Thursday, October 18, 2012

Hating Fat People

I always feel a little weird writing about what I'm about to write about.  I never know the place of things people tell me and how they fit into this whole blog thingy.  It's never my intention to make readers dislike someone in my life, I just feel like it's important to share real life experiences that happen to me, things you might not expect and my thoughts and reactions when things like this happen.  Maybe you can relate to what I'm about to share or maybe it will help you realize some of the things you might say in your life.  I've stuck a foot or two into my own mouth, none of us are exempt from that I'm sure.  Again, I am not fishing for any sort of negative reactions here, I love my family, I'm just sometimes amazed at the things that come out of peoples' mouths.

I don't even remember what we were talking about, the four of us driving back from dinner last night.  On Wednesday nights we have dinner with my inlaws and we had just finished a delicious Italian dinner and were heading home.

FIL: You know what I hate.  That woman in the new Wendy's commercials.  She is a large woman.  She does not make a good spokesperson. When people look at her they don't want to eat at fast food. 

Brian tried explaining that the woman was Dave Thomas's daughter and Dave Thomas used to do ads for Wendy's and was very popular and successful but it wasn't really working.

FIL:  McDonalds doesn't do that, you think that clown is the owner of McDonalds?

I don't even know if my FIL realized how insulting and demoralizing it felt to be the "large woman" in the backseat of the car.  I don't think he meant to hurt my feelings, but he did.

I tried finding something that said that Dave Thomas was too fat to be a spokesperson for Wendy's but only Wendy popped up and the comments regarding her looks were excruciating to read.  When did we become this society that thinks it's okay to be so pissed off at women that aren't what society considers as hot.  Dave Thomas supposedly did over 800 commercials and people loved them.  This is a woman issue.  I think it follows along with the news lady who got the hate email about her size.  I was going to write about her but I felt like everyone did a much better job talking about that and I had nothing to add, but in this case I was right there in the back of the car while it was happening, he was talking about me, whether he knew it or not.

I wanted to crawl in a ball and be invisible.  Did I go home and throw up my dinner and do jumping jacks until I fell over?  No, I did not.  I watched television and ate Halloween candy, felt like a shit, like I don't matter in the world.  Thank you Reece Cups.  My own personal heroin.

I certainly now know my FIL hates fat women, for the sake of being fat, and I now know what he thinks every time he looks at me.

This is what Wendy looks like:

She probably wears a size 12 or 14.  That's like my goal.  I think she's cute and I think her ads aren't anything to be annoyed about in any way.  I also tend to think most of America looks like her and maybe it would be nice to see folks on television who look like you.  

Along with the real Wendy ads they also use a younger, thinner redhead for other Wendy's ads along with the slogan, "Now that's better."  I guess this is supposed to be a dig at McDonalds but considering they only use that slogan for the skinny redhead and not the real Wendy, I feel like it's kind of a dig at overweight Wendy, intentional or not, who knows.  I just don't understand why the slogan wouldn't be used for both ads.


  1. I am curious what size your in laws and husband and extended family on that side are - ? Are these in shape people who don't carry excess weight, are careful about what they eat, exercise regularly, etc - ?

    Will be back to comment more after answer.

  2. Both Brian and my FIL have type 2 diabetes. He is very careful about eating sugar. Because of his medical history a stroke over 2 years ago and a heart attack over a year ago, it's very important that he exercises, in his case walks regularly, or very quickly it's very obvious his mobility is impacted. He appears to be a hearty eater, besides watching sugar, he eats whatever he wants. I've seen his weight fluctuate but luckily since moving here, he's been a very good weight, which again he needs or he's in trouble getting around. MIL is size L, pretty sedentary but spry. SIL should be writing this blog, not me, she works very hard to keep her weight down, I can tell it's an effort for her, and a daily struggle, and it's very admirable. I guess she's a size L or XL. BIL lives a very healthy lifestyle, he's thin and muscular, and works for it goes to the gym regularly, eats very healthy. Brian wears a 36, which I think is the perfect guy size, I like a little meat. Brian pretty much eats whatever he wants and if his suits start to get tight he cuts back for a week or two and drops weight very fast. He works out a couple times a week, basketball is his favorite.

  3. Wondered if by "watching sugar" you meant candy type things, because sugar is anything with carbs (which is nearly everything) and diabetics have to watch fat just as carefully, so was confused by the "anything he wants" part, but that is another topic.

    So from what you wrote, the real Wendy isn't much different of a size from some of your family.

    Very interesting that he made that comment then.

    I looked and Wendy is my exact age (51) and I think she has aged pretty well.

    So I guess there is not only the size difference between the two women in the ads, but also age.

    My observation in families is that they just sort of think - that's Ann - and do not really think of size. I realize that is not always true, but I think in some families they just don't think about it.

    So I think often, they just do not think about what they are saying, because they do not make the connection.

    I also think people on TV fall into different categories. Like men will yell at football players over something they do, when the men themselves are barely past mobile.

    I thought of example from my own family-
    My mother is married to someone who is twenty years older, has had both legs amputated(diabetes and he is in the 80% of type 2's where it is totally avoidable) is balding, is in nursing home.

    My mom was talking about her hair one day. She said that she was thinking of letting it go naturally gray (stop coloring it). And he had a fit. He likes being married to a "young chick".

    I sat there thinking - REALLY? No legs and no hair and she can't be GRAY?

    1. I love your anecdote.

      Yes, the focus is on sugar, and not really anything else. I'm not sure the back story, maybe he has a sweet tooth and getting the sugar free cookies helps that urge.

      I think there have been some weight comments made in the past to the girls in the family, not often but enough that I can tell it stings. I think you may be right about just thinking of so and so as that person. I feel guilty and targeted more than I should probably. It's hard to get out of that mind set when it's been that way your whole life. And "hate" is such a strong word. I dislike her, maybe she's not the best spokesperson for Wendy's but I HATE HER is just a bit strong.

  4. Have you ever read Regan Chastain's book "Fat: The Owner's Manual"? I found it entirely empowering... it's about how to stop apologizing for your size, and how to pursue health.

    Blessings! and sorry about your FIL :(

    1. I haven't. I need to check that out.