Words That Hurt and Devastate

You may or may not remember that I featured Myndi Shafer on my blog back in February of 2013 when she released her book, The Darkening. Well, today, she’s on my mind again because of a blog she posted yesterday. If you’ve ever struggled with your weight, and the hurtful things people say to you, I encourage you to click on this blue link and read [True] I Get Asked About My Pregnancy, Even When I’m Not Preggo.

Pregnant bellyPhoto credit: Morguefile.com

Unlike so many others, this person wasn’t trying to be mean about Myndi’s weight, but the words were hurtful nonetheless.

For any of us struggling with weight issues, a question like that – whether intended to be hurtful or not – can ruin our day. And haunt us every time we take a bite of food, pull on our non-single-digit-size clothes, or look in a mirror.

We find ourselves comparing ourselves with anyone with a better figure than we have, and we come up wanting. Wanting to be like them. Wanting to fix whatever is wrong with us so we look like them. Wanting to wake up and find that this was all a bad dream.

But for whatever reason, our reality is what it is. Do I struggle with weight? You bet. Blood test results from twelve years ago show I had hypothyroidism. Who knows how long that’s been going on? Or why the doctor I had at the time chose to ignore those numbers? Add to that what was likely an issue for gluten for most of my life, and then the car accident that almost put me in a wheelchair … yeah, I struggle.

Everyone else with weight issues struggles too. Maybe your reasons are different than mine, but they’re still valid.

Judgmental people don’t have a clue as to why we don’t fit their idea of acceptable. They don’t care either. No excuse or reason will be good enough for them because in their opinion, we’re flawed. We’re not part of the beautiful crowd that meets with their approval.

The question is….

Why do we need their approval?

Why do we allow the hurtful words of rude people to damage our self-esteem? They don’t know about or understand our struggles. They don’t know what we deal with physically or emotionally. They don’t care.

So why do we care about them and their words and opinions?

We may have weight issues, but that’s not who we are. Yes, it would be better if we could reach our ideal weight, but even if we never do, we are not our size. Our size is a part of who we are, but the important parts of us – that’s our hearts and our minds. 

Our bodies are just the packaging. The gift wrap. And even though I know being able to drop a few pounds would make me healthier, anyone who judges me based on my packaging isn’t someone who matters. Because those that matter don’t care about the outside. They care about what’s inside. They care about who we really are.

That’s why, after the first of the year, I’m starting a new series. I’ve been planning it for a few months now, and am very excited about the project. It’s going to be about real people. Not the beautiful, rich, perfect people we read about in most books that have been written (some of them by me). Yeah, there are plenty of those out there, but I want to write about people like us. Your average, everyday people who struggle with issues like weight, whether it’s too much or not enough, not being tall enough, being too short, having a big nose, or a small nose, or a bald spot, or whatever it is that makes us normal.

Because I think it’s time we normal, average people with real-life struggles have some representation too. That we see that while we may have some flaws, flaws are normal. We’re not lacking. We’re not defective. And we’re not supposed to live up to the standards set by judgmental, obnoxious people.

This song does have some cursing in it (not a lot), but the first time I heard it, I loved it. This is the attitude we all need to have…





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6 Responses to Words That Hurt and Devastate

  1. Lynner says:

    To quote my dear mom who refused to “struggle” with her weight, she simply enjoyed life being who she was “I’m not overweight, I just need to be 7′ tall, but life’s way too short to spend my days trying to get taller!” 😉

    • Kristy K. James says:

      I like your mom’s attitude! While I would like to be a little thinner, I don’t sweat it. There’s no point because life is too short. And trying to get taller…. Yeah. I’ve thought about it, but I don’t want to work that hard. 😀

  2. Karen Goodson says:

    Good story. I have a friend that struggles with weight and I wish she would realize what a beautiful person she is inside and out.

    • Kristy K. James says:

      You’re a good friend to her, Karen. Unfortunately, a sad part of society doesn’t believe the same thing and she’s likely taken to heart the things cruel people have said to her. But with people like you in her life, she may come to believe that she’s beautiful, regardless of her size. 🙂

  3. <3 <3 <3 Love this post, and thanks so much for the shout-out!

    • Kristy K. James says:

      Is that you, Myndi? You’re welcome. Your post really hit home, then I heard All About That Bass on the way home from town and decided I needed to write something. I hate when people are made to feel bad about their size (or anything else) when people are thoughtless with their words.

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