I don't care what an adult chooses for themselves but for a kid that has no choice what they are fed gets my blood boiling. Grammar school was hell being fat and I put myself on a diet without help from parents and was normal weight by 9th grade and stayed normal weight till late 30's. Memories of grammar school still haunts me.

TENNISJIM Posts: 10,290
9/3/13 5:55 A

I don't think about them

LILLITH32 SparkPoints: (9,151)
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9/3/13 5:40 A

There were a few studies done on cultural effects of obesity; one dealt with employment, another one with college acceptance. Apparently, overweight/obese people are less likely to get a job; this is even more profound for women! The second study showed a similar bias for students undergoing application process for Grad school, with almost no obese females making through the interview. The difference for males was a lot smaller. Our society tends to judge, and it judges women more harshly then men. Unfair, but, facts of life.

JESSAELINN SparkPoints: (17,454)
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9/3/13 12:49 A

I think given our upbringing, the media, the reactions we've heard from others in the public, all of us have a first few seconds of thought as a reaction, wether we want to or sometimes wether we realize it or not. Honestly? I do. I wish I didn't. But only because I have seen how one of my family members treats her body and I can see that it can be controlled better by her actions. But, not any one single person portrays every other overweight person in the world!! Sometimes it is related to a serious health issue that is hard to identify. Some just can't afford to go through a lot of testing and medications to identify or correct those health issues. In the end, that is how I really try to think of others, instead of dwelling on my first reaction.

PEACEFULONE SparkPoints: (73,063)
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9/3/13 12:38 A

Don't judge people

JANIEWWJD SparkPoints: (240,587)
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9/2/13 11:39 P

I try not to judge, because I, in turn, could also be judged. All of us have our perfections and imperfections.

LADYCJM SparkPoints: (34,714)
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9/2/13 11:31 P

It's okay SheryLDS, I'll duck with you. I think the same thing. The parent is passing on the same bad eating habits and lack of exercise that the parent has. I look in he grocery cart and think "Why are they being 3 bags of chips and arguing about how many bags of cookies to buy?"

Am I being judgmental? Yep
Do I know what they are going thru, what hardships they face? Nope
Am I being kind and loving towards my neighbor? Nope
Should I try to be better? Yep
If I keep my mouth shut and my expression neutral or pleasant than I'm not hurting them, just myself by not being as nice as I would like to be.

ETHELMERZ SparkPoints: (93,621)
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9/2/13 8:39 P

I think, "that person has the chronic disease of obesity, but, unlike alcoholics and drug users, it all shows on the outside of their bodies " And when I see someone really skinny, I think "that poor person is either dying, or starving themselves", and in a few years, they aren't going to look healthy either, because that kind of thing is too hard to keep going, life long.

SHERYLDS Posts: 12,180
9/2/13 8:32 P

I agree with LADYCJM
anything that is visible leaves an impression on us based on our experience.

I would also add (to my peril....please dp not kill me)
that when I see an obese mother with a young obese child...I feel bad for the kid, because I ASSUME the child has learned bad eating habits from the mother.

Okay, now I'm going to duck for cover before the barrage of hate mail hits me emoticon

LADYCJM SparkPoints: (34,714)
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9/2/13 8:09 P

If we are honest we will all admit that we all judge everyone we see..

We judge based on weight, clothing, tattoos, hair styles, behaviors, anything that is visible. And depending on our backgrounds, experiences and prejudices is whether or not that judgment is going to be positive or negative.

I think that we tend to be more negative in our judgment of others. Who hasn't looked in someone else's grocery cart and thought how can they buy that garbage food? Or thought what a terrible parent someone was because their kid is behaving like a demon in the store Or how can someone really wear that out in public?

I think that in general that really fat people are judged more negatively. I think they are less likely to be hired and less likely to be promoted. I think that it's going to get worse when healthcare is mandated for everyone. If you think that a fat person is more likely to have diabetes and high blood pressure that will lead to a stroke or heart attack do you really want to hire them and risk the increase in your business costs?

Is it right? Is it fair? No. But am I right? yeah, I think I am.

HABERGIN Posts: 6
9/2/13 7:45 P

During my journey to become healthy I was surprised at how ignorant I am concerning food. Up until I forced myself to become educated, I had no idea how horrible I actually ate. What I knew about food consisted of what was taught in 8th grade health in the 90's and random junk that is published in Women's Health or Cosmo.
Now I am trying to be an informed eater, understanding all the ingredients in the food I consume and the effects it has on my body.
Here is the south obesity is the norm for many. I am wondering if the main reason is the lack of information provided to us. If it was more widely known that diet soda kills brain cells or the ingredient L-cysteine used in making bread is human hair, duck feathers or hog hair. Would we still consume them?

TACDGB Posts: 6,132
9/2/13 7:30 P

I try to leave that judging up to God....I just pray for them and hope that they want better for them selves. I do understand as I have been fat too. I would never call them fat as I feel I can only say that about myself.

JBALDWIN29 SparkPoints: (65,560)
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9/2/13 7:01 P

I try not to judge people. I feel if someone is overweight they have a reason for it, I am not going to make assumptions or ridicule another person for their looks.

BIISHO Posts: 3,330
9/2/13 6:48 P

Well... I usually just assume they have emotional issues, like.. they must be depressed and they just need some help... I actually feel bad for them but I never think they're lazy or stupid. Even when I see fat people in McDonalds eating tons of junk food I just think things like "oh :( she/he must be really sad and lonely"... I'm not even sure why I think that lol maybe it's because that's the reason I was fat so I just assume the rest of the world is exactly like me :S

FENWAYGIRL18 Posts: 5,855
9/2/13 6:45 P

I first feel bad because I know what it's like to be really overweight and to have people look at you a certain way , treat you different and laugh at you. I never think that they have an eating problem because I don't know the person.
I'm sure at my biggest people thought I must sit home all day eating chips or something when that couldn't be further from the truth, I have trouble exercising because of health problems , PAIN!!!!!!! Every since the fibromyalgia and chronic lyme disease I can't do what I use to and it's frustrating and disappointing to someone who was once active.
I always say a little prayer for someone I see that is really chubby ( won't say the words obese or morbidly obese when describing someone those are very hurtful words).....
Sometimes its not cause a person doesn't want to exercise it's cause they physically can't, so I don't judge anyone because I don't want to be judged.
Would I hire a person who has weight on, of course just because a person is overweight doesn't mean they aren't smart and can't do the job.
I'm so sick of the stigma of everyone should be a stick a size zero, do you know most men like a woman with meat on them? Not many men like very thin women, they'd rather have curves so I don't know why the advertising agencies , models are made to feel like they have to be a size zero.
A woman is beautiful for what is on the inside just like a man, there are more beautiful people that have weight on them not only on the outside but in the inside.... I find that usually the person that has some weight on them are funny and have great personalities and that the more thinner people are usually very self absorbed and cranky... just my experiences...

FANNISHMOM Posts: 229
9/2/13 4:39 P

What do I think when I see someone like that? I think that could be me if I don't get a handle on things now. That is my mom, my sister, my aunt. I think about how hard it is for them just to get up and do the things they need to do.

It is very hard for someone to understand what it is like to be that big. I'm just about 70 pounds overweight and it's hard for me to understand. Just walking is difficult -- my mom and my aunt have both had their knees replaced -- so the idea of exercise is like a dream. When you do manage to lose weight, there is always more to loose and it is very disheartening. My mom had the original bypass surgery which didn't work and required a stomach stapling to "fix" it. She's done optifast AND she had the new version of the bypass. She's smaller than she was, but she's not at a healthy weight.

Most people don't get what it's like and our society is generally fine with treating "fat" people as a joke. I saw a commercial the other night for a "clean" comedy show and the one joke they showed in the add was a fat joke. I can understand hiring someone who is more fit for a job that requires more physical work, but you will find that if a fat person and a skinny person go up for a secretarial job, odds are good, the skinny one will get the job because it is all about appearances.

Sorry if I went a little rant-y, but this is a big red button for me. : )

LOUNMOUN Posts: 1,308
9/2/13 4:37 P

I judged people more harshly without realizing it when I was judging myself harshly. I would have thought negative things about their size just like I thought bad things about me for gaining weight. When I started focusing on having more positive feelings toward myself I noticed that I saw other people more positively too.

At this point, I feel that you can't tell how someone gained weight just from a glance. I don't think their size says how intelligent they are or how hard they work. I do know that it is hard to weigh more in many ways and it can be very hard to lose weight.

If I were hiring for a job and the person were neat in appearance (clothing & hygiene), communicated well and were qualified then I would hire that person.


LOVEXAVIE SparkPoints: (30,453)
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9/2/13 4:12 P

I feel empathy.
I've been normal & heavy, at my heaviest weighing about 50 lbs more than now (I am back to normal now - thank you Sparks!).

So I know how hard it can be to get around at my old weight, let alone someone who was very obese. More over, I feel for how they may feel emotionally in the course of the day to day: people being snarky...making comments....laughing....or on the flip side, just being invisible.

Then as now, I look at them and wish them the best. And I make sure to smile and have eye contact or exchange a pleasantry if appropriate. Because the rest of the world seldom will.

It just bugs me, but fat seems to be the last area that people feel free to make fun of and berate people for. There are so many worse traits to have! But because fat is so visible, it's an easy, cheap target.

There's some commercial for a movie out now (I forget the name) where the coach screams a call out to a kid on the baseball team for being fat. Really? And they put this in the commercial supposedly to get people to see their movie?? That's supposed to make us all guffaw and want to shell out ten bucks? Um, no.

So no, I don't make the assumptions as I know there can be a whole host of reasons why people do what they do. People manage their lives in different ways. Maybe you don't "see" the normal weight person late at night in their home, downing three glasses of wine.
But you can't miss the fat person. At the end of the day, I guess we're all working out our way in life. We rarely truly know what goes on in another's life.

In terms of employment, if the job requires actions that a heavy person could not do then the employer has to go for the better suited candidate. May sound cold but that's just biz. So yes, an obese person will generally have more limitations on employment opportunity, depending on their chosen field.




SHERYLDS Posts: 12,180
9/2/13 3:16 P

I am glad you opened this thread

Do I think fatness signals a sign of weakness in a person? To me it Suggests the person may have a problem with food issues: lots of bad choices, maybe emotional eating, maybe a lot of bingeing. In the back of my mind...I think probably a sedentary lifestyle. Could it be illness or genetics as a contributing factor...sure. But that's not the first impression in my mind.

Would you be less likely to hire a fat person? If I ran a company that was service oriented and required a lot of movement, I'm sure I would consider a more physically fit candidate. Waitress, fitness instructor, mail person, loader. I would Assume the obese candidate would not be able to endure the level of physical activity required.

Do you feel empathy whenever you see a really overweight person, or do you think they are lazy or stupid (even if you know that iswrong, and immediately dismiss the notion soon after you think it)? I don't think obese people are intellectually any less qualified than other people. But I it does give me the impression that they may be less physical active than they need to be...I don't necessarily equate that with lazy. There are all types of reasons someone may have a sedentary lifestyle not of their own choosing.

Do I have empathy...of course I do. Obesity is a tough issue and our society hasn't figured out a clear way to prevent it, solve it, or deal with the attitudes in general. The current push for dealing with obesity has been driven by the $$$ it is costing because of the medical issues related to obesity.


Edited by: SHERYLDS at: 9/2/2013 (15:28)
JASMINEMARS Posts: 133
9/2/13 2:24 P

When you see a fat person out in public (not mildly chubby, but having a serious weight issue), what do you think about them? Do you immediately draw some conclusions about that person (automatic assumptions, even if you know they are wrong)? Do you think fatness signals a sign of weakness in a person? Would you be less likely to hire a fat person? Do you feel empathy whenever you see a really overweight person, or do you think they are lazy or stupid (even if you know that iswrong, and immediately dismiss the notion soon after you think it)?
My husband and I drove past Barnes and Noble recently, and there was a huge lady that crossed the street in front of us. She couldn't walk well. My husband made a comment that she was a monster. That bothers me, because I am overweight. I am wondering to what extent people think bad thoughts about very overweight people in the first few seconds of meeting or seeing them.

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