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In 2021, I rebranded my blog from autism/mental health to gaming content, content about being a content creator. I thought I was non-existent. I posted autism content everywhere and no one noticed me except Youtube. I was tired of being expected to keep up with every word or phrase that’s ableist. I mean people assuming I knew instead of informing me.
I won’t make autism content as religiously as I did before. I may make an autism vlog/blog once a month or so.
A nice topic for my return, is body shaming and how it’s harmful. I feel body shaming doesn’t do what you think. People would shame someone’s size then turn around and say they’re gonna have health issues. You can show concern without being an ass. How do you know whether or not they are going to the gym by merely looking at a photo? You don’t.
Another aunt suddenly died and I had to go out of town quickly because they planned everything in like 2 days.
Ya’ll this article is gonna take a while.
My uncle and aunt took us down south. They were gonna attend as well. my grandpa and I stayed with his mom. Since this was unplanned and they planned the funeral so soon, I had no time to save for a hotel and to rent a car. So i stayed with my grandpa so at least I had a ride if I needed it.
So my grandpa’s mom thought it was Ok to ask me “how much bigger am I gonna get” and expected an answer. I don’t owe anyone anything. So I said I have bloating issues. Certain conditions can cause you to bloat so badly that it looks like you put on some pounds even though you actually didn’t. The answer wasn’t enough. I SNAPPED and said ‘Why does it matter? I get it. I don’t need you to remind me. From August to February, I could not do anything due to an ankle injury. it hurt to stand, walk, etc. I’ve starved myself because of people talking about my appearance.” and stormed out.
I couldn’t look into the future to know that the foot place wouldn’t find anything wrong and wouldn’t have any answers for me.
I ranted into my camera then the aunt that brought us out there came out. I felt as though she felt my reaction was wrong. I wasn’t wrong. And she used my grandmother’s “not knowing” as an excuse for her uncalled-for comment. It doesn’t matter if you “didn’t know” that’s why you don’t say anything. No one owes you anything. I will tell you when I owe my grandmother an explanation. When she goes to medical school and becomes a doctor. A doctor is the only person you owe an explanation to. The doctor (non-fatphobic ones) wanna help you. They can’t without knowing the problem. if you said you’re eating fish and chicken, you exercise and you’re gaining weight, that can alert them. A doctor who wants to help you or some entitled person who wants to bring you down? I mean I felt it was entitled to ask me a hurtful question and then be surprised Pikachu for getting offended.
I’m not buying “she didn’t know” because why does someone no longer having a child’s boy shock you to the moon? Secondly, there are other things you can ask someone. But why is it rude comments about their appearance the only thing she knows?
I felt my aunt didn’t want to see it from another point of view. Imagine constantly reliving your insecurities because people think it’s cool to throw them in your face. My aunt says not everything is to offend me. BRO. Mocking someone’s appearance, and bringing up their appearance in a mean way IS offensive. Now the eating disorder brain doesn’t think the same way as a normal brain. When you’ve dealt with eating disorders, and being bullied for your size, that shapes how you think. Not everyone is fat because they eat a lot. Maybe they have a medical condition they don’t know about. Maybe they are on medication that causes extreme weight gain. Unlike me where my meds can be taken as needed, they can’t miss a beat of theirs.
Ask a normal person why they gained weight, they’d just say for instance, their gym shut down for a month due to someone testing positive for COVID and they had to deep clean everything and they recently opened back up. A person who’s had an ED will have a reaction as I did. It varies from person to person, to be honest. We will go into autopilot and think the person is doing it with malicious intent. When people bullied us, they did so with ill intent.
She had other things she could have asked me. For instance, how was my trip, or how is my mom doing? Nope. throwing my insecurities in my face is the only thing she could think of?
The next day, before I even decided what I wanted for breakfast, my aunt (the one that lives there) comes into the room and reads me the riot act. I tried to get her to understand why her mom’s comment about my weight was hurtful and uncalled for but was not interested and wasn’t willing to learn why that was wrong. I was the bad guy for a justified reason. Just because YOUR friends like comments about their appearance like that or don’t mind doesn’t mean EVERYONE that comes your way is like that.
I felt if she was willing to learn she’d say something like “i didn’t realize how touchy weight can be for some people. I will talk to momma and make sure she learns from this and won’t repeat this anymore” or anything like that. Nope. I was the bad guy.
Now a lot of folks like myself may not see how their tone is compared to the person you’re delivering the message to. My folks won’t understand because they didn’t have to raise an autistic kid like my mom had to.
Everyone doesn’t stay the same. these people are expecting someone who is ALMOST 30 to have the body of a 16-year-old. They are trying to compare from when I was there in 2015. I was 19 years old. NINETEEN. I was barely old enough to drink. Now I am 27. When I was there in 2019 when my first aunt died, I was 22/23. I shouldn’t have to owe an explanation because my grandmother thinks someone is supposed to keep their child body forever. Maybe some people can. Some of my friends from high school that didn’t bail on me for being autistic, don’t have their 16/17 y/o bodies anymore. Their bodies developed for an adult like it’s supposed to.
Not knowing is not an excuse or isn’t a card to use. Instead, learn that not everyone appreciates comments like that and you need to ask them what they wanna talk about not assume. “oh she didn’t know” just sounds unwilling to try to do better vs “she didn’t know. I will talk to her, and explain why it was wrong so she won’t do it anymore. “
She wanted to be like “im not going to talk to her mom like that”
Well, you’re not going to make hurtful comments about my appearance. I’m not your homies. if your homies are OK with that, it’s between you and them. I am not OK with it. I do NOT appreciate it. it’s uncalled for. I don’t care if it’s custom here, I don’t care if it’s tradition. You can learn. There is nothing stopping you from learning. If you want to get technical.
Also, my mom doesn’t body shame people. You can unlearn things. Now you know not everyone like uninvited comments about their appearance. Its a different story if its something that can fix on the spot ( eg shoes are untied). You can choose to keep doing your hurtful shit or learn other things you can bring up when someone is visiting you. Not all of us can keep our bodies from when we were 16. She’s acting like I cursed her mom out, dropping F-bombs. Which did not happen.
That shows how blind they are. not physically but just socially unaware. It shows they lack morals. People have eating disorders because of this shit. Do you see why I talk about mental health issues?
if she didn’t like what happened, fine by me. She could have done so without making me feel like the bad guy. She could have done so without gaslighting me. What her mom did was wrong, period. No if, ands, or buts about it. Sure her mom didn’t know, if she wasn’t busy cutting me off and gaslighting me, she could have learned WHY it was wrong. You’re not going to learn anything by refusing to listen to mentally ill people.
We live in a world if you’re not a Barbie or a Ken doll people think you owe them an explanation. My aunt should have simmered down and then spoken to me. I guess based on her reaction, she was told recently. It seemed like she was OK with body shaming under “she didn’t know.” Instead of acknowledging that and seeing that not knowing isn’t an excuse to not do better. Nothing is stopping her from explaining to her mom why the comment was wrong. That’s the thing. A lot of autistic people can be blunt and it’s seen as rude. I was being blunt, but my aunt saw it as rude. I didn’t insult her mom, call her mom names, or curse her mom out.
Learn something. there is nothing stopping you from unlearning something.
Therefore, my folks have to be willing to unlearn their hurtful customs. I am just assuming asking someone why they gained weight is OK to them because it’s “custom” to ask someone that when they visit you. Im implying my folks can learn they can’t assume everyone is OK with that and ask something else. As I said, you can ask how is their trip or how is their family doing. How’s school if they’re in school etc? There are lots of things you can ask someone so there is no excuse to choose to bring up their appearance out of the 100s of topics.
That’s why I’m not buying “she didn’t know” because there are other things you can ask someone that’s visiting you. As I said I couldn’t see the future to know the foot doctor couldn’t find anything wrong with my ankle, that the x-ray and MRI would come back normal and they wouldn’t have any answers for me beyond that. I couldn’t predict what their having me doing at physical therapy could have been done at the gym. I mean instead of waiting 2 weeks for a full ass workout, I could have gone to the gym tomorrow.
People go through enough shit. Just stop.