I could use some supportive, loving words from the community. If you can find the time, please read my blog post and send me your thoughts and comments, your related stories, anything to help me feel the sense of community and support. I crave these feelings right now.
I could never understand when folks would tell me that they don't speak to a sibling. My brother and sister and I went through a very dysfunctional, emotionally challenging environment growing up together. We all dealt with this is different ways. We were always like soldiers in the same troop, we went through the war together. We had a love and a connection with each other that was the envy of many of my friends. I could never imagine, being in a set of circumstances where I would be able to say to someone, "I don't speak to my sister."
My sister and I had an argument about a very personal issue. During the argument, she brought up my eating, which was unrelated to the argument. As far as the argument about the very personal issue, I came to a recognition that no good can come from discussing it, so I put up a boundary of no discussion about it and then I addressed her comments about my eating, and my "killing myself".
In an email, I asked her…. "Are you even the least bit curious about the Fat Acceptance Movement and the Health at any size movement? Have you looked into it at all? You haven't asked me about it. Why haven't you asked me about it?" I don't run away from everyone when they discuss my weight, just the hysterical folks, like you, who can't have a calm, respectful conversation about it. I demand to be treated with respect, even if I or my decisions are not respected. I have the right to live my life any way I want. I have found a way that makes me happy. I will not discuss it with you unless you stay calm. don't raise your voice, and express your thoughts with the understanding that I get to choose to do anything I want.
I'd be happy to talk to you if you can stay calm, not raise your voice and try to understand what I am thinking, even if you disagree with it. Do not try to get me to think your right. I am clear that you think my decisions are wrong for me. If you want to talk about it, then, we will.. if you don't raise your voice or yell. You have to acknowledge my right to make my own decisions.
She wrote me….
I'll admit I am not particularly curious about the Fat Acceptance Movement or the Health at any size movement. I haven't looked into either of them. I haven't asked you about them because I honestly think they are toxic for you. I don't say that to be cruel, I only say it because you asked. I know that it is not fair to form an opinion about something I don't know much about. It isn't even in my character to do that. But I do know what you've told me about them and what you've sent to read. I agree with their stand on acceptance and tolerance. I also firmly believe that you do not have to be "skinny" to be healthy. However, I honestly feel (and am only saying this because you asked) that you have taken it to the next level by using these "movements" as an excuse to continue unhealthy habits like over eating and avoiding exercise. I know you may feel my choice of words by saying "killing yourself" might have been harsh, but it is truly how I see it. When you bring up the scientific research argument, it makes sense to you, but you don't consider the research on both sides. If you are going to feed into a belief and truly take it on as a tool to leading a lifestyle, you need to consider its opposition as well. When you consider your vote for president, do you only research one candidate? An analogy Dxxxx gave to me was, "Some people live long healthy lives into old age and are smokers, but does that make smoking any less risky?" I feel like that analogy could be applied here and to really any risky decisions we make in our lives.
Are you fellow Fat-o-sphere folks seeing the hypocrisy in her argument here…
I wrote her this…
"As far as the fat acceptance movement goes I need to point out to you the hypocrisy of your argument. You tell me that I am not considering all sides of the health issues (which I am) in the same paragraph that you say you are not interested is learning about this because you have already judged it without investigation.
In fact, after I tell you I have found something that I am happy about, you write in an email that you are not interested in learning about it.
Would you want to have a relationship with someone that did those things to you?
I am truly shocked at your hypocrisy here. I am saddened and hurt by your judgement.
Unless you can see, and amend your hypocrisy and judgement here, and you can express to me a commitment to have an open mind in order to get an understanding of Fat Acceptance, I guess that leaves us with cordial exchanges at family functions because under the current circumstances I have no interest in what you think or feel anymore.
I hope you decide to make a commitment to learn about FA and communicate it to me, because, for all intensive purposes, we are done if you don't.
My Love for you doesn't stop because my willingness to associate with you does.
Well folks, I am sitting here and I am surprisingly not extremely sad, although I am sad about this, not angry although I think connecting with some anger might help me, I am actually feeling proud. I am proud to be so clear on what is not acceptable behavior to me. I am proud that I am so clear on my convictions about Fat Acceptance, that I am willing to let go of something that I thought I would never let go of, my relationship with my beautiful, sister. I am happy that she has a husband that loves her so very dearly because I actually feel sad for her and want her to be supported as she clearly sees that I am willing to walk away over this.
I know nothing is forever. Maybe i will soften about my boundaries with her, even if she doesn't compromise on learning about FA, maybe not.
I have spent my life second guessing myself, always buying into other's judgement of me and turning it inward as self hatred and shame. All the years in therapy couldn't help me see what the Fat Acceptance Community has shown me in a few months.
I can stand up to family members who judge what I do, listen to them, disagree with them, and be certain about where I stand.