What I Should Have Said to Your Weight Loss Advice

Do you see me as a ‘before’? Because I don’t.

Your Fat Friend
Human Parts
Published in
9 min readJan 30, 2018

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Photo: Oleg Elkov/Getty Images

I had just walked in the door when you sidled up next to me.

“Can I show you something?”

You showed me your iPad, face lit up with eager excitement. You watched me closely, looking for a happy or grateful reaction — something to reinforce your discovery. Instead, you watched my face fall.

On the screen were before and after pictures from surgeon’s offices, advertisements for gastric bypass and lap band surgeries. On the left stood a woman my size, slouching and exposed, in fitted workout clothing. Next to her, that same woman, beaming and standing tall, reduced to half her previous size.

I looked at the woman my size, her stony expression betrayed by the deep disappointment behind her eyes. I looked at the shape of her body: the soft slopes of her breasts, belly, hips. Her body looked so much like mine. I am before. I am always before.

“I saw these pictures and I thought of you,” you explained. When I didn’t respond, you went on. “Think of how much healthier you would be. The partners you could date. I know you love clothes — you could wear whatever you want!” You paint my body with stencils, my life made up of negative space. You aren’t describing me —…

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Your Fat Friend
Human Parts

Your Fat Friend writes about the social realities of living as a very fat person. www.yourfatfriend.com