I Spy. . .

People who have weight issues play lots of games. The calorie game. The eating in public game. The game of space called Can I Fit?. The most interesting game is Fattest Person in the Room.

This is one thing that I feel the need to acknowledge but not necessarily deprogram. It’s important for my sanity.

How to play:

First, one must be in a room or gathering with a limited amount of people. Generally, social interaction must be expected between the people, but this is not always the case.

Then there’s a flow-chart. Mine is probably different than someone who is heavier, or male, or thinner, or shaped differently. My flowchart goes like this.

Am I the fattest person in the room? If yes, end, if no, continue.
Am I the fattest female in the room? If yes end, if no, continue.
How many other women are fatter than me?

This game is important because I need to identify my “position”. Fat shaming happens. If physical activities are involved, I need to know when I’m likely to get picked for a team, or if I have to work extra hard to prove myself, or if I should just give up. If there’s discussion involved I need to analyse everything directed at me or said about me, especially jokes. When given roles I need to know if my weight is going to be the determining factor. Even if I’m not the fattest person in the room, I need to know my relationship to said fattest person. Are we friends? Because that means more judgement, fats flocking and all. Am I going to get lumped in with him/her no matter what? The lumped part is the worst. His or her incompetence becomes mine as well, no matter what. And I feel just as guilty because mine becomes theirs.

This game also helps let me know when to relax. If someone is fatter than me by a large margin, then I can consider myself mostly safe. If the person who is larger than me, even only slightly, is popular or friends with the rest of the group, or has some position of authority, it means that fat shaming will be less likely or less overt.

I feel like I should stop playing, but it’s become so automatic, I’m not sure if I could. And I’m not sure if I would even if I had that option. Part of having social skills is being socially aware. I know that there are reasons that I should stop. I know that this is judging other people and judging myself the way I don’t want to be judged. I know that if I ever do lose the weight I want to, this kind of game could become very toxic.

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February 19, 2010. Tags: . Reflection.

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