sizeism? weightism?

oh, peter.

oh, peter.

i got a phone call from megan this morning after i’d entered my morning weight in myfitnesspal.

“you lost 67 pounds???! that’s a tiny asian person!”

too true. then she posited the question, which had come up before, if i noticed anything different in how people treated me. i really don’t. maybe i was oblivious to it, but i’ve had more than one person tell me that i didn’t seem “fat”, so -to-speak, when i weighed my highest – just bigger.

but, the one thing that does give me pause is my two job searches. after getting laid off from poopwest supply in ’06 and all through my graduate assistantship, i was looking for jobs. my resume was stellar – i got 20+ interviews out of it – but the only permanent job was at merrill as a prepress tech, a sort of fall-back position that i took to keep my fingers in the adobe programs (and for money to keep me off the streets!).

i had interviews at banks, casinos, universities, departments of tourism – really awesome places, now that i think about it. but no one wanted me, which i attributed at the time to my reservedness, shyness, and sub-par creative abilities (i was actually told i should probably not apply to true creative designer positions after seeking feedback from an interviewer).

enter job search #2, after merrill decided to shove my hours back to 3-11. at this point, i’d lost almost 50 pounds and was wearing a size 16/18 as opposed to a size 20/22. i sent out a few resumes – not a lot – and got one phone interview for a release writing position at mayo (which i’m not surprised i didn’t get because my experience doesn’t contain a ton of writing) and one phone interview at RCTC. surprise! job landed after one face-to-face interview.

is it just coincidence? i know people can be judgey toward overweight people. heck, even i am now (more in a “HEY i can do it; you can TOO” kind of way). i’m sure it’s more of a subconscious thing, sort of like racism and genderism (?), where your stereotypes and expectations flood your good reasoning.

another thing i’ve considered, even though i don’t personally think it made a difference, but i could be clouding my own perception, is perhaps my self-esteem rose because of the weight loss and resulted in my being a little less reserved in my interview. it’s hard to know.

what do you think? is weightism/sizeism a legit thing like racism or genderism?

i want to say i’ve written about this before, but i can’t remember. so if i did, you can ignore this post!

3 thoughts on “sizeism? weightism?

  1. me

    well, to me you were bigger and curvy. Not fat. I never thought of you as fat and was actually floored when I saw your actual high weight. You look good at any size (except extremes!) and are a wonderful person no matter how big or small you are!

  2. i think sizeism is a definite thing like racism and sexism. i just attended a breakout session on sizeism, and the presenter said discrimination based on size is a socially acceptable discrimination (600 pound people are fair game to judge and no one is going to judge you for judging them). i think it’s true that judging a person’s weight is socially acceptable. it’s not right, but it’s what’s happening.

    and i know i fully benefit from every point of thin privilege. on the flip side of that though, whereas people may refrain from commenting on the bigness of a person, people are forever commenting on the smallness of me… because i’m apparently the gold standard of what people think we should all look like, they figure the comments are okay. i don’t really care one way or the other because i’m comfortable and happy with my size. maybe people would care less about comments on their size if they were truly happy with their size? but that doesn’t negate the hurt feelings rude comments and blatant discrimination creates. and i can’t really comment on this train of thought because i’ve always been thin, and i’ve never experienced discrimination or negativity based on my body size. this is a big discussion for a blog. πŸ™‚

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