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From: Dave
This is my story...

 

My memories of being a fat kid were both good and bad. I have a few good memories but a lot
were bad too. As a fat boy, you have to buy "husky" pants and kids used to tease me with that
name. I've been called all the fat names in the book and some that aren't I'm sure. All in all
it makes you lose any self esteem or self confidence. And when you're a kid, you don't know
any better, you keep eating because it's the only thing that makes you feel good. I'd have my
parents look at a grossly obese person and say "see you better lose weight before you become
like them." And I know they meant well and that they were right but it's such a pressure
on you. The boys in my classes at elementary school used to call me "fatty" and pick on me for
no reason. I usually would spend my time on the playground by myself or in a group of other
"outcasts." And I can't tell you how often I'd hear "you'd be so handsome and look so good if
only you'd lose about 50 pounds." And again all it did was make me eat more to, drown my sorrow
with food. In high school, I more or less kept to myself at first. My grades suffered, I was
depressed and I just ate and ate and ate. Finally, I enrolled in the "slow" class and learned
how to work smarter when it came to school and my grades improved. I still wasn't socially
"accepted" but I was now known as the "smart" fat kid. I never went to dances or school
functions, never went to homecoming or prom. I just couldn't ask anybody out, nor did I want to
dress up a body that wasn't "normal."

Now, I'm still heavy but I find myself acting as a guardian to my nieces and nephew, making
sure they don't end up being the fat kid and going through the same things I did. The pressures
of being a kid are tough, the taunts are endless; but being a fat kid is like going through it
twice.

 
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From: Anonymous
This is my story...

 

I don't really know when I became fat, but somewhere in elementary school I became the fat kid. It didn't help that I was also the kid with braces and glasses. Luckily I tried to hold my head high and ignore all of the taunts, but with a name like Hattie there is only so much you can ignore. I endured, "Fatty Hattie two by four, can't get through the kitchen door" and that wasn't just by the kids at school. My family could be just as cruel. My dad would say things like that to me all of the time. My mom would see a full-figured bride in the paper who wasn't very pretty and would say, "Well, there is still hope for you!". I spent a lot of my elementary years obsessing about food. What I would eat, when I would eat, how much I would eat, what it would taste like. I had friends amazingly and even boyfriends, so I don't guess I had it too bad, but I knew that I was fat and I hated that word...still do to be honest. I can remember wanting to wear certain clothes that were the in style and being told by the sales clerk, "Honey, we don't make them in your size." When I got to jr high I tried out for cheerleading, but I didn't make it. Later I heard some girls saying that I almost broke the floor when I did the jumps. That did it. I wouldn't eat. I decided that I wasn't going to be fat anymore. I just quit eating. If I ate I threw it up. I walked several miles a day and did sit-ups endlessly. Amazingly, my mother who is a nurse didn't see anything wrong and to this day (15 years later) still doesn't. I made myself thin. Suddenly boys thought I was gorgeous, everyone thought I was "it" and I could wear anything and you know what...I was still the same insecure person inside because of all the cruel remarks. I would only drink water all day, eat 1/2 of a baked potato without anything on it and then I would have to throw that up and then walk three miles and do 200 sit-ups each day. All because I was fat in my own eyes. Because of what I did to my body during that time I ended up having my gallbladder removed during my teen years. I also gained all the weight back and then some. The scars that will never heal though are the ones on the inside. I cringe every time I hear someone put a child down or call them fat...I guess I never will get over what that word and what it means to me has done to me.

 
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From: JumboJet
This is my story...

 

Well where to begin is difficult at best, Jumbo Jet as listed for my name is one I acquired in the 3rd grade when I was 9 or 10 years old. We all had nicknames and that was mine. I was the fun fat kid, I always laughed, always had a crowd around me, and I was always really lonely. I still am to this day. Being a fat kid, was hard, I see in the pictures when I was a little girl that I was pretty, then my mom got divorced and we lived on our own, and then a few years later she married, and the man that she married is my step dad, and I dearly love him, but he was an alcoholic, so henceforth , my mother became one too, and it always scared me to see them when they came home. They were never home during the day as they were at work, and they were never home in the evenings, and my mom would always leave us money for whatever every day in the summer, well of course we would buy sweets and candies, and after awhile I craved this stuff, and got bigger and bigger, it was the only time I did not feel lonely. My parents left us alone in the evenings late into the night when they were out drinking. My brother started drinking and drugging at age 14 or 15 and I was little miss perfect, except I was fat and getting more so. I had wonderful grades, and always did everything right, and never acted out. My "Dad" was mean about the fat, he always had some comment to make, and neither one of my parents ever said if they loved us or not, so we never knew. Being fat was my way I guess of protecting myself, and the food was comforting to me, hell it still is...The fat protected me from anyone hurting me again, I had been sexually molested by an older neighbor of ours at age 8 or 9, I can't really remember, but I know it was after that that I felt even more alone, and didn't know what to do with no parents around and a brother that was a slime. I went to school, did everything perfect, was always known for how good my grades were, and I always had a lot of people that hung around me, I even had a couple of boyfriends, and one that I truly loved and still do to this day, he is my best friend, and I found out about 5 years ago that he is gay, but he hasn't changed and he is still my best friend. He loves me no matter how fat I am, and I still can read in my yearbook, how jealous he was that I was getting married to someone else, and that I looked so great those days...because the summer prior to my senior year, I was so sad, and so angry with life, that I lost 60 pounds, all I did was eat peanut butter and bread sandwiches and drink water all summer long, and I rode my bike into town and walked like the dickens to get away from home. When I showed up for school for my senior year, my counselor thought that I was anorexic, my parents never even noticed, because they were not around, and I was made to go to the doctor, but I was ok...I stayed thin until I got married, guess to whom??? a man that was as cold and as distant as my father and a drinker too, surprise not...and we married right after I graduated from High school, he was 11 years older than I was, and my parents supported it, they didn't tell me I should go to college and get a career first, they actually even paid for the wedding...then I had children and then he left, after he left, that lonely feeling went away after I went through a couple of years of counseling, and then I began to loose the fat. I am still fat today, and not very many people are nice about it, but it is me, and I tell people that if they don't like it that is their problem. I was in another relationship for about 3 years, and guess what, abusive...and during and after that one I gained even more weight, so guess what? That layer of fat is still protecting me, and I am still fat, but I am fit, I walk, I work out, and I am a beautiful person, have many dear friends, still no one special enough for a relationship to keep, but I know I am a good person now after years of telling myself that I was no good cause I was fat, and because some man sexually abused me, and I never had the guts to tell anyone...and I ate the pain, as most kids do, especially when their parents are not there for them to talk to and are not there to love them, and do so willingly and openly...From my marriage, I have 2 really beautiful kids that are tall and skinny, and I have raised them right, and they hear every day that I LOVE THEM, and they have nutritional meals, and snacks within reason, not TOO MUCH free time on their hands, and we have a rule of at least once a day no matter what, we have a sit down family meal. If nothing else, my being a fat kid and going through what I had to go through aka the abuse, and the distant parents, bad relationships....I have done ONE THING, I have STOPPED the CHAIN with my children..........and I am proud of that. Thanks for letting me ramble. I appreciate this site so much. Cat you are super!

 
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From: lesa
This is my story...

 

I happened upon this web site and was stunned at the picture of the little girl in the pink tutu. She could have been me. I'm obese, by even the most generous standards, and I've been obese since about 7 or 8. I've seen pictures of me at 5 or 6 with my thin, gorgeous cousin, and my legs and body are just as small as hers. I don't know what happened. I think maybe food was used as a reward in my household. It was the way we were shown affection, without any affectionate words being spoken. Those times I was given snacks was the only direct attention I got. The snacks came from my dad, who is also obese. So maybe I associate food with rewards. I only know it tastes good, and I'm apparently missing the mechanism in my brain that tells me "you're full." I found it once, though. Through phen-fen, the wonder drug. Using phen-fen, I went from 248 pounds to 174 pounds in about six months. Oh, you couldn't believe how much nicer people treated me. I went home for a family reunion, and you'd have sworn I'd won the lottery. Mom was full of compliments, and so was dad. My brother, who at one time hung pictures of fat people all over the fridge as a deterrent, was raving about me. I was feeling good and exercising, too. The weight just fell off. Then they pulled it, and my world caved in. The weight, all of it, came back within four months, and I suffered the additional blow of being the one who "lost so much weight only to gain it all back again - what's wrong with her!!!" Now I'm back in my huge body, and I can't stop eating because I never get full, and because it all tastes so good. I've given up. I just make some attempts to be kind to my body, but they don't result in any concrete changes. The worst of it is that I got married last year to a wonderful guy (whom I met during the phen-fen period, of course) and now that I'm huge again, I feel I've cheated him. He deserves someone else. I'm a failure at life, love, and everything else that counts. All because of my inability to stop eating. I would gladly take phen-fen again, even if there was a 50/50 probability that I'd develop heart problems. Weighing 174 was the only time in my life I recall feeling even remotely human and a little attractive. I know I'm pretty, but who can see it with my fat face and huge fat rolls dripping off me? It's a sad way to live. Being fat is something I don't want, but can't fight it. I've considered getting my stomach stapled, but I know I'd just get hungry and eat until I burst every single stitch. I don't want to judge others or tell them how to live, but for me, fat is not working. It's unhealthy and it damn sure isn't attractive! I see pictures of myself on my wedding day and just cringe. I don't look pretty - I look inflated and puffy. It's just sad.

 
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From: Meredith Beck
This is my story...

 

What I am is what you see,
What you see is what I am,
If you don't like it let me be,
cause what you see is ME.

I might be fat, or as big as a tree,
but all I know is that this is me,
I might not be skinny or even tall,
But I have feelings like you all,
I cry at night,
When there is no food in sight,
With all of my might I try to fight,
But this urge to eat can never be BEAT,
Because I am me and what I eat.


 
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From: Bob
This is my story...

 

I was a fat kid -
Well, at least while I was growing up. I, too, learned to bear the burdens and stigmas that society attaches to "fat" people for a relatively brief, but formative period in my life.

As happens to many of us as we approach and pass through puberty or other growth spurts as a child, I found myself becoming one of the "fat kids" at about 5th grade and stayed in that group until about my freshman year of high school. During that period, I became acutely aware of what it meant to be singled out, sometimes shunned, sometimes made the butt of jokes and pranks, and acquainted with the cruelty that my "normal" classmates could sometimes exercise, just to make sure that I knew my place in the pecking order of adolescent society.

I also learned the limitations of adult society as well. Grownups could be insensitive or just stupid about what they they might say to me or my parents. I learned that adults did not always consider a fat kid's needs to belong to his peer group at this age important at all as I ended up with "fat kids" clothes, which in the 1950s, were rather obviously different and styles compared to what our classmates might choose as the "in" thing to be accepted. From many different quarters the inherent message was that "chubbys" or "Fattys" were marginal members of society, at best. As long as we knew our place as defined by the "majority", we could be tolerated, but not always welcomed into the mainstream.

As anyone who has lived through early adolescence knows, difference from the norm can be a painful isolation, or at the very least, a source of real frustration. Many folks would not see you as worthy, capable, or desirable to be associated with. If you are lucky, as I think I was, you learn to cherish the friends and relationships that are offered you without the prejudice or reservation. And, if you are lucky, you have a nurturing from somewhere - at home, school, friends, somewhere. A nurturing that sees past the limitations or difference imposed by the lotteries of life.

I was lucky enough to have had some good friends and adults who accepted me for who I was, and a family who did the same. I consider my parents to have been pretty remarkable people for their time and probably outside the mainstream of American values in their ability to set an example of tolerance and genuine acceptance of all sorts of people into their lives. Some of that unconditional love helped me to realize that although society and my classmates might not have the capacity to include me, there were people who did and who worked at it. These were, and still are, the people I seek, regardless of the situation I may find myself in or the lot that Life draws for me from time to time.

I eventually grew out of being a "fat kid". But as I changed, I realized that the same forces of ignorance, exclusion, and petty assumptions were alive and well, regardless of the targeted issue. The discriminations now arose from different issues than just body size or shape, but frankly the source was the same - a mindless conformity, a heartless insecurity. Had I not gone through my "fatty" period and when I did, I might not have coped as well, or had my values strengthened when more adult transgressions against decency, tolerance, humanity, intelligence, and yes, even Love were to rear their ugly heads.

It may seem odd to some, but I see a lot of positive things with wide ranging good for the soul that came to me from this experience. I think it made me stronger in ways my unchallenged peers may have never considered. It at least taught me something of human hurtfulness and of human acceptance and compassion; something about finding true value in others, and applying those lessons in shaping my own character and relations with others. It has been a road less traveled, but has made all the difference in my experience since.

 
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From: A mother feeling like a failure
This is my story...

 

My daughter is going to be six in one week. Today she weighted in at 85 pounds. As a mother and someone she looks at for support, I feel like a failure. I feel I am killing my little girl. I have had her to a weight doctor, watched her calories, bought her exercise videos and still through it all I have managed to give her that extra piece of candy when she asked. When she said, "Mommy, I'm hungry", I was the one that gave her that extra something. As I sit here writing this, I am crying because I don't want my little girl to be fat! I am so angry at the world for putting so much pressure on people to be skinny! I myself take diet pills everyday because when I was in school I was called fat and it messed me up for life. I cannot let myself gain weight because I remember the names, and how I felt. I told myself I would NEVER have a fat child. My daughter would be small and petite. Well, I have news for you, my daughter is not petite-she is very overweight for her age. I do not love her any less for her size. I hurt for her when I hear kids at school call her fat. I want to help her, but it is so hard to do this on my own. My husband is overweight and does not help on watching her food intake. I feel so alone on my attempt to get her to lose weight. If there is any suggestions please Email me at MAX3567@cs.com. As I end this ,tomorrow I will clean out the cabinets again, start going for walks with her and pray to God for help. I love her very much and want to help her ,but I really don't know what to do. I am so tired of all this ,I just want her to be a happy child that doesn't have to worry how much she weights, or if she can eat that, or if she will be accepted. This is my story, thank you for taking the time to hear me. DG

 
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From: Bill
This is my story...

 

It all started in Autumn,1979; while I was a member of a prep league football team. The target weight for all
players was 75lbs.-not a pound more, not a pound less. Yes, my weight has fluctuated if not dramatically at the time. Furthermore, I was not patronized about my excess weight from others until the football season
was over; after which was roughly the starting point of my yo-yo dieting span that endured for several years. I was like 9-1/2 years old within the aforementioned beginning. Throughout subsequent years, not
even friends nor relatives have been supportive examples to me. They all have been gung-ho believers in
weight loss via physical fitness. At the standpoint of my parents' divorce around my 11th birthday, things
have become more tasteless for me. First off, my mother has been wanting to enroll me into a private Christian school, which I did despise to the fullest extent. Yes, the majority of students & faculty have comp-
raised of the ever-arrogant & ever-patronizing thin-oriented society. I was obviously ridiculed by those from both sides of the coin. I hardly ever participated in any extracurricular activities because of this. The
part I despised most was P.E.. The instructor himself was so military-oriented, he literally made me perform more repetitions of fitness drills & relays than the remaining class whenever times were appropriate. During my senior year of the same school, my teacher called my mom up behind my back regarding senior
trip reservations for a Caribbean cruise after I turned down the opportunity. The moment I was notified about the reservations made without my approval, I literally blew my top off to both my mom & my teacher.
Although I have aggressively demanded my name to be removed from the list, the chaperones insisted to
patronize me in working out at the gym aboard the ship. However, I simply refused; especially since my senior year in high school was insurmountably hectic, so I was obviously entitled to relaxation. I was patronized even more when the entire class was at the restaurant. I was having generous helpings of even the most fattening foods(i.e.:pancakes with strawberries/whipped cream, French toast, fried chicken, shrimp cocktail, ice cream & blueberry pie.). The moment I graduated, I vowed to myself never to in-
volve myself into any school reunions of any kind.
Today, however, is still an era for me to really be myself without yield to size or weight. I was actually brought to the realization back in early 1994 as I discovered NAAFA; an organization that actually helped
my self-esteem & persuaded me to finally egress from the carousel of yo-yo dieting. I am now keeping my chin up more than ever!

 
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From: Will
This is my story...

 

I'm really not sure how to describe my childhood. I've looked back at pictures from when I was 2 or 3 and thinking, "I was skinny." Throughout elementary school, I was always the biggest kid in class, both in weight and height. I don't remember much teasing from my peers, although I remember one day I was drinking a Diet Coke and this girl said "William's on a diet!" But, I don't remember getting much crap about being fat since I never looked overly large, due to my height. However, I think the change came between 6th and 7th grade. I remember being 5'9" and weighing 180 lbs. I always had to wear adult sized clothes, but I had the right inseam length. I started lifting weights, but then I started gaining weight. I think part of this came from moving from the city where I had all my friends and my basketball leagues, to the country, where I was far away from everyone else. My weight skyrocketed and the next thing I knew, I weighed 253 at the beginning of Jr. High Football. Unfortunately, I didn't try to get in shape and didn't play much in 7th grade. In 8th grade, I had only gained 10 more pounds, plus I had increased my strength, so I played quite a bit. In fact, we won the state Jr. High championship, so I was happy. At least I thought I was. I didn't have many social skills with the opposite sex, plus, since I lived way out in the country and had parents that didn't interact with many people, especially in our community, I ended up staying home, never going anywhere. I began to get taunts from classmates, but they never bugged me much. I did get jumped one day after school for saying I was going to participate in an intramural basketball tournament, but I think it was partly racial. Everything was ok until high school. That's when everything began to hit. Sex, popularity, power, money, drinking... Playing football for a school that was an annual state power was very stressful. Of course, I was put on a strict diet and heavy exercise schedule after I crested the 300 lbs mark after Christmas. I lost 40 lbs over the spring and was soon bench pressing 300lbs, but it wasn't good enough, even at 14. My ROTC instructor tried to get me to take phen-fen, but my mother refused. My coaches kept chiding me about foot speed and weight, but I just couldn't handle it anymore. Shortly into the next season, I quit playing football and working out. Within a year, I had shot past the 300lbs. mark again. I just didn't care. My weight was stable, school was going ok, and I had a girlfriend (my first). Then, suddenly, my girlfriend and I broke up in a very horrible manner, school began to crash like a building falling over, and I began to crack up. I ended up having to transfer schools my senior year to a small private school where all the senior boys ran cross-country since they weighed maybe 160 at the max. I did come out of "retirement" to play football again, but I just didn't care this time. As it came time for college interviews, my mother began to chide me heavily about my weight. Even though she herself is obese, I was still the "lazy good-for-nothing dumb fatass" and it didn't matter that she would eat a sack full of fast food, topped off by 2 bags of chocolate covered peanuts, I was still the one that made it difficult for everyone because I ate her "almost out of house and home!" Now that I'm away at college (on full academic and music scholarship without her having to pay for anything since I wait tables on the weekends) I just don't care. I still have plenty of dates (whenever I have time for them) and don't hear much taunting. (I just flex my muscular 20-inch biceps and they shut up) My mother still chides me about my weight, but now it's just for health reasons (even though I have better blood pressure and cholesterol readings than most of my skinny friends- and I can wait tables for 8 hours at a time standing on my feet and still dance all night long!) I'll let her keep up the charade for awhile, but the moment it gets ugly, I'm cutting myself off from her. I've already done it once, and I still keep a distance. She knows that next time I might do it forever.

 
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From: Anonymous
This is my story...

 

I am a fat child. Every time I go on the scale I see those frightening numbers 2-0-1. Yes I weigh 201 lbs. It is sad for a child who is only 11 years old. I get called fatty, fatso and tub o lard. Sure I get hurt but its scary when I get hurt because some of the people who call me names are pretty fat themselves. I Am a male and I have big breasts. Terrible. Just Terrible.

 
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From: Reply to "Anonymous"
This is my story...

 

I just read the story from "Anonymous" on the page marked "others", and I felt really bad for him. When I was his age, I was a big kid , too. Anonymous, if you are reading this, I hope it makes you feel a little better that there is someone who knows how you feel. I grew up to be successful in business and I have a beautiful girlfriend. When you grow up and get into the real world, people don't care about your size nearly as much as when you're a kid. Start doing some activities you like and playing some sports, and you will be surprised how easy it is to lose a few extra pounds. Good Luck :)

 
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From: Mr. X
This is my story...

 

Over the years, I've realized that being overweight causes you to miss out on so many good things in life. Between all the jokes and the insults that I've gotten lashed at me over the years by many different people, I've had my self confidence greatly reduced. There was one time when I was in sixth grade (I was about 11 years old) and I was swinging on the swing set with my friend. All of the sudden, a kid who I had not even spoken to ever in my life walks up to me and says: "Hey fat boy, have another Twinkie!!". The boy then ran off, and on top of that, my friend sitting on the swing next to me started to laugh at me. When I was in 7th grade, my friend and I were walking home from school and were encountered by two other kids. The kids, who we didn't even know, began insulting my friend (he was made fun a lot as well, although he wasn't too fat, just kind of geeky). They then began to mock me. Supposedly, one of them saw me going on a walk with my older brother to get some exercise. These kids then said that I was desperately trying to get skinny and that I was too fat, blah blah blah, you get the gist of it. It just goes to show you how insensitive and immature kids can be, which causes them to be just plain mean. There have been several encounters like the ones I just talked about, some being worse and others being not so bad. The thing was on most of these occasions I was being made fun of by kids I didn't even know and sometimes by kids that I've never seen before. What hurt the most was being insulted by my family. On one occasion my mom got really mad at me, and in the midst of her yelling she shouted: "...and another thing, you're too fat!!!". My cousins, two in particular, have caused me to feel worse about my weight then anyone else. The thing is that I have always been so nice to them. I haven't given them any reason to get revenge on me in anyway, yet they have poked fun at me many times. The was one time where I was fiddling with my shorts, which had caused a snapping kind of sound. Then, one of my cousins joked: "Is that your bra strap?!". There was another time when I was staying at their house and some of my clothes where laying on the floor outside the room I was sleeping in. All of the sudden, I hear one of my cousins say: "Hey Curt, look at this." I then look over and see him holding my pants. It turns out they were laughing at how wide they were. These were some of several of their insults, and that doesn't even include all the times the have talked about me behind my back. I've tried to shrug my cousin's insults off, but I simply can't. They weren't some random kids that I didn't know, but my family. Next time I see them, (its been over a year), I will definitely state my resentment of their humor. I know I'm kind of whining too much, but unlike other people, I find absolutely NO advantages to being overweight. The extra pounds that I have carried has brought nothing but discomfort and bad memories.

 
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From: Jason
This is my story...

 

As long as I can remember I was always the fat kid. In school I got the usual remarks.
Fatty, Fatty two-by-fore, lard ass, whale. In junior high the kids took to yelling
Boom ba ba with every step I took. As a defense I would sometimes join in to make them
think that it didn't bother me, when in fact it always did. At 12 years old I weighed
195. I when I tried my first and only diet. The Richard Simmons Deal-a-meal diet. The
original one with the wallet and playing cards. That lasted about a week. Although I did
lost 10 lbs but Richard assured my that was all water weight in the manual. I did have some
friends in school all of them where outcasts like me. But I wanted to be a cool kid so I
played football. Finally I was getting the respect I deserved for everyone. Until I try to
join in to some of there clicks, Where I was even let in I was treated as the court jester,
There to amuse them but my freakish looks and funny antics. I didn't care I was with the cool
kids. I did see past that after awhile. Never the less I still played football. Hating every day
of practice not understanding what was going on, only playing on 3rd string If I was lucky. Still '
I did get some true respect from some kids because I did push myself even though I thought it was
pointless.

I was shy in high school. It seemed in my high school all the fat kids where painfully introverted
or annoyingly extraverted. I chose the former because I would call less attention me and my ugly body.
I became a science geek. I loved it. I was good at. All rocket lunching, Popular Science reading, Star
Trek collecting bit of it. I made me feel smart and powerful while have a extremely low self image and
getting only average grades. I Still played football and hated it, but I did find a new sport I liked,
Track. Of course I was a shot putter, and threw discus. I was a fat guy, but we all where. Finally a
sport I could do. I love it, I was horrible at it but I LOVE IT. I finally had a sense of accomplishment
and pride. I wasn't winning metals but I improved every week. I rest of school went ok. There where
classes I love and other I hated. The fat insults where few and far between. Maybe because of my sports
involvement, maybe because my self-deprecating defense of insulting myself before others could. Insults or
no I never did fell excepted. I was always very shy rarely talked to anyone outside of my own small group
of friends. I was pining away at girls from afar never having the courage and self worth to talk to them.
Therefore I never dated, never went to prom, never had the social experiences that one should have to prepare
them for life. In my junior year of high school I finally quit football and later diagnosed with dyslexia. I
didn't feel I got a lot out of the special education courses they put me in because I was to shy to ask the
teacher questions. A problem which I still deal with today.

After graduation I when away to college thinking this was going to be it. That was going to be my time
to shine. I would live in a dorm 24 hour a day house of partying. I always wanted to go to a party. I was
right party every weekend, kegger just a couple blocks off campus, or even a BS session in somebody else's room.
And I was in my dorm room staring at the ceiling or watching TV like I always did in high school back home. I wasn't
from any of these events. I just couldn't bring myself to go because I felt If I walked though that door all eyes would
be on me that people would whisper to each other and point to the freak fat boy screaming "Get him out of here." That
I could not have happen. So I politely turned down all offers to go. Soon the offers stopped coming and I blew my second
chance at learning my social graces and never made and lasting friends. I was a lack luster college student, few things
interested me there. My only solace was at work. I worked at a large discount retail store in the college town I was in.
I though my self into my work gathering carts from the parking lot and collecting garbage in the store. The managers there
said they had never had someone work so hard and so well collecting carts and garbage. When I was complemented and would
smile and try to be humble about it try not to call attention to myself. The store was filled with people my age customers
and employees alike and plenty of time to get acquainted with your fellow employees after the doors closed. I was well like
their because I was a hard worker so I could stand around and talk much because I had to work. I real reason was that I didn't
know how to start a conversation. When I try in grade school the other kids to call me a name and run away so how could I here.


After two years of the I dropped out, or rather kick due to bad grades, of college and moved back home. I enrolled in a tech
school and transferred my job at the chain discount store to one in my city. I decided to work hard to get my degree and I did.
I got striate A's in almost all classed and also took a few art classes that I enjoyed. And I worked hard at my job as usual. Never
cultivating new friendship. Why bother my old high school gang was still in town and still the best of buddies one could ask for. Us
outcasts went thought a lot together. Still to shy to talk to girls in a non-business way. But I was well liked in school and work
because I learned hard work brings you respect. That is what I was after all along, wasn't it.

Two more years go buy I graduate, quit the store and find a job out of town to a major metropolitan area. The only place I
could find a job in my field. I move out of mom's house and get my own apartment. Freedom at last. I work nine hours a day come
home and sit and eat gaining even more weight and adding to my already 50 inch belly. I got a second job to help get me out of the
house and to make a little extra money and maybe meet people. So I did. Most Of the people I work with are kind and friendly. I
haven't had a fat insult said to my face in years. I meet new people everyday, I'm good at both of my jobs but It's been a year now.
I still don't have any new friends I feel I can hang out with. I'm 24 and I never have had a serious relationship, I trying to pull
myself out of my seeming to be life long depression. And the only way I know how would be to be more sociable. I just can't get
over that wall of letting my guard down long enough to let people into my life. I fell If I do they would have want nothing to do with
me. Just like in grade school. And all because I was a Fat Kid.


 
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From: mohea
This is my story...

 

I am and always have been fat. High school was the usual torture chamber of fat and ugly, fat and ugly, over and over again. My parents were worried and tried to put me on a diet. I do not blame them, because what else was there for them to do? The doctor told them that was the only solution. Why did I had to have my food taken away? What did I do? In an effort to get me to exercise more, mom signed me up for modern dance class. There I was, short and fat, with the willowy thin dancers. The dance teacher (who was years ahead of her time) made no comment on my weight. She taught me to move and enjoy my body. Now at 250 plus, I do, every day. I also send up a prayer every day to Midge Kretchmer, wherever she is.

If your kids are "fat" or overweight or whatever. get them out there and move. They will bitch and moan and carry on, but once they discover how good it feels and how good they feel, they will thank you all their lives. I know I do.

 
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From: mystery advice
This is my story...

 

here is a tip Don't feel bad about being fat and kids won't make fun of you. It's as easy as that

 
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From: Becky
This is my story...

 

I never thought of myself as fat until my parents moved us to a "higher class" city when I was 13. I have 4 younger sisters and our parents wanted to give us a "better" life. We went to better schools and had a better house. But moving was the worst thing they could have done for me. The jokes didn't start right away. But I noticed that I wasn't as small as the other girls in my class. The jokes didn't really start until I was in high school. I started to feel ashamed of my body, and even though I had boyfriends, I was afraid to do anything because of my body. At first I didn't understand them. I knew that I didn't weigh 100 pounds, but I was still a cheerleader and I was active. I was 5'5" and I weighed 133 pounds. But the jokes still kept coming. One that will stay with me forever happened in English class. I was in my cheerleading uniform because we had to wear them on the day of games. Were watching a movie and the teacher asked me to turn off the light. As I got up, someone started making pig noises. My life has never been the same. I am now 26, and I weigh 180 lbs. My husband says it doesn't matter, but he doesn't realize that it matters to me. Because of the jokes of a few people, I am now forever ashamed of my body. I have gone down to 160, only to get pregnant and gain it back. I am afraid of what my son will think of me. My mother-in-law means well at times, but she has even made comments that make me run crying to another room. When I got my hair cut short for the first time, her comment was "you look like Rosie O'Donnell".....my comeback should have been a proud one. Rosie is a strong and successful plus size woman. But because of society, I am forever ashamed of the weight that I carry. Do people not realize the comments that they make stay with people forever. That even comments meant in good sometimes come out wrong and make us feel worse than we already do. I don't wish to be a size 3, but I want to be healthy. I want to see my son graduate, and get married. But the worst feeling in the world is feeling that you are not good enough for anyone because of a small group that left a HUGE impact on your self-esteem. I should be a stronger person but I am not, I should be happy with what I have accomplished in my life, but I am not. And all of this comes because people cannot accept others for who they are. The weight that I carry was not asked for. It did not come about because I am lazy, or because I do not eat healthy. I do. My weight is just me. For all of the times that I think that I am fat now. I wish I could go back to when I weighed 133 pounds. I would be proud of myself, and not have let others let me be the butt of their jokes. Maybe if I had stuck up for myself, I would be stronger now. But even though I have my down moments. Being with my husband and son have made me a lot happier. They both love me for who I am. Not for my outside shell. Thank you for listening!

 
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From: Adam's Wife
This is my story...

 

In my head, I've got a nice, vampy shape. I've got curves in all the right places, baby. In reality, I'm more apple shape than anything. An apple on toothpicks if you will. Anyway. When I was a kid (and more of a small peach on toothpicks, but still "overweight" to my peers) I was the fat kid. To compound this shame, I was also the smartest kid. Great, fat and smart...the two requirements to being the school reject/class joke. Actually, I used to be the subject of great debate: "Would you marry Sarah or would you die?" "Would you marry Sarah or would you eat poop?" "Would you marry Sarah or would you marry a boy?" My favorite answer had to have been "I would marry Sarah, but then I'd kill her because I don't want to eat poop." Nice. In 5th grade, I was the subject of many poems written by several small-minded boys. (My last name was the same as a famous dog starver from literature) They were about me and my supposed love for pigs' feet, because I was so fat (so fat! I was 5'0" and weighed 80 pounds!), I obviously had to eat everything, regardless of the grossness factor. I tried not to let it bother me, but I developed a serious eating disorder in middle school. Thanks to my mother's intervention, I gained most of the weight back in high school. There I wasn't picked on as much, but I didn't have dates either. I heard recently that one of my male friends had a crush on me but refused to ask me out because he didn't want to date the fat chick. Ouch. I attribute this lack of interest from members of the opposite sex to my obsession with being loved, something that plagued me until college. I was lucky, I caught a break. The last semester of my senior year, I dropped high school in favor of early admission to University. When I came back for graduation, I was forty pounds lighter and nobody recognized me. That was gratifying. Again, the weight came back over the course of a couple of years (with an additional thirty pounds) but I had made friends who liked me for me, and met a man who loved me for me. I found someone who actually loved me and would marry me. I have to admit that I'm a bit vain about my husband. He's very, very good looking and successful, and when I meet a former classmate, I always (even if I hated them) have to go up and introduce them to my husband. I'm still fat, a fact that bothers my husband (more because I am out of shape than my shape in general), but he's been around for my thinnest and fattest days and he still loves me. I am so blessed. I hope every fat girl out there is as lucky as I.

 
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From: gully
This is my story...

 

I've been fat since I was 8 years old. It just seemed to happen. I was a very active kid. But as the public censures started, as the whispered criticism began, I knew that I was different. I knew that people thought it was alright to make fun of me and ridicule me because I was fat and that meant there was something wrong with me. When parents, doctors and others discuss you as if you weren't there, mentioning diet, habits, etc., the situation worsens. I have always felt guilty for being me. I've been dieting since I was 8 years old. It doesn't work! I've tried more types of diet programs than I care to think about, spent more money than I care to think about. And none of it worked. Two years ago I started a program on my own of eating healthily and exercising. A back injury derailed that. Now after physiotherapy and mental work I have again started to live in a more healthy and active life. If people want to stare at the "fat girl" working out, I can't do anything about it, except to not let their opinions affect me. I'm feeling better about the whole me. I realize that this is about how you live your life. And I want to go into my senior years feeling well. I will always have the emotional pain with me. I can't change the past , so I'm working on the future.

 
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From: Alice
This is my story...

 

I don't remember ever being thin. I had to wear "chubby" clothes. Even our family doctor made fun of me when I went for my annual visits with my two thin brothers. He would call me fatty or chubby! I suppose he thought it would shame me into losing weight. To this day I have phobia about doctors. My self esteem was so low that I though no one would ever love me and at 20 married the first man who asked. He was an abusive, alcoholic, drug addict, which in some ways taught me that I deserved something better. I got so sick in this abusive relationship that I wouldn't eat and lost 40 lbs. in two weeks. I have managed to remain relatively slim by exercise and watching what I eat, but it's always a struggle. If people only knew the damage this abuse does. I am 46 years-old and no matter how thin I get I still think I'm fat. If anyone looks at me I think they are thinking I'm fat. I cringe when I hear my father say to my nephew (who is fat) that he would do anything that involved food. It makes me want to cry.

 
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From: Draft Horse
This is my story...

 

I was so tiny and thin at birth that the doctors wouldn't let me go home from the hospital at first. In fact, I was a tiny, thin little thing until age nine, when my body started "developing." I got a belly, hips, and large breasts --- forget the training bra, by age ten I was a B cup.

The first time I ever thought about my weight was at Girl Scout Camp, when my mom, who was volunteering there, introduced me to another mom. At that moment, the snap on the waistband of my jeans popped open --- I was growing out as well as up. The woman looked at me and said "Oh, so *you're* the little girl with the waistband problem." I remembered feeling stung, and not knowing why. But I let it go.

I never really worried about my weight until high school, even though somewhere in the back of my mind I was aware that I was different from the thin girls. But my family are very health and sport oriented, and since we all rode bikes, walked, played soccer, and hiked together with no problems, weight was never an issue. There was even one brief time when I was 12 that my figure was *perfect* --- and I didn't realize that, either.

Why did weight become an issue then? Perhaps it was just teenage awkwardness manifesting through something I could perceive and control. Who knows? Anyway, I remember feeling horrible and awful and fat because I weighed 120 lbs. I felt at 5'3", I shouldn't weigh over 100. I made a resolution to diet down to 75 lbs, because that was the "ideal" weight. That was what all the thin girls must weigh.

At the same time, my family were starting to have problems. I remember my mom and I were dieting at the same time, almost competitively. At one point, she weighed 103, and I weighed 104. I thought I was a horrible cow because I couldn't get to 103.

By the grace of G-d, I never got below that point. But I've been steadily putting on weight since then. I hit a high point of about 180 a few months ago --- which I found out in the emergency room, after having been up all night with gall bladder spasms. Wouldn't you know it? My 17 years of yo-yo dieting have actually done me some pretty serious long-term harm. Fortunately, no surgery was necessary. Things could have been a lot worse (my brother, who also dieted, lost his gall bladder because of it.)

Now I'm off dieting for good. I'm educating myself about nutrition, and returning to the active life I used to lead as a child and in college. Comparing me and my family to the "thin" kids at school, I see that it's not so much a difference between "thin" and "fat," as it is a difference in musculature.

I'm built like a draft horse: sturdy, strong, big. No one says Clydesdales are "fat" and Arabian horses are "thin." Arabians are beautiful, but so are Clydesdales.

My ancestors were built for hard work and lean times. In times past, wispy stick-girls wouldn't live through the winter. But modern life is making it so that the evolutionarily weak are succeeding in the gene pool. Where will this leave the future of our species? Makes me laugh sometimes at how stupid the human race can, collectively, be.

For now, I'm learning to love myself as a Clydesdale, instead of trying to fit into the Arabian saddle class. In fact, there is an entire organization, Team Clydesdale (http://www.teamclydesdale.com), comprised of elite, world-class athletes who are made big. Large people, obese by the height-weight charts, but who nonetheless have achieved elite status in marathon, triathlon, cycling events, swimming, and other sports --- and that's elite by *everyone's* standard, not elite meaning "pretty good for a bunch of fat people." They don't have Clydesdale/Athena classes for martial artists yet (this is my sport), but with my agitation, perhaps they will soon =)


 
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From: No Romeo
This is my story...

 

My parents divorced when I was 5. Some of my earliest memories are screaming, fighting, contempt, infidelity, revenge...

I never saw my mom after that. Dad was an inattentive workaholic. I grew up with this sick feeling in the pit of my stomach that I was somehow partly to blame for the divorce and complete severance of ties from my mother. There was no affection in my home and I learned to spend a great deal of time alone. I remember the moment I lost control. I had just turned 7. I opened a jar of peanut butter while I was alone in the house and dad was at work. I remember vividly how I devoured it and felt surprised by the compulsiveness in this act. Years later I learned what the word meant as I had a full blown obsessive compulsive disorder. Guilty feeling from the divorce as well as insecurity over my weight led to more and more involuntary solitude. I never had a date in high school. I hated myself and was taunted relentlessly. The thing that keeps me breathing is my desire for love and intimacy. I've never truly had it but it looks so nice in the movies. I lost weight after high school and married the first girl I could find. Needless to say that was a mistake. I gained some weight back and she left me. So another divorce separated me from the women I loved. This time a wife and daughter. I've been fat and alone ever since. 11 years. I sleep alone. I eat alone. I sit at home alone... Its maddening. I try to be social. I have friends. But I never meet a woman that shows the slightest interest. When I show interest it ends abruptly and embarrassingly - every time. I feel totally lost. Being fat has ruined my self esteem, my social life, hindered my career and devastated my love life. Not the life I dreamed of.

 
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From: Lynne
This is my story...

 

My Friends,
I, as most of us, could write a book related to all the pain that comes to those of us afflicted by obesity. It is, I believe, a disease that we have no choice in the matter. It is part of the cards we were dealt, so to speak. I spent 35 years overweight. By the age of 35, I weighed in at 310 lbs. Hurting in every aspect of the word. I had been on every diet, fad or otherwise, known to man. I decided to have the Gastroplasty surgery done as a last resort. That was 3 years ago, and today I weigh 110 lbs. soaking wet. I have no skin hanging ( That shows ) and people that I choose to share the story with don't believe me. I have to show before and after pictures and then they say "That's not you!" In the before picture. Well, the reason I'm telling this is because guess what? The hurt doesn't go away! They didn't operate on my brain. Even though people that never knew me before, say things like "You look so pretty Lynne. I wish I was small like you." These are people I work with now that have no clue where I've been and what I bring to the table. They say "How do you keep that cute little figure?" And on and on. Sure these are all nice to hear. And for all my life I dreamed of what it would be like to be "Normal Size" and be accepted. Well the truth is, all that pain from 35 years still haunts me. Remember that the grass is Not always greener. Count your Blessings not your calories!!

 
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From: anonymous filipina
This is my story...

 

I was very fat. my fattest was at age 14 when I weighed a whopping 210 pounds! my schoolmates would often tease me and makes me feel out of place, different, a laughing stock. at first, I never cared, but as I mature, it would hurt deeper and deeper till it really marked my heart. At a young age I felt so abused, unlucky and all that despair anyone could get, I remember the nasty faces of the boys who used to laugh at me during summer class, and everyone staring at me as I walk, I felt like dying those times. I would often cry, I wonder how I managed to survive all those nightmares. now, 16 I lost 65 pounds all by myself, naturally more on crash diet. all because of grief, yes, I lost weight but I'm still unhappy, I feel like its still the same, my friend told me that my attitude changed since I lost weight. but they r wrong, this is the real me, I still feel different thou, they probably think I'm boastful of bragging coz I lost weight, some would even spread I used diet pills. heck no! I started to see darkness again, I want to shout. I did not change. all I need is true n sincere love I never ever felt from anybody till now. I'm so lonely, y cant I just live normally? that's all I want.

 
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From: Jess
This is my story...

 

Hi, My name is Jess and I am 13 years old. I weight 120lbs and I can't stay on a steady diet! I am tall but for me I have the biggest stomach for a girl! At school I was nominated for the biggest belly! Sometimes I try to think that I am like everyone else but I know that I am not! I have had many boyfriends but All they did was look at my face and ask me out! I know that when a person looks at your face and decides that they like you for your looks that it a bad think! But something did turn out right for once, I have a steady boyfriend that I have been going out with since May and he said to me after I have asked him if he thinks that I am overweight, he said "I will love you for what ever size you are but I love your personality and good looks." That is my story and I am proud that people can except me the way that I am and not look at my stomach!
~Jess~

 
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From: Anonymous
This is my story...

 

I loved to roller skate when I was in 3rd grade and when I was at a roller rink near my house (in tights and a leotard with a skirt on it) I heard someone call me a cow. I have now quit a sport that I love because someone said that I looked like a cow. people don't think before they act and many people are hurt by that. one day I believe that they will stop teasing and then everyone will be happy.

 
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From: When will i be perfect
This is my story...

 

Well I have always been a very beautiful and cute baby, in fact I was skinny, so skinny my mom thought there was something wrong with me when I was a baby that she even fed me extra, then when I hit the age of 9, I started to be chunky. I was always excepted into "the popular group" but an outcast in that group, not all the girls approved of me because I had the beautiful face, but the big belly. Middle school got harder, and seeing all the other girls with boyfriends and stuff really made me mad, so I started turning to drugs, I got out of school and went to a special program for "bad kids" there I didn't have time to eat as much and dropped 10 pounds. At this program, I had my first true friend who I still talk to , and my first boyfriend. it made me feel great to have someone love me, after we broke up I thought it was because I was too ugly and fat, so I began to starve myself 7 days at a time, now I'm in high school, I'm almost at my ideal weight, I have friends, boys that like me, then I got expelled and gained 20 pounds, school is right around the corner and I'm not eating and exercising to take as much weight as I can off, my face is getting acne, I am now 15 going into 10th, and have had suicide thoughts, attempts, just everything, I'd just like to know when am I ever going to be perfect?

 
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From: Steph
This is my story...

 

I started reading things on this website because of something that happened to me at work today. I guess I thought it would be healing to me to read the stories of others who could understand. Anyway. I will start at the beginning...I have always been fat. I was fat as a child and always teased. I got the usual moo noises and taunts. I was called whale and fatty and all sorts of things. It caused this pain in my heart that runs so deep, I know it will never go away. I actually lost weight in high school, dropped 75 lbs. I was thin and it was amazing the amt of attention I got because of it. I still felt fat and ugly. Once your self esteem takes a beating like mine has it never recovers. I dated a lot and had a lot of friends. But somehow it never made up for those people who felt it necessary to point out my obesity to me (as if I didn't already know). I of course gained all my weight back in college. I still have it all too. I am 5'7 and weigh 260. I got married 2 months ago to the most wonderful man ever. He loves me unconditionally and never ever mentions my weight only tells me I am beautiful. I have a successful career and a family that loves me, But those fat comments still haunt me. When I got married I decided to diet again. I have lost 15 lbs and have been getting so many compliments. Then today, at work some jerk old man decided to call me " that old fat girl" and proceeded to let everyone know who he was talking about. Now the fact that he didn't know I was listening does not excuse it. But I have been crying all day off and on. My husband was furious at this man's ignorance and has tried so hard to console me. But it was just like all those insults came flooding back from my childhood. My heart still breaks. And I know I can lose my weight and I will.. I have done it before. And that might stop the cruel remarks.. But it will never, ever take away the hurt. My heart aches for others in my situation. I wish that people would see us for the person we are inside, and love us for that. The only thing that has helped me at all is becoming a Christian. Since I have become closer to God I have found acceptance, completely. God loves me no matter what... and after all isn't He the only one who REALLY matters?

 
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From: Sharen
This is my story...

 

Beautiful evening in new Orleans. We went to the house of blues, wandered around the funky art shops in the French quarter, had our palms read, went to the French market and we loved each other. Sun setting over the river, with the paddleboats floating, next to the man I love holding hands and it was the most magical day.
Then my perfect day was knocked into the mud as a carload of drunken frat boys drove by and screamed "fat ass" at me laughing like howler monkeys and threw a beer can in my direction. Every nasty memory of bullies from high school came rushing in at me. Every snicker behind my back, every moo, every comment, every lonely lunch, every sticker with nasty sayings put on my back, on my locker, on my car
every boy I had a crush on who made fun of me, rivers of tears came over me like a flood in that moment. Then the man I loved looked at me, like he just realized he was holding hands with an alligator he let go of my hand, and backed up a step. Outside I looked mad, inside I crumbled like a 100 year old newspaper. As this man who fed me pralines at the French market an hour before said, you could lose a little weight you know.

 
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From: Flat Fatty
This is my story...

 

I am a thirteen year old girl. most ladies my age are thin and have some signs of becoming a woman. Well not me. I'm 158 pounds and I have NO chest. one day in the dressing room the popular girls looked at my bra size and the started laughing. "your not even an A YET!!!!!!!" they all laughed. now they call me flat fatty. I can hear the words echoing while I lay in bed at night. I cant help being flat. I just want to be thin. if anyone knows any way that I can loose weight please reply to this. thanks

 
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From: Fern
This is my story...

 

I was fat since inception, weighing almost 10 pounds. As I grew older the weight just kept rising as well as my height. By age 11 I was 5'8 and weighed almost 200lbs. I was not very happy to say the least. Nonetheless I took pleasure in the comfort of eating to fill up the void. Everyone knew my weight had crippled me socially, but no one extended any favors to help in the least. I was alone and understandably so I had managed to exclude myself from all those I truly loved. I was extremely depressed and found comfort in the Lord. I understood that food was not the problem I was and that something needed to be done quickly. The years passed and with determination and perseverance I managed to lose a large part of myself in the process. Today I live a much more health conscious lifestyle continue to obsess over my weight even though I can be easily carried off by a strong gust of wind. I hope that you the reader understands that I had to greatly condense my story and that losing any amount of weight takes a very long time. I paid my dues and it shows. Never feel like you are alone in this battle just keep a head up and everything will turn out fine. Feel free to seek the Lord he always welcomes a new soul. Thank You and God Bless you and America.

 
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From: Beky
This is my story...

 

Okay I was sort of fat, when I was younger, I was 140 pounds in 5th grade, I find that sort of chunky. But seriously if you are one bit overweight, the kids around you will notice. I wasn't picked on, but like, when no boys even ever considered going out with me, and just feeling like you are an outsider, hurts more than anything. I hope that I don't sound air-headed. I have since lost weight, and feel sort of happy with my weight. I used to dream about being as skinny and pretty as the young girls at my school, and now I am, and I am not happier than I was before. I remember being chunky and so unhappy, and I feel like I wasted all of my time, all of my childhood worrying and complaining about my weight, and that really sucks, I should have enjoyed my childhood, but I didn't I just thought that I was fat. And I was also sort of dorky, I had a mushroom cut hair due and as I look back on pictures of myself I just have to laugh. And I remember one incident where I was on the playground at my school and me and my "dorky" friend wanted to hang out with the "cool" group, but they told us to leave. That sounds dumb, but I bet if I was really good looking and really skinny that they wouldn't have said that. And I just always have these flashbacks of when I was younger and they make me feel so sad and lonely and depressed. But I can't take back all of those years when I was fat, I have to move on, and I try, but it will always be with me. And I try NEVER ever to judge people, if I see a large boy, I will go up and talk to him, or a larger girl, I will just go up and talk to her, I really hate people who judge others for what they look like. But I find myself doing that, and I hate myself for ever judging people because of what they look like. And I want to apologize to anyone who has ever been hurt before by someone who was picking on them, those people will pay, or they will eventually feel your pain. I want to tell all of you , to just try to live your life to its fullest. Don't ever waste it, and don't ever get hurt by someone's ignorance. I hope that you all can understand this.

 
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From: Anonymous
This is my story...

 

I have always been close with my family. I have only grown to admire my parents and my brother more with age, they are loving, supportive, funny, and the cornerstone of my confidence. And it was my admiration for them that made it difficult when they pointed out that I "needed to lose weight."

Since I was young, about seven years old, my weight was an open subject. As kids began to make fun of me for being fat, my mother would say, "don't come running to me when they call you fat" when I would eat French fries or ice cream. But that is exactly what I did when their taunts inevitably reached my sensitive ears. And my mother would never be able to stand behind her words...she couldn't be cold if she tried. She'd hug me and tell me that everything was okay, and would privately cry herself because she couldn't stand to see me so hurt.

Though it certainly was not meant that way, I always took my mother's tears as a tangible indication of disappointment. She cried not only because the other kids were making fun of me, but because by being fat I was less than what she envisioned of me. I was her pride in every other way. But I still was fat, still insecure and sensitive about it, and still vulnerable to the other kids.

It is true that everybody is insecure in one way or another. But being overweight is different. Having your biggest insecurity on display for everyone to see is amazingly vulnerable, especially when you are a kid. It's like a bright beacon saying, "Hey if this kid threatens you in anyway, makes you look dumb, does anything you don't like, etc., just call him fat and you win the approval of everyone else." Many kids found that temptation too attractive to resist.

In the past three months, I am now 24 years old, I have lost over 50 lbs. I have another 50 to go. But already I see the differences in the way people react to me, especially those who are meeting me for the first time. There is no longer that "fat dork until proven otherwise" attitude offered me. It is a sad fact of life, but true nonetheless, that the fat kid remains the fat kid, all the way to adulthood. I myself managed to overcome it in certain ways, and become a popular, well-adjusted kid in high school and in college. But still to this day, when a person first meets me, I have ten more hurdles to across before they offer me the easy acceptance someone with a 30 inch waist gets immediately. And still, after all this years and all I have accomplished and risen above, there is that fat kid inside who is hurt, and who knows how vulnerable he is.

 
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From: Simona
This is my story...

 

First of all sorry about my English, is not so good. I was fat too, not extremely, but fat. Since I was 7. I'm from Romania and here is exactly like elsewhere, fat kids are ridiculed, people make jokes about them, they call them names. Now I am 30 y old and still fat. In January 2001 I had about 255... (about 114 kg), now (Jan2002) I have 204 (93kg) and going down. What I realized over the years is that what really is important is not how everyone feel about you but how you feel about you. And more important is your health. Last year I was diagnosed with a diabetes, I also want to have a child but, because of some problems with my ovaries, due to my weight, I can not. And now I regret that I didn't start to lose weight when I was younger and lighter. But, most of all, I understood that the real health I gain by loosing weight is that of my mind (you know, I'm not anymore so self conscious, so afraid of what others will say about me).
To conclude, I want to encourage all of you to do what's best for you each, to stay open minded, to learn as much as you can and to be happy no matter how fat or thin you are! Be happy!

 
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From: Sad
This is my story...

 

I am almost 12 right now and I am 5'1. I weigh 130 lbs. I don't look that fat and I have been getting taller so I am stretching and getting skinnier. No one jokes be about it or anything. But I am going to starve myself so I will get skinny. I am going to weight 100 lbs or less my summer so I can wear a two piece bathing suit and walk around in it at White Lake in front of boys with out being shy!!!!!

 
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From: someone
This is my story...

 

I was fat all my childhood until age 14. then I starved myself down to 49 kilograms. I was anorexic until age 16. then I gained weight and became bulimic. I lived horrible 2 1/2 years binging and purging. I am now 20. for my mother, weight is all that matters. After an extremely successful first semester in a foreign University, she refused to greet me at the airport, because I was "looking like a pig". my mother had called me all insulting names known to mankind. It was her fault I started starving myself. She was so happy when I lost 25 kilograms in about 6 months. I have never been an outcast, because I always preferred to be alone, but I am very witty and charming and popular. I was popular even while fat. My mother's attitude is what is haunting me for years. Now I have normal weight and only 6 months ago I forced myself to tell my mother the truth about my "beauty". Ever since she had never mentioned the word "diet" in the house. So now I am beautiful, but so what. I don't have a boyfriend and barely some real friends despite my popularity. Talk about weight making happy.

 
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From: Francesca
This is my story...

 

I'm not fat at all but I am very emotionally mature I'm only 12 in 1st year high school and EVERYONE worries about their weight even if they are as thin as a piece of string. I totally feel for these kids and I hope they can ignore these bullies who tease them and so on its unfair and horrible and I wish them good luck. I would never tease or bully anyone because of their weight and if I did without thinking I don't think I could forget it. Anyway I hope you all are happy now.

 
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From: Anonymous
This is my story...

 

I am 12 yrs old. I am the biggest in my class.
I don't care!
That's how most people see me. The thing is I've always been bigger. I was bullied in year 3. I've came last on races. But I've never shown any signs that I care. I'm a size 18(UK).
But I don't care.
WELL I DO CARE!
That's what people don't seem to realize. Once every now and then when I see the boy I like I wonder if thing's would be different if I was smaller.
This happens a lot but when I look at my friends my awards for being friendly and the 1 sport award for shot-put ( no running involved )
I realize I'm happy the way I am and no one can change me.
So to any other's out there...
Be happy and enjoy life at school, work or whatever cos you only get 1 life at least we don't spend it on diet's that don't work.

 
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From: Dana
This is my story...

 

I'm still young now, I'm in 10th grade and I'm pretty fat. Yeah I'm not that big, but big enough. I used to have friends in groups, now it's just two close friends. I used to because I was younger and it didn't matter as much. It's so hard going to the mall n seeing all the guys look at my friend, like stare her down. Not only do I put myself down, but my brothers, mother and acquaintances do. Whether they are kidding or not, there telling me I'm fat. Then when I put myself down I get yelled at, meanwhile they are thinking the same thing and then telling me that its not true, oh okay!... yeah well honestly I think I have an okay face..and it really hurts because I have potential. Any guy that talks to me thinks I'm some slut because I have a low self-esteem and I'm just easy. Sorry hunny! Yeah well I don't know I guess it could be worse, I just have a lot of problems to begin with and this is one I wish I didn't have to worry about. Why can't big be beautiful?

 
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From: SARAH
This is my story...

 

Up until puberty (10) I was an average size girl. But then puberty hit and it hit hard. I was the first girl my age group at school to go through puberty. I started getting fatter than all the other people my age. In 8th grade I weighed 200 pounds. By the 12th grade I weighed 250 pounds. I haven't weighed anymore than that. I still weigh around 240.
I can relate to all the stories about bullies, being teased, being picked last for teams, etc. School was Hell for me. No one wanted to be my friend. NOT A SINGLE PERSON.

Since I was kept being reminded of how fat and ugly I am I started believing that I would not be pretty enough or good enough at anything. Since I believed that I didn't try to get better (like what's the use anyway).

In the 12th grade a new kid went came to school, his name was Steve (he was skinny as a pole). He was the first person that made me feel like I was something special. He invited me to the Senior prom (me? at the prom, I couldn't believe it). The night went all right. He even asked me to be his girlfriend. I couldn't believe it.

Pretty soon the whole school knew that Steve had asked me out. It was terrible. he would get beat up, picked on, and teased a lot for going out with me. He even wound up in the hospital for a week because someone saw him kiss me on the cheek. Fatty Lover was spray painted on his car, house, and locker. It was terrible for us. One day we were talking in the gym and someone through a basketball our way and it landed on Steve's nose and knocked some teeth out.

A couple of weeks later Steve handed me this note in hall:

Sarah,

I don't want to be your boyfriend anymore. The other kids are being terrible to me. Don't take this personal. I still like you, but only as a friend.
Steve

I still have that note to this very day.

I am 21 and have never had a decent relationship with a guy. I honestly have to say that I wouldn't know what to do if I had a boyfriend. I honestly wouldn't know what to do

My dad EVERYDAY reminds me "If you would lose your weight boys would like you". I am about to give up hope and accept that I may never have a boyfriend.

 
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From: Mary
This is my story...

 

I am a fat person. As I write this, there are 140 pounds on my 5'6" inch frame and they all fit nicely into size 8 jeans. I can shop in a "normal" clothing store, I can go to the doctors and not have any possible illness blamed on my weight--"an ear infection? Impossible. You're just too fat" and I can go through an entire day without someone making a cruel comment about my weight. But I am a fat person.

I can tell you the moment I became a fat person. I was young, second grade perhaps? And I was a big kid. Through elementary school, I towered over all the other students. I look at pictures, and I wasn't a fat child. Chubby would hardly even work. I just developed VERY rapidly. I started menstruating in fourth grade, when I was still playing with Barbies. And I'd reached my full, adult height of 5'6" by fifth grade.

Anyway, that moment... I was outside playing with my cousins. One of them had a bicycle, which she was riding down the block. 8 or so, and energetic, I ran after her, up and down the block. So much of my life hinges on this moment: before it I was carefree, and had a chance of being 'normal'. And then, my older sister felt the need to bring to my attention a comment a neighbor had made in regards to me running up the block: "maybe if she keeps up with that she'll lose some weight".

Everything changed at that moment. My body, my physical being, my weight were being judged by others and I was made aware of it. And, oddly enough, my method of escaping this reality came via the fridge. I remember thinking if I was going to be a fat person, I might as well be as fat as possible. I have no idea why I thought that, but I did. And I ate through my childhood with a panic. The went from just a large child, to a chubby child, to a fat child. Between the end of fifth grade and the start of seventh grade, I gained 100lbs. During eighth grade I gained 50 more.

I started high school at 264 pounds. I remember the trip to the doctors for my school physical. The first thing the doctor said--my first trip to her office--when she walked in the room was not "hi" or "nice to meet you" but "my, you're fat". I pulled the paper 'robe' as far around me as possible and began to cry. I was not even a person to this doctor, my weight had some how taken away that right. I went through my freshman year of high school fat. Being forced to wear "old people" clothes, because they didn't make a plus-size 2x-3x for juniors. Having to have a "special" dress, because I couldn't fit into the choir dresses--sorry, they only go up to a size 22. Having gym teachers tell me it wouldn't hurt me to "lose a couple hundred pounds" in front of my peers. Having my peers ignore me, not even want to be seen talking to that fat girl--they didn't even bother learning my name. Having my mother hide food from me, having her trying to put me on diets, telling me that its for my own health, and overhearing her tell my sister how embarrassed SHE is by MY weight. I was just as fat, and just as tortured by it my sophomore year of high school.

And then, my junior year of high school, something happened. I was so sick of it. I wanted to be normal. I went on this crazy diet. For an entire 6 months, I ate a tuna fish sandwich everyday, and that was all. Every day at 3pm I ate my sandwich. I had no energy and spent most of those days in bed. Laying there too lethargic to move, and welcoming sleep if only because they'd ease the hunger pains. I have no idea how much weight I lost, because I didn't weigh myself. I was terrified to. Strangely no one seemed to noticed--or at least mention my weight loss. The latter part of my crazy diet fell over summer vacation and I spent the summer in this one pair of sweat pants and this one t shirt. When school started and I went to dig out my jeans, I realized they didn't fit. They were WAY to big. My mom and I went to the store and I tried on pants until I found the size that fit: a juniors 13. I remember being so happy when those pants slide on. I was now going to be normal.

But, it never happened. I equated normal with thin, I suppose, but I'll always be a fat person. For all they say about crazy diets, mine some how worked: I kept the weight off. I gain a little back now and again, especially in winter--five or ten pounds, but it's always come back off. There was a brief time where the scale went back up to 190lbs a few years ago, during an episode of depression, but again, it came back off. What NEVER LEFT was the humiliation of being a fat person. That paranoid, overwhelming feeling when people laugh when I'm any where near them--they must be laughing at how fat I am. That need, before I excuse myself from a table in a restaurant, to plot my 'route', making sure I'll be able to fit through certain areas. The dread of going to the doctors, the humiliation of stepping on a scale when I'm only there with the flu. The blush, embarrassment and silent anger and over comes me when people tell fat jokes in my presences. I can't escape it. It's so engrained in who I am. Regardless of numbers or dress sizes, I'll always think of myself as a fat person.

 
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From: Susie
This is my story...

 

My story is like yours (the others that I have read). I am now 35 years old and although my outlook has changed as well as my image there are days that block out all the strides I seem to have made. Those days are the days that appear like nightmares with their insufferable emotions and memories of no self-esteem. My family was always there not to boost me or make me see my self - worth , but there too goad and taunt. It was horrific! To this day I believe that the evil lies in our society that deifies youth and slimness as opposed to individuality and individual strength. There are so many layers to this situation. Today, when I see fat kids I empathize so much with their pain and realize that the more the parent, teacher, books, magazines tell them to lose weight the more the child WILL rebel and eat. I wish I had had a more holistic approach to my situation i.e. I wish my parents had negotiated me as a sensitive child seeing with adult eyes and allowed me the space to grow within myself and see my own beauty and NOT the beauty that they expected from me and accepted me ONLY once I was thin.

These days I believe in health and fitness and although a fuller figure I am by no means obese or consider myself ugly...I speak here of good days which luckily by now, far outnumber the bad days memory days no matter how hard you try the blame and self-loathing comes to eat you alive and the only solace you find is through the thing that you have hated for so long and now are trying to find peace with.

I would love to suggest that self-acceptance is what it is all about and that our society is literally screwed up when it comes to images of beauty. Freedom is a choice not a necessity that one has to adhere to find its grace. Beauty IS in the eye of the beholder but that should not let us off the hook as far as looking after oneself is concerned. A healthy disposition is better for one. It creates clarity and well-being and it is THIS which parents should instill in their children and not the FEAR of failure and diets and the look of others. Viva the individual - create your own strengths and don't be lazy about the process. Be pro-active. Be conscious of self. My parents and teachers NEVER taught me that. All that they shared with me was guilt about my appearance; how I appeared in opposition to everybody else; how I didn't deserve to dress nicely, to look nice ; to inspire and be inspired by myself and others.

And when I think about this all in retrospect I realize that actually being a fat kid taught me so much about my self and about life that no other lesson could have done quite the same thing. It taught me to look inwards for change - not outward. It taught me not to blindly conform. It taught me that others in higher positions are not always right. It taught me to appreciate other things besides the transient pursuits of the magazine culture - to appreciate art in all its forms.

So although the burden is still there and comes back to haunt. I am glad for the experience because I opted to change for myself and for no one else.

 
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From: Cody
This is my story...

 

I was seven years old and went to the circus I wanted to ride the elephant. I weighed 200lbs. All of the other children were lifted on to the elephant. When they got to me, the man said "Your a Big fella." He tried lifting me, shoving me, pulling me, and couldn't get me on. Finally the man on the ground leading the elephant said "If you can't get him on, you can't get him on. He's just too big." I slipped off the elephant nearly tipping the saddle, with 4 other kids on it, off of the elephant and just stood on the podium. I was too embarrassed to go back to my seat. I could hear the people laughing. Then the elephant came back and before I could do anything the man tried again to lift me on. I began to get red with embarrassment as the crowds laughter seemed to erupt. The man was making all sorts of unnecessary grunting noises and expressions when I finally just said never mind and stomped back to my seat. it was at that moment that I recognized that I had a problem and I had to get help.

 
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From: Anonymous
This is my story...

 

At age thirteen I weighed almost 200 pounds. I had been overweight since I was six. I can't really remember being "skinny" and that doesn't bug me. I have never really felt unliked as I have a lot of friends I just feel different and when I walk into a store knowing I can only wear certain things bugs me. But the other day I was in the change room at a store trying on grade eight grad dresses and when the sales clerk came out and complimented me before my friend it made me feel good knowing that fat people can be pretty too.

 
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From: Brandy
This is my story...

 

My story is not so much of a childhood one, but that of my present college life. Ever since the first grade, I was worried about being fat. I am petite and always have been, but I cried the day that the scale said 60 lbs. Now I am in college, and my stomach seems to be growing out of control, my boyfriend is always complaining about how he needs to lose weight and I just look at myself and cringe. My best friend claims she is really fat, and she has the same amount of fat on her as me, so what am I then? No one really says anything, but I know who they look at when the girls that look like they never eat and resemble Ally Mcbeal walk by. I feel for everyone on this site and just want to say that I would kill for everyone to look at the person inside of me, fat or not, and to take me for that. So that's what I try to do for everyone else, cause maybe that is what is gonna stop all of these horrible ideas that it is unpopular or undesirable to be overweight. If I give them a chance, maybe one day they will all give me one too.

 
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From: Corrin
This is my story...

 

I remember when I was in middle school years and I thought I was fat but I really wasn't as my friends and my loving boyfriend back then which I am married to. I cried all the Time I thought I was fat I looked at me self and cried. I went though depression didn't really eat. I was 5"9' like 90lbs, at that age I was suppose to be 140lbs. I thought I didn't have a eating probably but I did. but I started to eat in 10th grade. I am at a perfect weight and I love myself.

 
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From: Good Things about your fat
This is my story...

 

One day, in high school, the editor came and asked me for a quote. Then he asked if there any advantages to being overwieght. Well, you can imagine my response. "Are you kidding me? A good thing about this hell?" I laughed in his face. Later on, I started thinking "What did he mean by advantages?" So I started a list about the good things about being overweight and over the years some have added to it but here it is as according to now.
1. When playing "Truth or Dare" you know you won't
be required to make out with somebody you
don't even know
2. You can always break the ackward silence on a
date by pulling out the old joke of "Does this
dress make me look fat".
3. In sex ed you won't be required to wear that
ridolous "Pregant Stomach Suit"
4. When you grow up you can publish a book about all
teasing that the jerks in school did and become
a best-selling author and millionaire.
5. All fairy tales end when the teased smart kids
truimph and the popular kids are stuck at the
local Burger King.
6. You learn how to swim before anyone else.
7. You learn to defend yourself.
8. You learn to look past the exterior of a person
and look inside.
9. You learn not to judge people before you know
their story
10.All the teasing just makes you a stronger person
11. You learn to respect and love your body because
it is all your very own.

 
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From: marilyn
This is my story...

 

well i am 15 and my weight problem started about when i was in 3rd grade and i weigh about 270 now and im only in 10th grade i have had a really bad depression because people always seem like they like me but are embarrased to be with me i am really nice and funny but i guess i look diffrent no guys will ever stare or look at me. but i thought i could put it all to an end when i had slit my wrists and had to be taken to the ER
and i almost died right nnow i wish i had of died i cant deal with the pain and emmbarassment im so mad and sad with my self errrrr

 
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From: "Marty"
This is my story...

 

BTW, Marty isn't my real name. Marty is a character in a movie, and bonus points to those who can figure out why I chose that psuedonym. Hint: it won Best Picture in 1955.

Yep, amazing, isn't it? Seems that most of the stories on this site are from women or girls, but there are plenty of guys out there that deal with the hurt and ridicule of being 'disproportionate' on a daily basis. I'm 30 now, and 315 pounds, and I still deal with the consequences.

People have mentioned to me that they don't believe I weigh as much as I do, whenever somehow the actual mention of weight comes up. Granted, I'm a fairly solid fellow. While I do have substantial fat on my frame, there's a lot of frame, and muscle, there under it. Can't say that matters a lot, though, because it's the fat that shows.

I've always been fat. Never known a time in my life when I was anywhere near average. I was pushing 200 in sixth grade, 235 at the start of high school, 270 by graduation. On a 6 foot tall frame, that might not sound too entirely bad, but trust me, it was bad enough.

In middle school, I was the target du jour. Not only was I fat, I was painfully shy, having been raised by an absentee working mom and her parents (my grandparents) who were much older and very "hands off" types. As long as I didn't cause trouble, life was good. Was never allowed out to play with the neighborhood kids, rode my bike in the back yard, no friends ever came over, never went to any friends' houses, etc. Add the facts together that I was disproportionately wide and shy and socially sheltered, and you have all the ingredients for a miserable human being. Hi there. That's me.

Once I got to high school, I came to realize that "Fatism", for lack of a better word, is pretty much the only socially acceptable, nee institutionalized, form of torment and discrimination. Teachers and administration were no help. The same gang of popular kids were the most unmerciful from grade school all the way up. Before long, I began to embrace my fatness and use humor as a reflexive defense, whether or not it was appropriate. "Okay, the fat guy's here--lock up the fridge!" I'd say. Or, "here ya go, rub the Bhudda's belly for luck." Heh, some would. I would both delight and cringe whenever someone would bust up laughing at my antics.

I can recall one time, however, I let my temper flare. I got tired of hearing about how fat I was and how much of a dork I was and how much of a loser I was, and I carefully looked to see when the gym teacher's back was turned out on the track. Punched a kid named Scott in the stomach. There was a modicum of "ooh's" and "uh oh" 's when that happened, but mainly they were aimed at Scott, his friends basically telling him without words, "hey, you're gonna let the fat kid get away with that?" Scott clocked me in the jaw. The teacher never saw it or found out about it, Scott's dignity was upheld, and my torment went from daily words of abuse to being either ignored or looked at like a leper. Note to all: sometimes standing up for yourself, letting your frustration get the better of you, only makes things worse in the long run, even if there are no immediate repercussions.

I started off in high school playing football, hating every second of it. I didn't know the game, I didn't care about the game, I had no clue, but since I was a big kid, I was made to sign up for it by my eighth grade gym coach. Six plays into my first game my career was promptly shut down by another kid my size who landed on me, making me land on my ankles badly, ripping ligaments left and right. Still can't run worth a damn to this day. I got into theatre as a bit of escapism, but that only exposed me to more creative and theatrical insults whenever I tried to just be myself among them--I wasn't one of the 'popular' theatre kids. I found my niche, though, in tech. As long as I was building sets, rigging lights, running the sound board and light board, especially since no one else cared to or knew how, I was halfway respected. Unfortunately, this enthusiasm translated into a theatre scholarship at college, where I was soon exposed to just how cruel people can be when it's a refined art and subtle and expected.

Dropped out of college, worked around a few lousy jobs, long story short here I am now. Never had a serious relationship. Haven't had -a- relationship in nine years. Still make myself sick when I look in the mirror. Tried suicide once, didn't take. No remote signs of improvement in the future. No friends left outside of a few I know online. I won't be so simple as to suggest that being fat is the cause of all my woes, but it sure as hell never helped any. Also, I smoke now, started in college. Pack or so a day. I wonder which one will kill me first. I wonder...I honestly wonder...if I care which one kills me first. Not too many reasons to keep going, when you're trapped in a spiral of loneliness and heartfelt requests for a rope or a hand up are met with, "the hell is your problem? Come on, get over it. Save yourself." After a lifetime of scorn and ridicule and first-hand learning how 'normal' people are cruel and unforgiving, why would I want to save myself?

I realize this rant has digressed from a commentary about fatness into a general diatribe on misery, but b logically follows a. Save yourself if you can. Start young, work out, starve, throw up, whatever it takes. Don't give them a chance to start hurting you. Don't end up alone and ignored. Don't end up like me.

 
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From: Manda
This is my story...

 

This might be wrong! Im 14 yrs old starting highschool and i weigh 117! Im don't think im fat and neither does anyone else. I thought that i would just tell all you people how reading these stories has changed my mind about overweight people. I used to make fun of girls that there fat hanged out of there pants or you could see thier rolls through there shirts. I would never ever think about going out with an overwieght boy. And I still say that im fat and i need to lose weight. After reading the stories i think i know sorta how the people feel, even though i know i will never know the pain they have gone through or still go through today. Im proud of all of them and envy them for having the courage that i knew i would never have. Thank You!

 
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From: Grahams
This is my story...

 

My story is kinda different, I guess, from a lot of people's. And it's not because I've had some kind of miracle slimming and lost it all and become a thin-guy model everyone can adore. Nope. I'm real big now. I'm bigger than I've ever been before and I don't know particularly if I ever will get thin ... and I expect that I'm not going to be very good at losing weight on the diet that I'm starting now (my first). I've always been big. When I was a little boy I was never really all that little. Even my baby pictures show me "pumped up by a bicycle pump". When I was playing football or soccer or whatever with other kids, regardless of what age I was, I was always the biggest - or one of the biggest - playing. That went for everything. I'm just big-built. I was never thin and never expect to be. I'm strong and bear-ish. I didn't ever ask for that and never have tried to do anything about it. But I've also always been fatter than I should be. When I was really young, I was never really fat, really. I mean, I was big, but my friends didn't think that I should have been dieting. I'm 24 and a half now and don't know how to feel about my childhood anymore though, when it comes to what I should have been thinking or doing. My parents and brothers are all also big people. My Dad's at least 300 lbs and my Mom's about 200 lbs. But we're all just big and happy about it. Except me, kinda, now. Not because I think I should be thinner, but because I've always had this weird feeling that I wasn't even fat - that I was just supposed to be big. I was never picked on by anyone my age when I was little. I never had much trouble from older kids either when I was always pretty much the biggest boy around. Even my 3-year older brother Mark is smaller than me - has been since we were ten and seven. I was 6' at 12 and 260'. I was fat. I was definitely well-proportioned and strong too, but I was also really just-plain fat. I wish now that I could have had more problems with it, kinda. I grew up always the first to hit puberty, hit 6', hit 200 lbs., get hairy in weird places, get date-offers from older girls etc... Well, that last one could just be selective memory... But I was also never really interested in using my size for anything. I've wanted to be smaller and less noticeable most of the time. I've broken up smaller boys fights just by walking over a whole lot of times... I never started a fight or intimidated anyone intentionally. But I - a whole lot - wanted to just not be so big... but I just ate along with my family as much as I wanted - as always - and I've always been pretty happy. I didn't get into sports in high school as much as I might have - I love football and, on top of a lot of folks telling me I had to play, I just am much happier doing other stuff with my time. I've got great friends that I grew up with and I've never felt like I was too big around, but I do know that I was always the biggest kid. When I was about eight years old, I remember actually being the boy that put all the scaredy-cat girls (and some boys) up in the treehouse in my friend Aaron's backyard at his birthday party - and then being too heavy for anyone to be able to pull me in or even want me to come up into it because the the treehouse was too full. Course, it was only a few feet off the ground, but I was totally flustered that no one thought I should go in. Sure, I got teased for being too big for stuff. I am now. But American society is all about the bigger-the-better in some ways. I don't remember ever really getting made fun of for being as chubby as I was. I used to have nightmares for a brief while when I was growing really fast in puberty that I was going to be too tall to fit in any building and too wide to fit through any door. As soon as I stopped growing so fast and started to level off on the charts - before I was even 14 - I started to forget the supergrowth paranoia and got into just plain being paranoid - about girls and whether or not they'd like me. Before too long, I had a lot of good friends in high school and I was pretty decently happy. But I never stopped gaining weight. And it never became an issue, really. I'm pretty athletic - I go hiking and climbing and stuff a lot. I was an active Boy Scout for the whole of my teenage years. Lots of fluctuations in fattiness. But I can think of four extremes in my life when I was pretty much a big fatty and not so much. I was a fat kid. Definitely. When I was about five, though I was a lot taller than the other kids my age, too, I was, for some reason, definitely too fat. I have absolutely no memory of being really ridiculed for it. I was on a soccer team pretty soon after and thinned up a bit. Then I was eleven and there's a picture of me at the beach with my brothers and cousins. We all look pretty hefty, sure, all the boys in my immediate family, but it's real clear that not only was I the biggest, I was also the fattest and my belly hangs right down onto my thighs in that picture. Cue the crazy roller coaster of puberty. I never have been as thin ever in my life, I think, as I was for a month or two in 7th grade when I was growing freakily fast and eating pounds a day like a mad devil when I got home from school. I never was really thin, though. And as I stopped growing up eventually, I've never stopped growing... even though high school was up and down in every crazy way. The superfreedom of the summer after I graduated from high school saw me hanging out with friends every night, practically, and always eating as much as I could at every joint and every occasion, period. I got to be 300 lbs for the first time then. I'm 6'5", so that's not as huge as it is, fat-wise, on some people, but no one ever made fun. And, even though I lost a lot of weight in college - especially in my freshman year (the Freshman Minus Fifty instead of the Freshman Fifteen, pretty much), I've never gotten anything like thin. And the fourth big fatty moment is pretty much right now and this past year. I'm probably nearly 350 lbs. I don't want to know exactly. My waist on my pants is 50" - finally I'm a true fat guy. And I still feel totally comfortable except for the fact that I know it's not healthy. I'm not only bigger than my Dad now, something that's been the case off and on since I was sixteen or seventeen, I'm just plain big. And I'm totally used to it. And I finally feel like, despite everything I've tried to keep it from happening, I'm not a just a big fat kid anymore - I'm a fat man. And it's fine. But I might just as well have been made fun of a lot for it growing up, cause I kind of want it to hurt more. I'm not even sure if this diet I'm starting is going to be anything new at all. I get lots of exercise. I totally recommend that to absolutely anyone. But I love to eat so much that I can't tell you how strange ambivalence over something so popularly frustrating as fatness is. I think I may have grown up just fine, but I think I might just as well have been tortured a bit. I always wonder what would have been better. I make great money, have great friends and great lovelife. I intend to raise my future kids to do whatever it takes to be happy.

 
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From: Anonymous
This is my story...

 

I've never been that fat you know, but I still felt it because of the way society seems to be these days. My childhood experience always seemed to have the recurring theme of exclusion. Always being left out and always knowing that certain things in life were not open to me because of my appearance. Always knowing love and comfort that you really need if you're overweight is closed to you because of that very fact. I always felt that no one would ever love me and that I just shouldn't expect it since it wasn't something I actually deserved.
I was interested to read about the other stories that included beautiful skinny girls in them, making other people's lives a misery. I had a few of those. They seemed to have been put there by some higher power to take away the boys I liked at school and then later the men I liked. That's the worst thing because although you can tell they're stupid or just dull or whatever, and you know you're a way better person than they are, you also understand why the men are going for them and believe that you're not as entitled as they are to happiness.
Life is very lonely when you've got the constant burden of your appearance hanging over your head and making your feel like you don't even deserve the comfort you need. So after losing the weight, and now battling to keep it off, I think the only solution to the depression is to find others in your own situation, gain strength and support from them, and together, try to lose the weight. I think it's an important thing to do because it isn't about conforming, it's about being healthy in the long run and it's a very freeing experience to not be constantly aware of what you look like. Because once you reach a normalish weight, you stop thinking about it so much I reckon. It's hard and it'll take time but I think if you face it, that's a much better thing to do than live your life running away from it when you know you'll never escape it without a fight.

 
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From: Charity
This is my story...

 

I just wanted to write to all of the people who have posted their stories on this site. I grew up with a mother who was overweight and struggled with it for my entire life. She tried all the diet pills, drugs, and was treated for bulimia and anorexia. I see what an awful struggle it can be for a person. I have never had a weight problem nor have my 3 sisters but I have lived it through my mother. We are an extremely close family and live within 5 miles of eachother still so I could feel a lot of her pain. I just wanted to say that everyone is a child of God and we are all so special to him no matter what we look like or how much we weigh. Be happy, enjoy your life! My mom spent so much time worrying about being fat that her life was hell. She now weighs less than me and exercises daily. We are all vegan (we don't eat any animal products) and I know that this has been an incredible blessing to us. All of us have children and have gained some weight with pregnancy but I know that because we are vegan and we exercise we were able to lose the weight and be healthy. I just want to encourage everyone to be happy and try to find the wonderful things in your life and if you don't have any, find some! Life is wonderful and I wish you all the best of luck in yours.

 
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From: ChUnKy MuNkY
This is my story...

 

well you i've been fat for as long as i can remember but i could care less i'm happy with my life even though people say if i lost weight i would be so beautiful i dont care about being beautiful i've been skateboarding since i was 4 snowboarding since i was 7 and thats what makes me happy i've won many awards for those extreme sports and i've also won awards for playing the drums in a small band i'm in. people love me for who i am cuz i'm hilariously funny and i'm sumwhat cool so my fellow fat people dont feel bad for yourself

 
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From: Kimberly
This is my story...

 

I am known to all of my EX-FRIENDZ as fatty.I am fat and tall.Many ppl dont consider me fat because i am taller than every1 and u dont see much fat.I am an 11 year old who is 165lbs and 5'8.I am sad when ever i reread the things in my diary about ppl calling me fat and about me wanting to kill myself b/c of it.I am afraid i will turn out like my sister huge and lazy.I am really active and stuff i am no couch potato or n e thing.Well u see at school i am afraid of doing anything whether its walking down the hallway or reading a paper infront of my class i am afraid i will get made fun of b/c i am so fat and i get depressed over it too,i mean just because i am fat makes me depressed,sick,and suicidal.I think to myself that me being as young as i am shouldnt think about them things...but i do and cant stop it i think killing myself will be the best thing it will stop every1 from making fun of me.

 
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From: Shannon
This is my story...

 

I just sat here for an hour, reading the stories that others ahve submitted. Boy do they all sound familiar. I was a fat toddler, child, and now adult. My whole family is obese, so I always felt comfort arount them. They supported me, no matter what. School and friends were a different story. The first "fat" think i remember is in 4th grade. My teacher used to comment on how fat i was all the time. She made my life hell, but i refused to give in. All A's and B's that year. After that, there was always someone picking on me. I always had one or two friends, but in the back of my mind, i always wondered if they were really my friends, or were they just hanging out with me so they looked better. 7th grade- when i would walk down the hall, some of the older boys would moo at me. God that hurt. In high school, the older boys (again) would do things like grab my butt as i would walk down the hall, or say things that i will not repeat in here (children may see it). Fast forward to now. I am amrried to a wonderful man. He is also fat, but i dont see it. I see a wonderful man. I have always wanted to be the girl that everyone wanted to know, wanted to date, or at least, the girl that people thought was attractive. I dont like going anywhere new, because i am not sure how people will react. Just last month, I had 2 kids (teens) harrass me at a mall near my work. It brought back so much of my past, that i was in histarics when i called my husband. Crying on the phone, i told him what happened. He was upset, or course, but no matter how many times he told me i was beautiful, it didnt make me feel better. What worked, though, (lol) was a male co-worker of mine told me that i was never to go to that mall without him again. He would go, and beat up anyone that even looked at me wrong. Of course, he wouldnt do that, but to know that someone would stick up for me was one of the most wodnerful feeling i had ever had. My husband and I are trying to have a baby now. I want to lose weight, so tht it will be easier to conceive, but my husband tells me not to worry. My childhood years as a fat kid were rough, and my adult years as a fat woman are rough, but with the support of my husband, family, and the friends i have, I feel that I may survive. Thank you for letting me reamble, and please, disgregard any typos...lol

 
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From: Plump
This is my story...

 

It concerns me to read about the young people who want to loose weight. I understand I was there once myself. I was a size 12 in the 5th grade....now at 20 years old I am 5'4 and weigh in at 137 pounds. I am not thin..but have discovered I have diabetes and must maintain a certin weight. I love my body and have come to realize that after many years of thinking negativly. My boyfriend is a bouncer (in perfect shape huge muscles and all) and loves my "plumpness". He has tought me that you don't have to be thin to be beautiful.

 
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From: Bree
This is my story...

 

I am the kind of girl who is not that fat, but is still fat compared to everyone else. When I go out shopping with friends they always go into the small petite rows of all 0 pairs of jeans. But i have this one friend who is very unique in a way. She is one of the most popular girls in the school too. She tells me practiculy everything, which is good but in a way bad. She knows i am fat, but she won't say it. i even say to her face "i am fat, i really need to loose weight" and she always says no your not fat. which makes me feel good. But then i know she is only saying this so that she doesn't make me feel bad. you see se has these 2 other good friends that are also fat. one is heavier then me and she also says to me "got Lau*** is sooooo fat i can't believe her parents let her get that big, she will never loose weight even if she trys with all her might" then she says about her other friend who is the same size as me "well *ri**a is not as big as Lau*** but she is still big, she really needs to loose weight" and i am like HELLO why don't you just say it to my face then!!!!!!!! i mean how dumb is that!!! well i am trying to loose weight cause i really want to fit in!!!! i lost 3-4 pounds soo far, i was once 140 and now 136-137 and my goal weight is 115!!!!! and i am in 8th grade! this is my story about ME NOWW

 
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From: Little One
This is my story...

 

It all started when I was really little. Probably preshool. Looking back at old photos and pictures... I'm not what would be considered fat nowadays by any standards at that age. But back then, being overweight at age 4 or 5 was much more rare, especially in a rural community where kids still ran free and played outside all day long. I was very short for my age, but very, very muscular, making me look "fat" and I had a little bit of a belly. Let's just say I took after my Italian father.

I played sports, little league and soccar and yet the belly stayed, and the other children were quick to let me know that they noticed.

The real torment started in grade school. Whether the other children really thought I was fat or not is irrelevent at this point becase at age 5 I was by no means fat. The fact is that being called "fat" bothered me a lot at that age and I let it show. My weakness came through and the other children, like a pack of wild jackals pounced on it like a dying Antelope. I was an out of towner in a school full of townies, I was extremely short and had a little pot belly. A recipe for teasing. Even my own brother joined the fray. In the end even though I wasn't fat I believed I was. I also believed that I had no worth and that nothing would ever change that. I had no friends and no one to talk to. Even my own mother was too self absorbed to help me. When I told her that the other kids were picking on me and that it hurt me she just told me to "ignore it. their opinion doesn't matter" While this is TRUE it is awfully hard for a child with no friends to really trully believe this.

So finally I found a friend. Food. And boy did I visit that friend a lot and my parents did nothing to moderate my eating. All junk food was available to me any time I wanted it. I could come home from school and eat ten twinkies and my mother wouldn't utter a peep. As the weight piled on, so did the self hatred and loathing.

Junior high rolled around and I was pretty big. Not sure how big at that point. I would say maybe 150lbs maybe, but I was still short, at least a foot shorter than everyone else, minimum. The picking intensified. I joined the band... and the sad thing is that we all know that the band is full of outcasts and even they picked on my to make themselves feel better. There was no end. I was threatened, teased, tricked, humiliated, everything you can imagine, and more.

By my junior year of high school I was 4'10" and weighed 175 lbs. I had no lap. I was obese. On the night of my junior prom I put on a dress and my dad said, "Well now you don't look quite so fat, you almost look like a girl even" It was meant to be a compliment and at that point my frayed tortured mind even took it as one. I didn't have a date for the prom originally, but a "pal" of mine fixed me up with one at the last minute. I should have run screaming. Long story short, it was the most horrible night of my life. I went to the junior prom with the Marlboro man. I had hit rock bottom.

Then something happened. I lost weight. I lost about 30 lbs over the months of december and january my senior year and I looked quite a bit better. Some of the teasing even dropped off. Evne with this lull, my sense of self esteem didn't budge and my self worth didn't increase.

I went to college. Spent the first year in hiding, believing that by doing so no one would notice me and there would be no opportunities for my feelings to be hurt. Eventually during my sophomore year I made friends, but I was never really socially involved. They were nice and we hung out, but I held back and out of the main circle out of fear and a feeling that they didn't really like me, they were just hanging out with me out of pity.

Then, a diet. I lost a lot of weight and got in really good shape. I was no longer obese, but I was still over weight. I weighed 132 lbs at 4'10". I had boyfriends. But.... I still hated my self.

Today I weigh 120 lbs and decreasing (I'm on a diet) I'm 24 years old and I'm getting married in less than a year... but you know what? I'm still the fat girl. I still have he mantality and it is obviuos that no matter how much weight I lose the self loathing will always be there. I'm hyper critical of my looks and I still call myself fat even though, by most accounts of other people, I am merely chubby and soon I will probably be extremely average. I pcik on every part of my body and am never satisfied. One would think that someone who had lost 55 lbs and kept it off would have something to be happy about. I have managed to lose the weight out of an effort that was mainly aimed at changing how I feel about myself. As it turns out, I don't think thats possible. I can get skinny on the outside, but now I'll always be fat on the inside. Now when I look in the mirror and get irritated over the stretch marks that litter the landscape of my body, they serve as a reminder of everything bad. Not just of the teasing, but of the time I wasted in college keeping to myself when people really did want to know me and they really did want to hang out with me.

My fiance loves me as I am. He loves me at this weight, at any weight. I wish I could take lessens from him so I could learn to love me too. Slowly maybe I'll get there...

 
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From: Anonymous
This is my story...

 

I am "obese" in a matter of speaking. I am a Freshman girl in highschool im 5'3 and i weigh 250 pounds. as a kid i was always made fun of by everyone except for one realy nice boy who went to my school...well now that "boy" is my boyfriend and he loves me so much. hes no slim jim himself at about 5'7 160 but hes really buff (on the football team) and now noone calls me names cuz he is really popular and my bf. if anyone calls me names, he "takes it to them" if you know wut i mean...im happy and comfortable the way i am

 
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From: Deborah
This is my story...

 

I was born in 1953. Photos of me as a baby and toddler, and through first grade, show a normal-weight, slender child. By third grade, I had gained an enormous amount of weight; I remember wearing a loose-fitting "mumu" to school and being asked by a classmate if I was pregnant.
My mother and other female relatives started going to a "weight doctor" when I was nine. My mother took me along, and each week we weighed in and were handed the week's box of pills. It was only many years later that I realized these were primarily amphetamines. To my mother's credit, when she saw that I was shaking, nervous and crying for no reason, she took me off the pills.
An area that still bothers me for young women is that NO ONE explains to girls that as they go through puberty they WILL gain weight. Regardless of what weight they are as they enter puberty, Mother Nature will see to it that they gain weight in order to develop hips, breasts and sufficient extra resources needed to carry a baby to term. Knowing that this will happen and that it is completely natural might help a little bit with the weight obsessions that so many young teenagers acquire.

 
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From: Cindy
This is my story...

 

I was reading the stories of he overweight people and children, funny thing it was my father who made me feel so fat most of my life, and I am not fat. The most I ever weighed as a teen and early 20's was 128.
I am 5'2 and carrie the weight well. My father copied a picture from a medical journal of an obese woman and pasted my face on her body and put it on the fridge. I was never more humiliated than that in my entire life, it stayed there for almost a year. My father made me feel fat and ugly. I am grown, with 4 children, when my first child was born and myfather cameto see her his eyes shined, he wasso proud, I looked him in the eye at that moment and told him if he ever ever said anything mean or urtful to my children, he would have to deal with me. He never has. He never made me loose weight by his words or remarks and he still tries to make fun of me but I just look at him and smile and say Dad I am alot like you, but much nicer. I am not overweight, 3 of my children are but never ever would I ever call them fat or ugly. And it doesn't mean they will stay that way, my oldest son lost all his weight when he turned 15, all kids usually ain weight around 9 till around 11 or 12, then they stop gaining and start growing taller ans grow into their weight. My oldest is 18 she is lovely and overweight a good 75 lbs, but we have discussed this and told her 'If you are happy within yourself that is all that matters, you are old enough to decide how you choose to eat, the pro's and cons. People can be so very cruel, it is sad..believe in who you are, no that you are a good person .names hurt and trust me even as you grow up there will always be somebody that will put you down. but thats not your problem,it is their problem
they don't feel good about who they are. Stand tall be proud, and the next time someone calls you a name say
"And your point is?" Trust me it works every time.

 
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From: fat no more
This is my story...

 

I just want to thank all of you for sharing your stories. I was a fat kid as well, and often had thoughts of suicide. Even now, as an adult in my late 20's, I suffer the after effects of being a fat kid growing up in an unaccepting society. I'm bulimarexic (anorexic with bouts of bulimia) and am haunted by the memories of the past; the whispers, the snickers, the looks of disgust on the faces of others, and of course the physical abuse by the other kids. It really never goes away, does it? Anyway, being here and reading all of your stories makes me feel as if I'm no longer alone, which is quite a change considering that I spent my entire childhood alone. Thank you, and the best of wishes to all of you.

 
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From: anonymous
This is my story...

 

I started reading these stories because I was in a sad mood and felt like connecting with others. I recently met a really cool guy online and we totally hit it off...until we met in person and he found out that I was fat. I didn't want to tell him online, because I knew that he'd probably not even consider meeting me. I'm 20 and I've never had a boyfriend (just a lot of guy friends, my fellow fat girls know how that is). I thought maybe this guy would be the exception, he seemed so "open-minded", but he's been ignoring me online, so I guess I get the hint. Well anyway, I started to lose some more weight (i lost 70 pounds a few years ago. Maybe I'll see what life is like on the other side. As shallow as it may be, it would be nice to have a guy check me out.

 
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From: Emmy
This is my story...

 

I was a skinny kid until I was about seven. Then someone discovered that I wasn't eating lunch. School lunches were really gross, and I simply didn't want to eat them, but it was ages before anyone told my mother. When they did, she started to send me to school with a packed lunch, and that was when the weight started to pile on. So, at the one time in my life when I was thin, I was consistently missing one meal a day. Anyone who ever wants to tell me I 'could' eat healthily and be thin might like to bear that in mind.

I don't recall getting teased much at primary school (I'm in the UK) until I turned nine. I had boobs by then, and an aunt took me out and got me my first bra. It was more comfortable than a vest, but then I'd get the other kids pointing and laughing when we got changed for games, and the boys flicking the strap through my clothes when they passed me in class. In spite of the fact that Brownies are supposed to be kind to others, I got teased there too. When we went on Pack Holiday, I was accused of being lazy and used to get some of the other girls steal the underwear from my linen bag and throw it round the room after lights out. Also they'd try to make sure if there were games, I got put in a position where I'd have to do something physically humiliating. There was something called the Monkey Race - you had to raise yourself on your hands and feet, facing upwards - kind of difficult to describe, there's a yoga position like that - and THEN move yourself along in that position. Difficult and ungainly even for a thin kid, and your skirt would ride up showing your underwear. I would always get put forward for that race, and I'd try to make surreptitiously go missing so as not to have to do it and get laughed at.

By the time I was at secondary school, I was 5'5" and 140, and a British size 14. Not huge then, about average, but I still got tormented over it. We had to wear tiny little short skirts for gym, which was bad enough, but the school had to get them by mail order so we all had to line up and be measured by the gym teachers. They both took a dislike to me at that point, and from then on would take pleasure in forcing me beyond my limits - climbing ropes, or doing the circuit when I was almost passing out from horrendous menstrual cramps. (I suffered these a LOT back then. My mother and the school thought it was 'just part of being a girl' so it never got checked out and I could never get a note to get out of gym. Much later when I went on the Pill, the cramps vanished and have never returned.)

Also, there was dance class. I took an interest in ballet from the age of about 11 and went to local classes. I was the second fattest girl there, but I loved dancing. Then I realized that one of the girls, who went to my school, was snickering in the back room with her stage mother over how I looked in pink tights. Eventually, this went all round my school and I was having snide comments made to me by other skinny ballet girls. The crunch came when it was exam time, and me and the other fat girl got put down a grade. I thought there was genuinely something wrong with my dancing, although they'd said nothing before and I'd been there months - then, just as THAT grade was due for an exam, it happened again. Then that went round my school too, and it came out that the teachers didn't want fat girls spoiling their lineup in the eyes of the examiners. I made my excuses and left.

I also desperately wanted a dance part in the school play. One year they picked a play with dance parts, and I was eager to audition, so I asked the gym teachers, who organized that side of things, when it was going to be. She said they were going to organize it and they'd let everyone know. A few months later, a list of the people rehearsing the dances came out. I asked when the audition had been, and I was told they'd decided not to have one, just picked the people they 'knew' were good dancers. Needless to say, the people they picked were all thin - and most of them knew me, knew how much I'd yearned to be in that play, and were laughing in my face about it.

I remember asking my mother if I could go on a diet when I first started getting fat, but she said it was just puppy fat and I'd lose it later. Later on when I was still 'big' in her eyes, she turned round and started blaming me for overeating and sitting too much. She was always saying how chunky my thighs were, how I should walk five miles a day, how I was definitely going to get diabetes when I was older, and how men don't marry women who don't look nice, or they leave them if they 'let themselves go'. I never had many boyfriends, but I honestly believe it was more down to lack of confidence than anything else. I was sent to an all-girls' school, taught to regard men as sort of alien beings, I was painfully shy and I think I was kept deliberately naive about sex and relationships (my mother said after my divorce that she'd never expected me to get married!). I was taught that if you looked nice the boys just naturally flocked to you, and that the fact they didn't 'proved' how awful I looked. When I did gain confidence a little later, I was over-demonstrative enough that I frightened guys away. I wish I'd had someone actually guide me through that whole emotional minefield, and tell me that how I looked actually wasn't that bad. Because it really wasn't.

I hate the expression 'Children can be so cruel', by the way. They learn their cruelty from adults. The fact that teachers were behind a lot of my persecution tells you that, but I've also been bullied for my weight in my adult working life. I had a whole office of people who'd previously been friendly to me ostracize me once when two new girls started and decided they didn't like the fat girl. They referred to me openly on the phone, in earshot, as 'that thing'. And they once planned a lavish Christmas party for everyone in the office - barring me, the boss and one older lady - but under our noses so we all knew what was going on. The boss was also fat, and also the brunt of their 'humor' - they used to call her names, make up sexual rumors about her and go through her bag when she was in the bathroom - but because they'd made up lies about me, she believed the bullying I was receiving was my own fault, and nothing was done about it until they left.

And speaking of adults who should know better, my mother has still, all through my adulthood, continued to pick at my self-esteem and tell me how fat I am. She has always been very thin. My adult build takes after my dad, who was bigger. I'm not quite sure what she expected, but get the impression I was 'supposed' to be thin and dainty and live on air, with the occasional ice-cream sundae (she's the real refined sugar freak!). But then, she's one of those people for whom nothing I do is ever good enough, so I steer clear of her as far as possible.

I'm 39 now. I eat healthily. I don't take as much exercise as I could, but I'm working on that. I have a good job, a wonderful husband who loves me exactly as I am, and plans for the future. I'm a size 18, and I don't know how much I weigh because I refuse to have scales in the house. And my heart goes out to all of you poor kids - past and present - who've been hated, reviled and persecuted merely for being fat. Many of you have had it far worse than me. I want to give you all a big hug and the reassurance that you are beautiful, worthy people, that you are stronger and braver than anyone could know, and that there has to come a time when we no longer allow this kind of hatred to continue.

 
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From: Anonymous
This is my story...

 

I was "fat" all my life, and was my older brother's been fat since 3rd grade, too. All my family was overweight except for my dad. And so's my best friend, Alicia.
But one time in 4th grade, I had the 2nd worst day of my life. (The 1st one's a different story, it has nothing to do with me being fat or anything)
But anyway....
This was Girl Scouts, believe it or not.
One of our leaders Mrs. Smith's grandmother died, so she didn't feel like having a lesson with us. And then she told us we could play outside for the whole meeting.
There were 7 girls in the troop, including me. There were two twin girls, Susan and Beatrice. Susan was the bratty one who always complained. Beatrice was the "nicer" one apparently.
There was also Tina, who I liked and was nice to me.
Then there was the most memorable one, Gail. I was best friends with her for years until that year she was soooo nasty to me. She was a brat, too.
Then there was Christi who was really quiet.
And finally, there was Zoey. Everyone hated her, and she cried at EVERY SINGLE MEETING for what the other girls, especially Gail, said to her. She stood up for herself, or at least she tried to. And when I went to Girl Scouts, it was me, Gail, Zoey, and the other leader, Mrs. McDonanld. (Gail's mom)
But anyway, we go to a church thats right next to Susan and Beatrices' house. She has a golden lab dog, Fluffy. And I am scared of dogs.
She had this tire swing that each girl took turns on. This is the worst part.
Finally, it was my turn. I was able to get on the swing, when all of a sudden, Fluffy started going crazy. He ran around and around and starting bumping into the tire swing. He almost knocked me off.
I was terrified. I screamed as loud as I could, and Mrs. Smith's husband ended up taking the dog away.
After that, I saw some of the girls staring at me and whispering.
I walked up to the stump where Zoey was sitting. She was the only one who wasn't doing anything. I asked her if they talk about me, and she said "Yes." And then she told me all of the mean things that they called me like "Fatty" or "Fatty Girl".
I was crushed. I didn't cry until I went home and started sobbing as soon as I saw my mom.
I never went to Girl Scouts ever again that year.

 
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From: Nanasha
This is my story...

 

I think it started out with the "Chubby Cheek Contest" when I was a baby. I had huge chubby cheeks. My mom always told me how I looked like a china doll as a baby. When I got older, I never really paid attention to food or what I ate. I remember that my mom was very strict about licking the beaters when we made cookies (a rare occurance). Overall, when I was a child, I was a "chubby" kid but never fat, and always active. However, I started developing breasts around the 5th grade and I thought that it was fat. I was terribly embarrassed about them and used to wear huge formless t-shirts which made me feel like I was much fatter than I was. To compound it, my mom was this thin little blond woman who always did these exercise tapes, and she encouraged me to do them too. I always thought that they were silly, but she praised me every time I did it with her, so I felt that I was "good" for doing it. We were from a "clean plate club" sort of family, where my mom would make food from scratch and make us eat the whole thing. It wasn't until I was in junior high or high school that my mom started treating me like I was fat and unattractive, and I believed her. I believed that I was disgusting and horrible and that I should just kill myself. That was around the time where I broke my arm, which laid me up in the hospital for a long time. The reason I broke my arm in the first place was because I was on the top of the bunk bed thinking about how fat and gross I was and how no one would (or could) love someone like me...and then the railing fell out from behind me and I fell backwards, twisting and snapped my arm in half. After the surgery (I had severed a nerve and needed several), I still hated myself, but I vowed to add more activity to my regimen. I also started journaling my day to day activities. There are a LOT of entries about my fears and hatreds revolving around my self image and fatness. To me, the idea of being fat was coupled with feelings of anxiety and fear of not being loved or being attacked. In response to this (or perhaps despite this) I became a very strong and outspoken person who always stood up for my friends, especially if they were shy or less able to speak for themselves. I always had a huge amount of friends, even though I hated myself because I felt that even though I was fat, I should not bring up the fact that I was fat to everyone else because it would just bring them down. So I started biking everywhere, and I joined various sports. I also took PE for every year of high school, even though I was not required. I always gave it 110% and the boys would always want me on their team (unlike the other girls) because I tried hard and pushed myself even though I was fat by my standards (no matter what I did, my mom always said I could always lose 10 pounds). I realize now that I wasn't fat as much as I was just sorta chunky. I was never a bikini babe, but I was mostly muscle and large breasted (which made me very self conscious). I had a few boyfriends here and there, but most of them were verbally abusive or manipulative...strangely enough, they never used my weight against me. As I got out of high school, I gained more weight, mostly because I moved out of my parent's house and started living with my grandmother who always wanted me to eat. Unfortunately, I didn't practice much portion control and since my parents had so severely restricted me from eating candy or sweets, I ended up eating a lot of stuff that was not so good for me and then added that up with rigorous exercise (mostly biking) and starving myself. On top of that, I was finally pressured into getting a car, and I'm sure that contributed to a lot of my weight gain as well. I was on the pill for awhile, and kept gaining weight slowly but steadily. When at my peak exercise and fitness in high school, I was around 150 pounds of well defined muscle and a little flab (mostly boob); a stocky girl. Then I got pneumonia and couldn't move around for a few months. I gained about 10 pounds and thought that I was a blimp. My mother hated me for gaining weight, especially since she used to be so proud of me for being 150 ("you only have to lose 10 or 20 more pounds" she said). After gaining that weight, she punished me by not going shopping with me. She would also encourage me to starve myself. She put me on this "calorie restrictive diet" where I had to count calories and record them in a diary. Of course, she told me to eat healthy, but I didn't know anything about nutrition, so I just looked at the calories on packages. I ended up eating a candy bar or two and then skipping meals for the rest of the day because I wanted to "save calories". When I turned 18, I was on birth control pills, I was around 160 and steadily climbed until I was over 200 pounds. It got worse when I moved away to go to four year college after the junior college. I was expected by my parents to pay for all living expenses, and I could barely make rent, so I'd starve and starve, eating canned vegetables that were left over from welfare recipients, and hotdogs. Then I met a guy in college who wanted to date me, but I ended up using him as my food contact. He'd let me into the all you can eat dining hall and I was so hungry from not eating much at all for weeks and weeks that I'd gorge myself like I wasn't going to eat for the rest of my life. I went to the doctor once around that time and my triglycerides were over 500. He tried putting me on medication, but it made me sick, so I stopped. I encountered a bunch of lectures from him and the nurses about my lifestyle. However,I didn't have the money or the ability to afford to do the drastic exercise and diet changes that he was proposing and felt that my only option was to just stop going to the doctor to avoid being lectured about stuff I couldn't do anything about. During this time of my life when I was around 200 pounds, I was the most desired that I'd ever been by the guys around me. I had 2 boyfriends at the same time (both of which were ok with it) and two or three other guys who wanted to date me. It seemed beyond my comprehension that they could find me sexy, but I defined myself sexually as a "perverted person who had sexual skills". So, really, instead of being afraid that guys wouldn't like my body, I just assumed they liked me because I was so willing to try new stuff and was very dominant. A lot of the time I would try to imagine a better body superimposed over my own while I was being sexual. It helped me to forget how I actually looked and act "sexy" in a way that didn't make me feel foolish.
All this time, though, I would go home to visit my family from time to time and my mom would give me periodic "serious talks" about how fat I was getting. She tried to get me to join Weight Watchers, get weight loss hypnotism, anything so she wouldn't have to have a fat daughter. Not long after this, she developed a "mysterious" allergy to all dairy and lost a massive amount of weight. To this day, I'm fairly sure she's simply lying about it, and it's a throwback to her bout with bullemia and anorexia. My father, on the other hand, would slip money to me when I was leaving in my car. He must have known how hard it was to be a starving student. He never treated me badly because of my weight. I think that's one reason I moved over 2 hours away to go to college; I wouldn't have to talk to or interact with my mom, who always played the fat card with me and always made me feel bad for being myself. She would buy things in sizes too small for me and then say "I know this might be too big for you, but...."

This continued until around this year (meanwhile I got married and my mom sort of cooled off with the "no one will ever love a fat person like you" lectures). I recently got health insurance with a new job and the doctor said my blood pressure was borderline. She took me off hormonal birth control and my blood pressure went to normal. Other blood work showed that I had higher cholesterol, so I worked on that for awhile and the LDL went down to normal too. I started biking everywhere instead of driving once again, and I started controlling my portions a lot more and making sure my foods were as minimally processed as possible. I still enjoy treats from time to time, but I try to limit them because I want to see if my body is supposed to be this weight or if it's due to what I'm putting in it. The doctors are currently confirming a diagnosis of PCOS. I have very high testosterone even though I'm a woman, and my periods are very irregular again, like before I was on the Pill. I'm still around 232, but I've lost about 20 pounds after getting off the Pill without really trying to. I refuse to do a food diary ever again, even though the doctor tells me to, because it makes me crazy and then I start binging or using calories to eat unhealthy things, so I work on eating hearty vegetable soups, small servings of meat, and control my portions, and for now, that's good enough.

As soon as I told my family about the PCOS diagnosis, they started accepting me more. They felt that since there is a medical reason for my gross fatness, that it's somehow more acceptable because it's "not my fault". I had to fight tooth and nail to finally get the doctors to test me for it and stop giving me the "you're just a lazy fat person" lecture, and I've mostly had to do the research myself (educating myself on endocrine disorders like thyroid problems, cushings, etc) to figure out that due to my symptoms, PCOS fits the definition the best (but I did have them do bloodwork to rule out hypoactive thyroid or cushings). I know that there's still a long way to go as a person, and that I'm still not happy with myself, but I am hoping to work to get my condition under control, and once I get to that place, I don't think I'll care as much about my body size as I will care about what I can do with my body. At the size I am at, I can do hard riding up hills and long distances for hours. I can lift a lot of weights. I eat good and healthy foods that I prepare myself and with my husband. We enjoy a good life together, and we are very happy. I would like to have children of my own, but due to the hormonal problems, I am currently unable to conceive (or at least have a low chance of it). I am worried that if I do have a child that he or she might have a genetic predisposition to obesity, but I know that one of the things that I have learned the most from my own childhood is that the most important clues about how much worth you attribute to body size comes from how someone treats themselves and how they model behaviors. I think that if I can show them that I am strong and athletic and loved very much by so many people even though I'm fat, that it will help them to feel good about themselves regardless of size. The only big fear I have is about my mom instilling the fear of fat in them. Looking back, I realize that I thought that so many people knew the "answers" about why I was wrong, bad and fat, but I finally realize that in reality, they were the ones with the distorted perceptions, which in turn distorted my perceptions and really caused a lot of doubt and depression in my youth. I don't doubt that I would have killed myself if I didn't start journaling and keep myself active in sports and music. I also attribute the large group of friends that I always seem to have (for some reason, even though internally I don't understand why someone would want to be around a fat person like me) and the large amount of male admirers that I often seem to have (and these guys aren't freakish fat-person fetishists either!) along with my Nonnie (grandmother) and my dad, as well as my sister and brother (both of whom are normal sized but who I helped raised to a great degree while my mom was going through various weird stages in her life). I've always labeled myself as "fat" while pussyfooting around the word. I think that it says a lot about what I think about myself. I'm fat, but I try not to think about it. I try to envision myself thorugh my mind's eye as this other person, this acceptable person, and distance myself from my body to some extent by saying "this body is my vehicle, so I need to take care of it, but beyond that, I shouldn't be vain or overly proud of it."

I guess that's something I've taken away with me from my years of knowing that I am a Fat person and therefore gross. But since I am somehow loved very much, I can live with myself. Because that tells me that if I can be loved, then my weight must not be nearly as important as I think that it is.

 
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From: Mixed-race mutt
This is my story...

 

I was twelve when I realized I wasn't white.

It wasn't as if I couldn't see my father's brown skin and ink black hair; I just never really thought about the fact that I had it too. I grew up in a small, rural town; with white friends.

When I watched those princess movies I never had any problem beleiving that when I grew up I would look like Cinderella,

Or Sleeping Beauty

Even Belle would have been okay.

When, in middle school, my own ethnicities hit me like a lead brick, I felt as though I had been cheated out of a prize. That day I felt like I was doomed.

After that revalation I noticed other things too; my coarse,thick hair, my wide feet, my brown eyes. And my fat. MY FAT. It was no longer the cute baby fat that would magically give way to that banging hourglass figure. I was fat; I had a fat ass and now no one would love me.

I woke up every morning and wished I had been born blonde and blue eyed. My best friend was the epitome of beauty, so close and yet so far.

It wasn't fair

It still isn't fair

Fat and brown; I felt like I was being punished. I was smart; I tried hard in school and yet I didn't look like the pretty girls.

I have accepted it now; done research on my father's culture and looked at all the women of color.

I think they're beautiful...

Maybe I am too.

 
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From: Dovey
This is my story...

 

My story sort of goes backward from the usual. I'm 62 years old, but not so long ago, I was a kid of 6, 7, 8, 10, 12, 16 and so on. I was a skinny kid, not skeletal, but slim. My grandparents and aunt called me "killeer legs" because my legs were long and skinny. I had growing spurts which all kids do. I was pretty much slim until I was in my mid-fifties for the most part. - Gradually over the years, my weight crept up until now I'm at 172 lbs. at 5'5". I've noticed most everyone on here is very young. When one is still growing, the body needs good nutrition in order to grow beautifully - salads, soups, whole grain breads, eggs, meat, poultry, and that sort of food. . and we also need a bit of dessert once or twice a week lest we get so hungry for a treat that we end up bingeing from the deprivation. If one starves themselves, they end up just killing their metabolism because when we go on a starvation diet, our bodies go into "starvation" mode and actually burn fewer and fewer calories - making any weight lost much easier to regain because of the ruined metabolism. - One of the best people I know of on the subject of "Non-Dieting" is Geneen Roth for people in their twenties, thirties and forties. She has some really good insight even though some of her thinking about social matters I differ with - but about the weight thing, she is pretty spot-on. As far as exercise, we aren't going to keep doing stuff that isn't enjoyable to us - and when we eat food that isn't enjoyable to us, we just tend to eat that and then go and raid the cookie box afterwards. (Geneen tells of one day after years of "dieting" she decided that she was going to quit starving herself to try to please others and began eating chocolate chip cookies in every form - even chocolate chip cookie dough - until she was so tired of it after about two weeks that she just naturally began craving fresh fruits, salads and good solid, sensible food. - I've pretty much been doing that for the past couple of months and have just gradually and naturally lost seven pounds. - We all need to quit agonizing about food and get up and participate, dress neatly and AS IF we are already the size we think we would like to be. We can burn calories taking even occasional short hikes, going shopping and walking around the mall, treating ourselves to a nice bath or shower with natural oils, getting an occasional massage. We don't need to obsess about the scales; just weigh maybe a couple of times a month and don't let a piece of machinery dictate what our mood will be on any given day. If someone says something rude, ignore them because they have forfeited your attention - and remember - JUST GET UP AND LIVE YOUR LIFE, and be natural and one day you're going to have shed a lot of "stuff", pounds included, but you don't have to "show" anybody anything or prove anything to anybody. Respect yourself and be happy!

From experience,
Dovey

 
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From: LMS
This is my story...

 

I don't have a story, exactly, it's more of a comment... I stumbled upon this site while researching for a paper I am writing for school. I am absolutely flabbergasted by the things you've all experienced. I want to find every one of you and give you a hug and then find every person that hurt you and punch them in the face. EVERY one of you deserves better than that. NO ONE deserves any of the things I've read that happened to you... I spoke with a friend and she shared with me things that happened to her. I'm not gong to spill them out here, because it's not my story to tell, but I am entirely disgusted with society. More so than when I started writing this stupid paper. I wish each and every one of you the best of luck. The future will hold something better for you. Just remember that you're awesome and they're the jerks.

 
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From: SamuelH73
This is my story...

 

I happened across this website and it definitely tugged at my heartstrings. I was a skinny child growing up; my parents were hippies after it was fashionable and raised us with all natural, no sugar/no fat foods. My mother and father did not use the guilt by comparison argument ("X is skinny; why can't you be?") or the belittling statement; with my mother no one, including me, was ever "good enough". It didn't matter what I did; it was "good, but it could be better". This, like the mother who subtly places you on a diet, is an insidious act that worms into your heart and soul; you may not realize what they are doing at first, but you know it is directed at you.

Eventually I came to the "realization" that I was not "good enough", and felt it best to do nothing. I was flawed, so why should I care about what I did or said...or looked? I spent many years looking terrible, eating anything that was placed in front of me without noticing it, all the while my mother fretting and clucking, wondering why I didn't care anymore (my mother is a selfish person, so it would not have dawned on her it was her actions which started it all). As my sisters and I were homeschooled, it wasn't too bad; peer pressure was unknown to us. Once we had to go to school, though...*sighs* I learned how to pick myself up, dust myself off and keep moving, all the while suffering the "slings and arrows of outrageous fortune" (or nasty kids).

I really didn't start gaining weight until I moved out; freed from my parent's dietary situation I ate sugary, fat filled stuff even more than before. I was not the only one to suffer this, though; as a result of severe depression my mother went from a thin woman to a very overweight one in the span of a few months (this was while I was still a child). My sister suffered a similar fate, even though she was active (as opposed to my mother, who did nothing but lie in bed all day). I guess I started gaining weight because of existing and developing depression (brought on by torment due to my openly professed bisexuality while I was living in Texas) and, ironically, getting married and being in comfortable surroundings (apparently, when you are in comfortable surroundings you can gain weight...I had no idea). Well, the marriage didn't work (because, surprise, I was actually gay, not bisexual) and at the age of 26 I was thrust once again into the dating world. I thought I would give it another go; after all, at this point in time I felt I needed a relationship to be happy (I have since learned that is not so). Well, it didn't quite work out that way....

The gay community is rather harsh where I am. They are highly superficial and not very kind (as well as very deep underground, given the homophobic atmosphere of Texas). My father has told me the heterosexual community is just as one dimensional and superficial (and by reading some of the terrible situations on this site, I believe it), but it is still a problem, as my dating pool is restricted a great deal more. Most gay men want thin, muscular boys, not overweight, solid men (I have a little muscle from my job, but I am certainly no Arnold). I ended up nearly committing suicide when I was 28 (one of many attempts) but at the last moment broke down and called my Dad. He and my stepmom helped me so much and were so supportive during that time. I got on medication and it really helped for a while. Unfortunately, money problems (I have no insurance) forced me to wean myself off of them (an all too common situation), but I am doing better still and my friends check on me from time to time). Ironically, the medication I took was known to enhance abdominal fat storage, so I had to choose: Be skinny and depressed or fat and relatively balanced. Tough choice.

I am gravely, deeply concerned about the number of young children (14 and younger) who are writing to this site. What does this say about our society? What does this say about people? It is a horrific, insidious disease that must be stopped somehow. If any kids are reading this, listen to what these people and these stories have to say:

It's okay. You are not alone.

I am 6'3" and 285 now; technically obese by the BMI rating (which is sort of arbitrary, I think). I don't feel or look like it, though; I have a prominent abdomen and my face is rather round, but that's it. I work in a job that demands quite a bit of walking so I am losing it a little at a time. Hopefully, I will either 1) lose the weight or 2) come to accept the fact of my weight and move on. Ultimately, I read the stories of people who are struggling with this and I understand completely...Finally a group of people who understand what I'm going through! It is a vicious little cycle, isn't it? You want people to love you, but many of them have been conditioned to equate "fat" with "unattractive" (it doesn't help that I have a face that makes a burro look pretty, and I'm being serious here. Under my list of good qualities "looks" is definitely not one of them). You see people disregard, ignore or (even worse) denigrate you, which is depressing and hurtful, which (for some) drives you to eat! I definitely eat when I am depressed or feeling sad; it is only through sheer willpower that I am able to ignore it sometimes. Yes, it is painful and agonizing...we live with it every day. It is relatively easy for me to say "Just pick yourself up and move on" because I've done it all my life; that advice may not work for you. Find the advice that suits you best and go for it.

Just remember we are all suffering from the inconsideration of not only people but society, and take strength from that.

**HUGS** to everyone who has written or will write to this website.

 
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