Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Marie Claire and Roller Coasters

Well, I wasn't going to say anything about the Marie Claire webisode but I was struck that I find it sad we are all so judgmental of each other. Who is anyone to say someone is too fat for TV or too skinny, even? I find the her apology to be a further insult as she uses anorexia as her excuse for her harsh words.

Full stop. Nope, just take responsibility and say you did it. There are plenty of women out there recovering from eating disorders that do not share your attitude. Case in point go read Katiebabs response to the post. She is eloquent and moving and most importantly honest. I am also sad that Ms Kelly is still qualifying her apology. Because I am here to tell you that even without "medical and psychological reasons" it is still damn hard to loose weight. There is no magic fat pill. No silver bullet.

Working toward weight loss is like riding a roller coaster. You get on the ride and everyone is nervous, excited maybe, and some are afraid. As the car climbs the first hill it is with great trepidation and angst the you move forward.

This first part of the ride is like the process of deciding it is time to loose some weight and your preparation. You decide, you do some research on how to eat or what diet plan to use. Then you look at what exercise plan to follow, how often, when you will fit it in to your already pack schedule. There is much angst, nervousness, and maybe even some excitement in all this.

Now we are cresting the first hill. Whew! That feels good! Maybe we are a week in, a month, who knows...but we start to slip down the other side. Eventually we barrel down into the valley. Our first hiccup. Maybe it's a party, lunch with the girls, a bad day at work...whatever it is it leads to a break with the plan. We overeat, skip a workout, or just have a candy bar. But it's okay, we recover. We get back into the swing of things and start climbing the next hill. This is important!

Again. Something happens we hit another valley, more ups and downs. Maybe a plateau. (Ack!) A loop, a twist. This is the weight loss journey. It is not an easy path straight down. Everyone's path is different, just like roller coasters are all different. One person's journey might be like riding the Great American Scream Machine, a wooden coaster with no loops. Or, their journey might be more like mine...The Incredible Hulk. At least, that's how it feels.

So I want to know, how did you feel about the article if you read it, and what roller coaster is your journey to weight loss?


Shiloh Walker on October 28, 2010 at 5:20 AM said...

I read it. My feelings? It was insulting as hell, and yeah, the apology sucked eggs. Some people, including her and her editor, later try to use things like how obesity is such a health issue, her previous problems with anorexia...

eh, not impressed. For one, her article wasn't about health. She wasn't saying things like... "I look at those people and worry about their health." She said, "They gross me out."

One thought that came through my mind was... "Are you twelve? Are you in middle school?"

Another thought- if she is a recovering anorexic, I suspect she's letting her own body images issues affect her thinking.

Another thought-and I'm going to drop all pretenses at my normal diplomacy here. Maura Kelly needs to shut the hell up about certain things-namely telling obese people how much 'control' they have.

She's never fought this fight. She's never dealt with it. And unless I'm mistaken, she's also not involved in either the medical field or the nutritional field-which means she doesn't have THAT viewpoint, either.

A lifelong obsession, as she called it, with being thin isn't justification for anything.

Since she has no background, no experience, basically she's talking out of her ass.

And while she's entitled to her opinion, she needs to prepared to handle the fall out. And whoa... was there fallout.

I wish it hadn't gotten as ugly, though. People never should have stooped as low as they did-they went far lower than she did.

Naturally her editor is going to stand behind her, and I'm not surprised especially after how nasty some of the comments got-not matter how ugly her post was-you don't use one person's ugliness to justify it back-they turned around and posted crap about where she lived, how she didn't deserve to live and I can't help but think this... if the commenters had remained at least a little bit cordial and not stooped to her level, and lower, I think perhaps MC would have taken a different approached.

Perhaps a more forthright apology would have been issued by the magazine itself. Perhaps the editor in chief would have reconsidered things, but a member of her staff was being attacked-and while she wasn't an innocent victim, AT ALL, typical behavior is to stand by her people.

My journey? I'm still fighting that last fricking 20 pounds. It was 25.

That's my goal for next year, I swear. Part of the problem is the evil pill the doctor had me on after surgery-once he switched it, I ended up dropping five pounds within like three weeks.

Sigh. Now if I can just get the 20 off...

Mama Kitty on October 28, 2010 at 5:41 AM said...

I need to finish getting ready for work, so I don't have a lot of time to comment right now, but I can honestly say that I'm saddened and sickened by the comments by Ms. Kelly. I haven't read the full article, but I have a feeling that I won't. I may not be 242 pounds anymore, but I still have weight that I need to drop and I still battle with my body image - and I don't need to read someone's childish opinion that watching fat people kiss makes her sick to her stomach. I can't believe Marie Claire would allow such bigotry and just plain rudeness to be printed. I don't think I'll ever pick up another issue of MC again.

My rollercoaster would probably be the Texas Cyclone from the former Six Flags Over Houston. No loops (because I'm still kind of scared of those), but plenty of ups & downs.

Riley Quinn on October 28, 2010 at 8:20 AM said...

I read the article. My first reaction was WTF? Did she really say that? Then I was angry. Then sad.

Judging overweight people seems to be the last acceptable form of discrimination. People look at heavier people and see someone who is lazy and with no will power.

Maura Kelly likened overweight people to drunks or drug abusers. In some ways we are. Food is our drug of choice. The difference is that when an alcoholic or drug user decides to go clean, they can stop. We need food everyday to stay alive and be healthy.

It's not as easy as having control. Many of us became this way for various reasons, much in the way that Ms. Kelly became anorexic. I'm sure she would be offended if someone told her that they were grossed out by looking at her. As one commenter said, telling someone who's overweight to just move more is like telling an anorexic to just eat more. There's more at play than just food and/or exercise.

As Shiloh said, I'm sad that the commenters went as far as they did. Some were way out of line. It's just a sad situation all around when someone is judged for how they look than the person they are inside.

I'm overweight. I just started my weight loss journey in August and I'm down 16#. Better than that, I'm a lot more fit already. My exercise instructor, who is completely awesome by the way, made the comment that she can really tell a difference in my performance in class.

I'm going to keep working at it. Not because Maura Kelly shamed me into it but because I'm doing it for me, just as I was when I started 2 months ago.

I hope that Ms. Kelly finds some happiness in her life so that she doesn't have to tear others down to make herself feel good. I hope that Marie Claire understands the ugly message they've sent by allowing the whole thing in the first place. Most of all, I hope those struggling with their weight ignore the bullying message here and love themselves anyway, just because they're worth it.

Dara Young on October 29, 2010 at 10:23 AM said...

Shiloh I know you'll make those last 20 pounds. You are too determined! You are such an inspiration to all of us!

MamaKitty,it was pretty awful to read. I don't recommend it. So your the Texas Cyclone...I feel ya.

Riley, thanks for commenting. I agree. A big part of successful weight loss is learning to love yourself enough to say no. to say yes to the right choices and a healthy lifestyle. Mean and hurtful articles like that one do not help people who are already suffering and full of self doubt. It takes so much courage to get up and get on the damn ride.


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