The Fat Child Complex

Fat shaming, skinny shaming, fit shaming and just about any form of shaming is the norm these days.

Fat/skinny/fit are hugely subjective and very very influenced by what people have been through as children.


Pihu was this little cute girl who weighed 32kgs when she was 5 years old. Just for context, a 5 year old child could weigh about 25kg and be in the obese category. So 32kg was really big.

Here’s the thing, she was really cute, the pulling cheeks cute, the squishy kid with too many chins and extremely round. People loved her.

Puberty hit her early. Maybe because of the weight. At 11 years, she had been menstruating for 2 years already, couldn’t make Head or tail of her body and suddenly she wasn’t the kid who adults came up to cuddle.

Everybody without exception advised her and her parents that she should lose weight.

She was huge, getting bigger by the day and of course with sub zero self esteem.

But here was the thing, she was great at math. Loved them numbers, devoured books on the subject at an alarming rate and always shone in any activity that required her to use her brain.

The world thought- so she’s fat ergo no social life, obviously she will study! Nothing else to do right?

Sadly, Pihu thought this of herself too. Because as kids we think of ourselves what others think of us. As adults too. So in spite of being the smartest kid, she felt like she didn’t belong.

Today, Pihu is 35 years old. She’s at a healthy weight. It has taken her 20 years to come to terms with her metabolism and the way her body works. She’s fit today, she swims and runs effortlessly, she lifts weights, she eats well and yet. Yet she doesn’t fit into somebody else’s definition of “fit”.

Pihu is still extremely critical of her body. She never wants to be the fat child again. She teaches Math at a leading university in India and yet her day is successful only when she has been able to walk 10000 steps in the day and kept well under 1300 calories.

Society at large will always have something to say and it’s easy to victimise on weight/ appearance because people don’t think that they have the right to feel beautiful enough.

That you somehow have to justify it. Even before fingers are pointed to us, we have already singled ourselves out as the fattest/ fittest/ skinniest in the room.

You know how to get over what others say about you- change your narrative of yourself.

Eat healthy, workout as per your time, give yourself priority and stop believing in low waisted size zero jeans.

As your self narrative changes, your visual will evolve. You will be more confident, you will walk taller and you will be stronger.

It takes time and love to change that narrative and time & love from yourself to yourself.

Everything else is logistics if you’ve worked out your body and your spirit.

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