This week during therapy I told my therapist that I have been experiencing a lot of anger; sometimes quite vicious. I had no explanation for it especially considering what triggered the anger.
During the last week to week and a half I have had a rather large group of people making comments about my weight. I cannot adequately describe how upsetting these comments are or the anxiety and yes, anger that they cause.
I already wrote about my mother-in-law’s comment and the waitress’ comment. What happened after that was just too much to bear.
I went to my religious services and the same young woman who had made such a stink over my “flat stomach” previously, proceeded to come up behind me and in a loud voice (per her usual behavior as an attention-seeking yeller) she squealed and flailed about, saying that I was “wasting away” and I needed to “stop” losing weight, among other things. These statements were made dramatically and I should have lots of exclamation points behind it.
I was so thrown and embarrassed and angry, and then another woman came up behind me and said: “Are you losing weight? Because you need to stop. I mean so that I can catch up!”
The only thing I could think to say was to remind them that I had gained 100 lbs on my meds and that I needed to lose it. That shut them up for the moment.
Later the first girl, the yeller, seemed to realize that her comments could be taken as an insult so she made a point of saying that I look good and she hadn’t meant otherwise. She again repeated that she is trying to lose weight. I said something nice about her weight and dropped it.
An hour or so later we were all at someone’s house and a different woman leaned over and asked me if I was losing weight. I was so overwhelmed by this attention and comment making; I can only imagine what my face looked like as inside I was anxious and so very tired of it. I said yes and she asked the normal question, “What are you doing?” I said what was expected: diet and exercise. She wanted to know what exercise and I told her. There was another woman sitting by us and she chimed in about my weight loss. It was beyond getting ridiculous! I again mentioned that I was losing medication weight and the second woman helpfully said that she remembered when I had been skinny. W-o-w. Thanks for that you giant bitch.
Since the get-together was a meal and I hadn’t eaten anything yet, I ate one small chicken thigh and called it a day.
After telling my therapist about these incidents and my anger she wanted to explore why I got angry. I had no explanation and I’m grateful that she made some connections that I couldn’t.
I told her that when people compliment me on my weight or make these comments about it, all I can think is…“You have no idea what’s going on inside me or why I’m doing this! This isn’t a good thing. Just shut up and STOP TALKING ABOUT IT!!!!”
Again I can’t explain how much I do NOT want people to talk about it. I don’t want people to look at me or talk about me or assume that I give a shit about what they think of my body.
My therapist said that it’s like they don’t really know me. I agreed. She told me that there was a time in her life when she had experienced a loss, and she, by accident not design, lost weight. People told her how good she looked and all she could think was, ‘I’m at the worst point in my life and all you can do is judge how I look? That’s all you see?’
She got it.
Her other insight into my anger was that in the past, any methods of self-harm I had were my secret. They were hidden and no one could see them. This is different because people can see my secret…I can’t hide it and it makes me angry.
I completely agree with that. I didn’t see that until she said it.
I feel like this is so very private and so very mine that it’s beyond unforgivable for someone to intrude and say something.
My husband said that women seem to think they have a right to comment on another woman’s body. I agree.
It also adds more stress to know that people are looking at my body and noticing changes. That means that if I gain, they will notice that too. Do you know how awful it is to know that people are looking at your body and judging it? Making comments probably behind your back? It makes my jaw clench just thinking about it.
The wonderful thing is that my friend (in real life) here who knows that I am having food issues, continues to say how good I look and how people wish they could look like me and how I look like a model blah blah blah. Why would someone say that to someone they know is struggling? I don’t get that!
If you knew someone who was going through chemotherapy would you tell them how jealous you were of their weight loss? Or that you wish you didn’t have to worry about your hair either? C’mon! (I’m not equating food issues with cancer, merely pointing out behavior that would obviously be stupid)
I am floored by how many people…people who know less than zero about me…think they have a right to talk to me about my body, my life or anything else for that matter.
Yea, I’m angry.
Today I went antiquing with my “friend” and an older man commented on how tall and thin I am. He had noticed me when I walked in the incredibly large building filled with lots of people. Unnerving. And immediately after he said that, an older woman came up to me and complimented my posture and height. Jeez! What the hell!?
The annoying part is that my weight bobbled up within the last few days and I almost didn’t leave the house because I was afraid the people who are watching would notice that I got fatter. This gets better all the time.
I should add that I’m not talking about any of you. Many of you I consider to be my friends and I have no problem talking about things here. This place is different and many of you know me better than most.
So, me and my anger should probably get cozy as I don’t think that these people will change flapping their gums any time soon. I am going to tell the next person who says something that they need to mind their own business. I really hope it’s the yelling girl because I would look forward to that. That’s probably bitchy but oh well.