I remember the day that my dad told everyone that I was fat. (Okay so he didn’t just say hey look my daughter is fat but it was pretty close.)
It was during the summer break before my junior year of high school and we were visiting family in Europe. It was supposed to be an amazing trip, and it was amazing but then my dad figuratively slapped my in the face. I was sitting in the living room of my grandma’s house with my sister and cousin. My parents, grandma, and aunt were on the front porch and you can hear what they are saying from inside the living room. I got up to go get some water or go to the bathroom, who knows anymore and then I heard my dad tell my grandma that I was larger, and then he proceeded to compare me to my sister who had just gone through puberty and had lost a lot of weight. I remember feeling that blind rage and I went out there in tears and told him that he was being mean. (Truthfully it is pretty hard to remember this whole memory because I’ve tried really hard to forget it over the years.)
I remember not being able to stop crying and so my aunt told my cousin to take me and my sister out to help me cool off. My cousin took us to this dam and we sat on top of it and didn’t really talk, but it helped me to calm down and I do remember my cousin telling me not to listen to my dad that he was wrong.
It has been roughly 6 years since then and I still haven’t forgiven my dad. Don’t get me wrong, I love my dad and I think he’s a great person but this is one thing that can’t be erased or forgiven. Especially since these comments reoccur every few months or so.
The offhanded comments my dad has said to me before this whole ordeal happened, this event, and the comments since then have probably ruined my self confidence beyond repair, to a certain extent (maybe I’ll be fully healed one day). My dad would tell me to stop eating, to exercise, and to look like other girls. My dad was and is a big fan of comparing me to other people. All of my friends are smaller than me and that’s a thing that I’ve noticed because it was pointed out to me by him.
I remember another event that has made me feel extremely bad about my body, it was a day where all of my friends were over (this was probably during late elementary/early middle school), and one of my friends (who will go unnamed) saw that we had a bathroom scale in my parent’s bathroom. He them proceeded to tell each of us to stand on it to compare weights (either to compare or to just see how much everyone weighed), and I was terrified. I knew I was the biggest and I didn’t need a number on a scale to tell me that, so I didn’t do it and he called me out on it.
When you meet up with someone one of the biggest areas of conversation is pointing out weight about each other or about a mutual friend. I’ve grown up listening to my parents, relatives, and close family friends point out people’s weights to one another. It’s almost never a good thing. They will either comment about the person being too fat and then if the person loses weight they will comment about them being too skinny. You can almost do no right.
This way of thinking has been stitched into my way of thinking and the first thoughts I have when I see someone is about their weight and then I have to tell myself that is a bad way of thinking. Its something that has been in my life since I was a child so its a really bad habit to get out off but I am trying. It is also a really bad environment to grow up in because everyone is being overly critical of everyone else’s bodies. They all believe that they aren’t doing any harm but in reality they are really ruining the minds of the people around them.
My dad has this mentality and he constantly pokes at my body and the things that I do, I don’t think he understands how hurtful this comments that he makes are. It doesn’t really help to talk to him about it because he doesn’t think that he’s doing anything wrong.
How I Feel About Myself Now
I’d like to say that I’ve gotten over it but that’s not true. I have really good days where I feel very comfortable with myself but I also have days on which I’d like to just stay in bed and cry all day because I feel so bad about myself. I will still poke and prod at places on my body that I’m not happy with, I’ll attempt diets that I can never stick to because they’re crazy, and I wear clothing that covers as much of me as possible so that I can hide myself from the world.
The whole idea of faking it ’til you make it works until a certain extent. However, I’ve found that if I keep faking confidence for a bit too long than the bad thoughts, that have been locked away, come tumbling out far too fast. It doesn’t happen as often as it used to but when it does it really hurts.
Negative comments about my body still hurt me and while that is annoying as f**k it is still a part of me that I have to address. I’d like to hope that I’ll be stronger one day and that the comments won’t effect me as much as they do but that is not the case. The growing amount of body shapes being shown in the media are helping, but the negative thoughts I have about myself are still a frequent part of my life.
I do love myself and I do love my body (sometimes). I hope that I will become even more comfortable with it in the future.
Some people that help me love my body:
eatyourkimchi – Mostly Martina because she’s amazing.
Thriftthick – A beautiful woman.
Ariel Winter – The gorgeous woman from Modern Family.
Jessamyn – An amazing woman who makes positive yoga posts.