Friday, December 19, 2014

You Really Shouldn't Judge a Book By Its Cover....

I have been thinking a lot about my life lately.  Mainly because I have just embarked on a huge journey.   I am trying to get healthy and lose over half my body weight.  I need to tackle things that I have not dealt with that have caused me to gain so much weight by turning to food for comfort.  I need to work on the mental portion of my journey just as much as the physical portion if I want to be truly successful.
My last post I touched on the fact that I absolutely cannot stand body shaming.  I should have said body shaming and not just obesity shaming.  But the reason why I chose to say obesity shaming is because of the fact that, that is what I have experience in being on the receiving end of (because I am obese).  But regardless body shaming in any form should not be acceptable by anyone.  Discrimination is ridiculous especially in this day and age.  Stereotyping is for small minds.  Until you know someone's story why judge them?  What does that serve you?  There is always something behind the reason why someone ends up gaining a massive amount of weight.  You don't get to be 604 lbs because you are happy with life and everything is sunshine and rainbows.  Most people who are obese are not happy that they are obese and do not want to be obese.  I can speak from experience because contrary to stereotypes (this is why I absolutely hate them) I DON'T sit around eating all day, I DON'T eat fast food barely EVER.  Yes there are times when I have eaten it but I can answer with sincere honesty that in the past 6 months I have had fast food approximately 2 times. I have used food as comfort and also punishment because I couldn't deal with my emotions.  I couldn't handle anything and I didn't want men in particular to find my body attractive.

I have always been a big girl.  I started gaining weight around the age of 8 years old.  I also developed depression around the age of 8.  I was sexually assaulted and raped at the age of 8 by a neighbor who was 16.  I had denied and denied for years and even blacked out the rape.  I remembered the sexual abuse portion, but the rape, I could always only remember bits and pieces even now everything is not clear, it is like having pictures running through your head constantly.  A staircase, a basement, dark, fear. You try to push through the blurry parts of the memories to figure out exactly what happened only to find more blackness.  You feel disgusting.  This person who assaulted me ended up living with us for a period of time because his parents kicked him out of his house, and my parents felt bad for him because he was young.  So for a period of my life I lived in fear every single day.  Scared to go to sleep, scared to be alone.  Often my mother and father would leave us (myself and my 3 brothers) alone with him he would babysit us when my mother would have to go run errands and my father would have to sleep during the day because he worked the night shift at work.  I want to make clear that I DO NOT blame my parents what-so-ever because they couldn't have known.  When my Mom found out about the whole thing she was so upset and felt horrible.  My Dad wanted to kill him.  It is NOT their fault.  But the point I am trying to make is this asshole had ample opportunities to assault me.

This asshole took my innocence away.  He took my dignity, my self-worth and my happiness.  He left me an empty shell.  I remember that first time when he assaulted me, in my own room that was supposed to be my safe place and threatened me, told me that if I told anyone he would hurt me or my family.  One of the best days is when he left.  He stole my mother's diamond earrings and left, ran away.  Never in all my life was I happier.  Scared that he may show up again, but happy he had left.  From that point on I started eating, food was comforting. As I got older I kept eating, food was now a protectant.  If I was bigger I didn't have to worry about guys taking a second look at me.  Then I fell for my first boyfriend.  I remember feeling dirty just kissing him.  Feeling overwhelmed and suffocated when we were making out.  I ruined that relationship, kept eating and packing on the weight.  In high school kids were cruel, I got made fun of constantly.  I was not small and these kids used to stand at the end of the hallway and yell rude remarks as you would walk by in between classes or at lunch.  In classes kids would say rude things, make rude remarks.  I ended up not eating anything while I was at school.  I would not eat breakfast before school and then at lunch time didn't want to be seen eating at school so I wouldn't eat then, and when I got home and my mom would put dinner on the table I would pick through that.  Sometimes I would binge when I would get really upset, but I wasn't eating a lot most of the time.  My depression was horrible in high school and at one point was admitted into the hospital for trying to take a bottle of Advil.  I didn't want to live anymore and deal with the fact that I was disgusting on the outside and disgusting on the inside.  I loathed who I was.  When I finished high school my depression was not much better.  My eating habits had changed to the point where now I was not fasting and binging I was just binging, so my weight continued to rise.  For awhile I was doing well and going to the gym and eating really, really healthy.  I did lose some weight but not what I should have lost for what I was doing, around that time I was diagnosed with PCOS (Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome) and also I had been on antidepressants since I was around 10 that can cause weight gain as well.  But the eating was both a comfort and punishment.  I would eat to the point where I was stuffed so that I felt as disgusting as I felt inside.  I didn't want men looking at me, touching me, getting close to me.

Anyways to make a long story short....I ate my feelings.  Food was there, available and the only thing that comforted me when I needed something.  I spent so many years not talking about the abuse, not wanting to admit to the stuff even happening, just pretending it didn't happen, waiting for the feelings to go away.  But they never went away, they never do go away.  This is why I don't think that you should ever judge a book by its cover because until you know a person's whole really have no idea what they have been through.  I have said it likely a thousand times by now, and I will say it again now.  I didn't become 604 lbs by just eating because I "love" food or I want to be gluttonous, it was a source of comfort and punishment.

Maybe one day the stereotyping and cruelness against people of size will stop, but I highly doubt that because there will always be haters.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

With specialized counselling for the sexual trauma you experienced as a child, the feelings will go away. You're not stuck feeling those things forever. You can get through this!