In front of my building is a crosswalk. There is no light and no stop sign, but it is a clearly painted crosswalk. As soon as winter ends, the city puts a large sign in the middle telling drivers that they must YIELD to pedestrians in the crosswalk. That is in accordance with New York State Law.
Often times people go whizzing right through there and intentionally ignore the sign and anyone who happens to be crossing. When I was fat, I could stand on the edge of that crosswalk for minutes at a time and people would keep going without letting me cross. Often times they would be staring straight ahead pretending that they didn't see me there waiting to cross - EVEN IF I WAS HALFWAY THROUGH and standing in the middle of the road. It would not be unusual for me to finally just walk out into traffic, basically FORCING the drivers to either run my ass over or stop.
I'm really noticing this summer that times have changed. I use this crosswalk more because I've started parking in a different place, so it is really noticable. Basically now, it is not uncommon for a driver to come to a complete stop and waive me on before I've even gotten to the edge of the road. Not surprisingly, I guess, this happens more with male drivers.
I've been asked if I am treated differently now that I am thin. You betcha. People are nicer, men run to open doors for me, I get smiles and nods when I am out walking, people start random conversations with me, store personnel are more then happy to assist me and I get looked in the eye much more often.
This is sad. Why I am worthy now of respect just because I am thin? I am not a better person then I was when I was fat. Why does society feel that fat people are less deserving of courtesy and respect then someone who is thin? Does this happen to men, too, or just women I wonder?
Some of the attention I get. I mean, for most people, thin is more attractive then heavy. So when I am out running and a crew of counstruction workers comes to a stop and just watches me run by, I get that. But letting someone across a road??!! I sometimes want to stop and say to the random guy who just opened the door for me "Would you have done that for me when I weighed 300 pounds?!?!" But I already know the answer having had doors let go right in my face not so long ago.
I recently read on a weight loss site a woman's post where she was walking out of a store to her car and a car with 2 grown men drove by slowly and yelled "Moo!!!!" What the fuck is wrong with people?
I guess we can't stop the rest of the world from being assholes. But I sometimes catch even myself thinking not so nice things when I see an extremely obese person. And I, of all people, should be sensitive to that! It's horrible. But it seems like obesity is the last prejudice people are openly displaying without shame.
You will not embarass or humiliate someone into losing weight. I hope that someday people's attitudes will change! Withthe obesity epidemic in this country, we need to work on positive, motivating solutions, not tearing people down...