Obese and overweight people have revealed the things that people may not necessarily know affects them on an almost daily basis.
To educate people about their plight, people have taken to Reddit to speak candidly about what it’s really like to carry extra weight.
From the effects it can have on mental health, to problems finding clothes that fit, here’s what they said.
“How painful it is to have a physical representation of your addiction/weakness that everyone can see. Other vices or addictions like gambling, drug use, alcoholism, shopping addiction, etc. can be hidden to a certain extent. Being fat is a 24/7 billboard for my emotional eating.”
2. “Having to gauge the strength of furniture before sitting down.”
3. “Everything takes a lot more effort - walking up stairs, getting out of the car or a low chair/sofa, doing household chores, walking the dog, etc.”
4. “Honestly, it’s the constant disappointment of friends and family. Every day I come home from college...[and] it’s a barrage of: ‘Did you eat healthy?’, ‘What did you have for lunch?’, ‘What’s your weight?’. Just stuff like that. People define you as being overweight like it’s the only important fact about you.”
5. “Seeing that immediate first impression of ‘yuck!’ flit across someone’s face when they first see you. When I was obese I hated going out because this would happen all the time, especially walking into a shop and the receptionist looking at you in disgust before they remember to smile.”
6. “Being made fun of by people for being overweight, which doesn’t help with the psychological aspect of depression eating.”
7. “Finding clothes that fit on all parts of the body. When I was obese, most of my fat went to my belly and butt. Buying pants was a nightmare. Anything that fit my waist and hips would look absolutely ridiculous on my legs. Shirts never ever looked right.”
8. “Thighs/buttocks chafing when you walk, worse when you run. I would sometimes walk for a couple of hours and then the welts on my arse would be so bad I had to lie down for a day.”
9. “I became invisible after I gained weight. I used to think that the majority of people are kind and friendly, but it turns out that they only smile or hold doors open for skinny girls. It changed my whole outlook on humanity.”
10. “Some medical professionals won’t look past the fat, or feel that since you don’t care about your health, why should they put more than the bare minimum of effort into dealing with you. This causes problems with misdiagnosis, lack of proper preventative care and can be really dangerous if you have a serious medical issue.”
11. “That people think it’s easy to lose weight and you just don’t try. ‘Just eat less,’ they’ll tell you. But the thing is, when you eat a lot of junk and then try to stop, your brain still wants those things, and it wants them BAD. So you cave but instead of getting right back on the horse to start over, you feel like a failure and give up.”
12. “Seating on public transportation/airplanes/any seating that doesn’t have solid dividers. We know you don’t want to sit beside the fat person, but trust me, we’re trying to take up as little space as possible. To the point of doing some pretty impressive contortion and/or making ourselves damn uncomfortable in the process.”
13. “Having a disability. While I do think a lot of people are more understanding of my weight because I’m not able to just go for a walk or jog or do push ups, there are also a lot of people that assume obesity is why I’m in a wheelchair. That pisses me off to no end. I do have some exercises I can do, and I could totally stop eating so much (carbs and soda are my fucking addiction). However I also realise a lot of it is from depression and anxiety and emotional eating. Why would I want to try to lose weight if I have the world lowest self-esteem? So many people refuse to realise that that is the real reason so many struggle with obesity and how important it is to seek treatment for.”
14. “Not being able to wipe my bottom properly is the single worst part of my obesity.”
15. “I carry most of my weight in my thighs, hips, and lower abdomen instead of my upper tummy where a lot of people have weight issues. My face and arms and lower legs aren’t overly large either, so I don’t necessarily SEEM obese unless you see me naked. And that’s the part that sucks. Feeling like you’re misleading people on dating sites unless they see full body pictures of you. I feel myself constantly wanting to say, ‘I’m actually really fat so please don’t freak out when you meet me’.”
16. “People hate you. They hate you. They can know nothing about you except that you’re fat and they can just absolutely hate you. This is maybe not unexpected but it’s certainly not thought about much but it is absolutely exhausting being fat. Sometimes I barely have the energy to get out of bed and do basic things.”
17. “At my heaviest, I was 300 lbs at 17 years old. As a very social girl, it was all the little things I couldn’t do as a teenage girl hanging with my friends. I couldn’t just borrow a guy’s hoodie or jacket because it most likely wouldn’t fit. I couldn’t just sit on a friend’s lap for fun. I couldn’t just run away from a guy holding a gross bug. I couldn’t just sit on a folding chair at outside picnics because it might bend or break. I couldn’t just randomly skip. I couldn’t get piggy back rides from guys. I couldn’t just go to amusement parks without doing diligent research on weight limits beforehand. I couldn’t go clothes shopping with my friends. I would just stick to the shoes and accessories section when we went out.”
18. “The biggest thing for me is that at a very large size, your weight, and the workarounds necessary to get through the day, are constantly on your mind. From the moment I wake, almost all decisions are impacted by the limitations I have created for myself. Cut through the middle of the lobby because I see two teens who could say something or snicker. Can I fit in that conference room chair? It’s 3:00pm, better get inside before the school bus drives by. The mental drain of dealing practically and logistically with obesity, as well as the insecurity of it all, is a burden.”