By Pooja Luthra:
A few years ago, when I was in school, my boyfriend broke up with me, after which my whole class started bullying me. Despite constant complaints, the school authorities couldn’t do anything about it. Having to deal with this ordeal eventually pushed me into depression. I was so depressed that I just wanted to die.
In depression, either one loses a lot of weight or gains too much due to stress eating. At first, I lost a lot of weight and my weight went as low as 38 kg (I’m 5ft 4, so that is very less). One morning my mom came to my room and I had fainted in bed. I was rushed to the hospital, where they told me I had dehydration and shortage of body salts. The doctor told me that I had become too weak. This worried me and I started to stress eat. I used to have a lot of bad days at school because of the bullying so whenever I would come home I would eat as much as I could to forget it all, mostly fried and sweet foods. After a while, I started to gain weight at a very rapid speed.
I changed my school shortly after that, but adjusting in the new school was also a very troubling task. That led to more stress eating and weight gain. I wasn’t aware of antidepressant medication earlier, so I wasn’t able to treat my depression at the right time. I take the medication for it now, and I feel better. While I don’t stress eat anymore, I also can’t lose weight because of the medication.
I have never judged anyone on their body shape and size. When people used to complain about their weight, I used to tell them that you are not fat, just healthy and that’s not bad. But I couldn’t understand their emotions about why they feel so sad about it. Now I do…
First of all, people don’t stop asking what happened to you. And answering that question isn’t ever easy. Also, why should have something ‘happened’ for me to gain weight?
What I wear becomes another issue. I have often heard my friends pass comments on women who resemble my body type, saying that ‘she looks like a prostitute’. It makes me wonder if they say the same about me behind my back. Finding clothes isn’t easy either. Most stores don’t offer larger sizes, and even if they do, the sales reps always giggle and make me feel uncomfortable.
Apart from that, because my weight gain was rapid, I have a lot of stretchmarks on my arms. When people see them, they act like it is something to be repulsed by. I don’t get it, it is a normal thing, and a part of me.
Ridiculing my weight isn’t just it, people are full of assumptions and stereotypes about those who are on the heavier side. They just assume that size is proportional to strength, so I must be really strong. They couldn’t be more wrong. Strength has nothing to do with size, I cannot lift much weight, and am actually very weak.
I might be overweight, but I am happy with the way I am, it is the society that makes us feel bad about ourselves. It makes us feel jealous of others, makes us want to be someone we are not.
But listen to me, if you are overweight, that doesn’t change anything, your beauty is yours. Don’t listen to anyone trying to convince you otherwise. So the next time you look into the mirror, see the beautiful human being that you are.
We face constant pressure from society to look a certain way in order to be seen as ‘attractive’. Read how another writer dealt with the ‘Kali-Kalooti‘ complex.