…of what’s just happened. It contorts responsibility, laying blame for others’ behavior at our feet. I‘m sorry you don’t have better self-esteem is not the same as you shouldn’t be treated terribly. It’s a vicious kind of gaslighting that blames the prey for its predator’s violence.
In that way, air travel is sadly familiar, a microcosm of what happens so often as a fat person. I am watched — and judged harshly — as I try — and fail — to fit into a space that was made for someone else. I am always too big, always too much, always unacceptable. I must make myself smaller and smaller, reducing and reducing endlessly, my stubborn body resisting at every turn. Still, I am never quite small enough to make anyone else comfortable.