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Would You Be Hurt if Someone Called You Fat?

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(Photo by incurable hippie for Flickr.)

A viewer recently wrote a letter to a Wisconsin news anchor telling her he thinks her physical condition needs improvement and reminding her that obesity is one of the worst choices a person can make. He went on to say that “surely you don’t consider yourself a suitable example for this community’s young people, girls in particular.”  How did she respond?

In case you haven’t yet seen the story/video, you can click here to check it out.

News 8′s anchor Jennifer Livingston, the victim in this story, had this to say:

     The truth is: you could call me fat. And yes, even obese, on a doctor’s chart. But to the person who wrote me that letter – do you  think I don’t know that/ that your cruel words are pointing out something that I dont see?You know nothing about me but what you see on the outside. And I am much more than a number on a scale.

Jen went on to say:

      October is national anti-bullying month, and this is a problem that is growing every day in our schools and on the internet. It is a major issue in the lives of young people today. And as the mother of three young girls, it scares me to death. The internet has become a weapon. Our schools have become a battleground. And this behavior is learned. It is passed down from people like the man who wrote me that email. If you are at home, and you are talking about the fat newslady, your children are probably going to go to school and call someone fat. We need to teach our kids how to be kind, not critical. And we need to do that by example.

Have you ever been called names that left you feeling ashamed? Have you developed a thick skin so that you are not easily offended?

I worry, as a mother, about any hurtful comments that our kids have to hear about themselves. Their self-esteem is fragile in school and they need to grow in confidence, not get knocked down emotionally by other kids that may or not be ‘kidding’ about what they say…or post…or email…or text.

And for any mom who struggles with her weight (and there are many), please remember that you are beautiful…no matter what your size. Life isn’t easy, and obesity isn’t necessarily your ‘choice’. But live for today knowing that you are doing the best that you can in this moment…and that you are indeed more than a number on a scale.

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