How to love a fat person.
Your Fat Friend

I appreciate your sharing this experience.

So much of life is getting the right perspective, and the hardest of all is to get the right perspective on ourselves. We tend to think either that we are the best of all possible people and therefore do not need to change (others need to be more like us), OR we think we are the worst of all possible people and it is hopeless to change. Either way, we don’t have to put in any work. And it is easy to fall into a default mode of self-consciousness which leads us to behave in ways that are self-defeating, unattractive, etc.

Add to this peer influence and the dynamic whereby the aggressions of the group may become focused on one individual’s perceived fault(s) to distract from those of the other individuals making up that group. Two individuals may come into conflict and the stronger emerge as the Alpha whom the others follow. The Alpha’s power is exercised in directing the group’s collective approval/disapproval. Fat is still regarded as an unattractive condition, even in (especially in) media, and so is the condition most bullied in our schools.

May I ask as to your own attractions, as to whether you regard persons physically attractive in the commonly accepted sense preferable to the obese (like myself)? Many of our troubles are caused by our own conflicted feelings of envy and resentment on the one hand and desire on the other (This is what makes men’s relating to women so problematical- the old trope is “Women- can’t live with them, can’t live without them.”)

Groucho Marx tellingly said, “I wouldn’t want to be member of a club that would allow me as a member.” That gets a chuckle, not merely from the irony, but also because many of us recognize the pattern in ourselves, involving judgment on a condition we share, and trying to deny that condition, thus either living a lie, or living under self-condemnation. In this, as in so many other situations, the truth shall set you free, free in the sense that you can make unconscious motives and dynamics visible and make decisions about them. Make the best bargain you can with life, then move on. The individual with confidence, sensitive and responsive to the signals of others, is generally the most attractive and engaging person in the room.

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