Thursday, April 15, 2010

Good Meaning People Create Much Harm

When I read articles like this Smart Set Article, I am reminded of my own journey to healthy eating, how even in these blogs, you can see that I struggle to resist trying to be that ideal female form and exercise not out of fear of becoming fat (cuz fat isn't something to fear), but out of a genuine need and love to move.

I am also reminded, in my years-long journey, of the mistakes I've made. I was so self-righteous sometimes. A few years ago, I talked obsessively with one friend who was a recovered anorexic about this new counting-caloriees spreadsheet I had made. The poor girl was getting so sucked in to my diet mania that she had stop meeting with me. I had no idea that my mania would end, like every diet ends, and in a month or two I'd no longer tout the amazing qualities of my calorie-counting plan. I was hurting her by trying to convince that my diet was so good.

I also remember talking about being fat in front of my good friend who is larger than I am. She turned to me and said, "if you think you're fat, then what am I?".....Uhhh, awesome? Ooops.

Another friend was complaining about her weight. I had made significant changes in my life, and I wanted her to make them, too. So I just said what you're not supposed to say. "If you want to lose weight, go to the gym and exercise. Eat better. Do something!" That was when our friendship fell apart. We haven't been the same since. And what good did my advice do? She'd already heard that advice from every weight-loss expert around. Wouldn't it have been great if I'd said, genuinely, "Why would you want to lose weight? You're incredibly beautiful, sexy, and sensual in the body you have now. Besides, you think a smaller body can possibly house all the incredible gifts you have to offer?"

But it's hard to communicate about fat. It's a taboo subject. I don't think it should be.

My friends are still on diets, Weight Watchers and South Beach. But unlike my self-righteous days, I was quiet, and tried to only talk about the parts of the diets that I agreed with--cooking good, wholesome food and sharing it with friends, and exercising.

I just hope that the diet doesn't damage their self-esteem because anytime I fell off the wagon during my diet days, I felt shitty about myself, like I had failed.

I never want my friends to feel that way, especially since they have such kickin' bodies.

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