Note: For sure this post is going to include a photo that has the F word on it. I may swear myself. Not sure yet. We'll see. If that offends you, please skip this post. I'm also changing the names of those involved. If they choose to reveal their identities in the comments, that's okay with me. If they don't, please respect their privacy and don't search them out.
I told myself that I'm an adult. That I was just going walk away from the fight with my head held high. But I can't let it go. One specific question has been bugging me all afternoon since an ugly Facebook exchange:
At what weight did I lose my right to have an opinion?
Earlier today, Bob posted the following picture on Facebook.
When I first saw it, I didn't even read it. I just kept on going because I recognized Marilyn Monroe, and I'm not a fan at all so I figured the picture wasn't worth my brain cells. But then Bob made a comment on Twitter about how some people just don't get the point of a picture. So I gave the picture a second glance, agreed with the message and tweeted "I don't get how it's totally cool to make fat jokes but it's not okay to say a woman w/ curves is sexier than a skeleton." Little did I know I was going to get totally nailed for that one.
Bob posted my comment on Facebook and I was totally okay with that. Fred commented that fat jokes weren't okay and since they were kind of wishy-washy (in my opinion) in their Marilyn picture comments, condemning fat people for disliking skinny people but not saying anything about skinny people disliking fat people, I felt the need to defend my comment. So I did. With this:
"Music, movies, television, magazines, books, stores and advertisements all bombard us with how sexy is only skinny. And all of the above are guilty of making anyone they deem overweight the butt of the jokes. Fred, you may say it's not cool to make fat jokes, but it is most certainly acceptable and expected in society."
Another person, George, commented in agreement with Bob and myself. So Paul commented and attacked, singling out Bob and George in a very harsh, personal way saying that they hoped Bob and George never had children. The entire rant spread over a few comments and got pretty ugly. Paul used the words "fucking trolls" and "fucking sick" in the rant. Keep in mind, that no one had called out any specific person or even made allusions to someone being a skeleton. Nor had anyone used any swear words. George posted a comment in their own defense then deleted it. But I had to chime in. Not only did Paul get personal, but they called out Bob and George for a comment they didn't make. I have since deleted my comment so I might not get it exactly word for word. But this is pretty close:
"Paul - Woah, do not attack Bob and George that way. You have no right to tell them you hope they never have children. They are not the ones who made the skeleton comment, I did. I used a generic term in reference to a specific body type. As for your daughter - since I have never met her - I can't judge her (Paul brought up their daughter, no one else did). As for your comments? Pot calling the kettle black?"
Of course, Paul went on to post a comment questioning how it was okay for me to make fun of a body type but not for them to make fun of people I know. They also said "Your hatred of other women is just disturbing". Well obviously, they don't know me. They would know I hate equally. I'm a non-discriminatory hater. (Sorry, joking may be inappropriate but I can't help it.) I realized that no matter what I said, I'd be wrong. So I posted an apology to Bob: "I apologize for my comments on your timeline. It was not appropriate nor the place for such comments and I'm genuinely sorry if my behavior reflected negatively upon you." I was hoping that my apology would put an end to the rant and that hopefully Paul would feel compelled to apologize for their extremely personal attack on Bob and George.
But it didn't.
They proceeded to point out how negative and narrow minded I am, told me I don't love myself and offered to be my friend so they could show me how wrong I am. Insert eye roll here. Okay, I am sort of negative. But narrow minded? Eh, I'm not sure that's me. I give every person I meet the same fair consideration. I don't judge them based on their height, weight, race, sex, sexual preference, pet preference, whatever. And as for not loving myself? I believe I have a healthy self-awareness and love. I'm perfectly aware of what makes me fabulous and what my flaws are. Yes, I'm fat. It's not said to degrade myself. It's a fact. My weight, BMI, and clothing size will all tell you that.
And offering to be my friend to show me how wrong I am? That's not a friend. Friendship is built on common interests and support. Friends will be there to pick you up when you feel bad about yourself, they help you find the very best in yourself when you're lost in the fog. No thanks, Paul is not the friend I want.
But that brings me back to my question, at what weight did I lose the right to have an opinion?
Right or wrong, I stand beyall the comments I made today. I've said it before and I'll say it again in the future. A woman with curves is more attractive and sexier than a woman who looks like a skeleton. Am I being mean referring to some women as skeletons? Yes. But that doesn't make me a completely horrible, self-loathing person. It makes me a person with an opinion.
Why are people allowed to pass judgement on me based on my weight but I can't pass judgement on them? Tit for tat, people.
And where was Paul when my own grandfather called me fat and lazy at the weight of 220 pounds and my most active and not a single person defended me?
Where was Paul when I was 21 and a guy I was attracted to told me point blank to my face that I was too fat to be pretty at 200 pounds?
Where was Paul my senior year of high school when a girl in my English class told me no one was asking me to prom because I was too fat at 180 pounds?
Where was Paul in eighth grade when a girl pushed me against the gym changing room lockers because I couldn't do a cart wheel?
That's right. NOT THERE. Never has anyone stood up for me and defended me from bullies. NEVER. Not one single time. I've had to do it myself. So yes, I call super skinny women skeletons. I don't feel bad for it. Has anyone asked them if they feel bad for calling me fat, disgusting or gross? I have never once been the initiator and called someone a derogatory name without provocation. Is it wrong and unChristian? Yes. We're specifically told to turn the other cheek. But I don't. I stand my ground and defend myself now after years of taking shit. I'm not perfect. And I don't pretend to be. I have an opinion. A lot of times I express it. Sometimes the way I express it isn't politically correct. But damnit, I'm still allowed to have a fucking opinion. Even though I'm fat.