Posted: Wednesday, December 19, 2012 2:25:15 PM
Be the change: From Obesity to Self Destruction; it has to change.
I hear the term “Body Image”; obesity is the first thing that pops into my mind. Then I think self destruction.
In 2009 there was a girl in my school in foster care who struggled with obesity. She weighed in at 311 lbs.
She was ridiculed on a daily basis. Her classmates made hurtful comments and played mean jokes on her. One time they taped a sign to her back that said, “Feed me. I’m hungry.” In her gym class the “skinny” girls would make cruel comments, like asking her if they could borrow her fat for the winter, promising to return it at the first sign of spring, though she didn’t need it.
This girl began to be traumatized. She was constantly put on a pedestal of public humiliation. Lunch breaks were spent throwing up and crying. She would eat her lunch and then throw it up. Her lunch break buddy became the toilet. She was hurt and alone. The girl never spoke up about the bullying. She was passive. She hid her hurt and pain. She didn’t dare let anyone suspect she was sad and that she was hurting. This bullying, or rather emotional abuse went on for quite some time. She kept quiet until one day it went too far. Way too far.
One day at lunch, she was sitting in her usual spot in the lunch room, alone like always. She had just sat down and was in the process of opening her milk when the basketball team walked in. It wasn’t unusual that they all had bags of cookies in their hands, due to the fact that the school was trying to raise money for the Snowball Dance. The players, one by one, starting with the captain, began to set the cookies in front of her. They began to make comments like, ‘Here fatty”, “Eat up”, and “You know you want them”. Tears began to slide down her flushed face and the players laughed. She threw the cookies at the captain’s face and ran to the bathroom where she remained for the rest of the day. She once again forced herself to throw up, but all she had in her system was milk. When the girl got home she ran straight to her room. This girl cut, and cut, and cut. She was so shaken by this nasty bullying that she didn’t know what else to do. She was broken and hurt. She is me.
What can I do to change how girls view their body images? I have a strong belief that people in the community need to change how they view body images. I believe that if people didn’t tease and taunt about body images that a lot of girls wouldn’t be so focused on whether they’re “skinny” enough for the standards that people in society have set. I want to make that clear to the community. How I plan to do that is to share the story I just shared. My story.