The question was, "Is it ok to tell someone they are fat?" I really like this answer and in total agreement. I hope this person helps me help the world to end shame. Here is the comment about what Martha Stewart said to someone about being overweight.
Posted by CBT Fri Feb 5, 2010 2:54pm PST
The doc's right on target. While it definitely carries some health risks, it will do no good for people to shame themselves, or for others to try to shame them about being overweight (technically you can't make someone else feel shame, but many would do that to themselves if confronted by others. For many, especially those who are overweight, eating can serve more of a purpose than just nutrition. It can be a way they deal with emotion they generate in a higher frequency, intensity or duration than they know how to deal with any other way. Shame is just one emotion they might seek relief from by eating. It's analogous to alcoholism. Shame is often an integral emotion those who become addicted to alcohol are trying to seek relief from, and if they generate shame about having messed up their life and others by drinking, it unfortunately just gives more purpose for them to drink more. Shame comes believing you don't live up to your own or others expectations. It'd be easy for someone who gains weight, whatever the reason might be, to generate shame because of that. One of the most important things someone can do to free themselves to lose weight is to have USA or unconditional self-acceptance to counter the shame. Because shame blocks change. The second thing would be to develop better emotional management to reduce the purpose served by eating too much. I invite you to check out the articles I've posted about USA, and developing an internal locus of control and recognizing and correcting the cause of generating more emotion than is necessary or helpful, what you think. Or to visit www.itsjustanevent.com
For what it's worth, I was the fat kid in class when there used to only be one in a class. Been there, done that. My wife was overweight when we met. Shame was her problem, like what I noted above. Would diet, but still beat up on herself for not losing enough, then start eating because of it, gain weight back, and eat even more, and so on. Taught her how to deal with that and now her weight has been under control for over twenty years.
The point is that you have to be able to get into the right cognitive and emotional place to be able to act on helpful advice and information that's out there, be it about obesity and losing weight, or anything else. Most folks struggle to get there. Learn how to and everything gets easier. It just becomes taking care of business.