UK Psychologists Can Kiss My Fat Ass

The British Psychological Society has released an 84-page report on Obesity in the UK: A Psychological Perspective.

http://www.bps.org.uk/sites/default/files/images/pat_rep95_obesity_web.pdf

They are so concerned about how folks in theUK are getting fatter and fatter and what can be done about it. 

 I must admit I did not read the entire thing – I did scan it.  But I’m not sure I have the stomach to read it all carefully.  And what I got out of my scan of this document is that the psychologists are looking at a way to get more of the weight-loss-industry big bucks.

 The first problem – the cover of their report with a totally offensive picture!  It’s a view looking down over a belly with the feet just visible.  Hahahaha – isn’t that hilarious?  Not.

 And then they just spout all the usual myths about fat people – that they are fat because they eat too much and exercise too little (although they admit a few fatties may not fall into this category); that fat equals unhealthy; and that fat people are a huge burden on the NHS (National Health System) because they are fat.  Then they go on to ask (hang onto your hats) how do you cure fat people.  Oh and based on today’s numbers there will obviously be this many more fat people in the future and they will all suffer from various medical problems. 

 The “psychological perspective” seems to be:  (i) identify the problem, (ii) motivate the fatty to change their behavior (to achieve weight loss), and (iii) be ready to step in when the fatty relapses!  RELAPSE?????  Give me a fucking break.  So when the diet doesn’t work or the fat person loses interest in exercise because the focus is solely on weight loss, they have relapsed?

 The report tells us that anyone with a BMIover 30 has significant physical and psychological challenges when it comes to exercising.  No.  The problem is that the fatty is treated so badly when said fatty dares to go out into the world to get some exercise.  The psychologists say the fatty has social physique anxiety – no, the fatty has a survival instinct.  The fatty is not causing the problem.  You’ve got the wrong people on the couch, folks.  You need to be talking to the sick sons-of-bitches that yell, curse and throw things at a fatty on a bike!

 There are a few glimmers of hope in the document – surprisingly in theWLS(weight loss surgery) section, bias in the healthcare professions is addressed and it is suggested that the therapist might consider doing some intervention and advocacy on behalf of the patient exposed to such fat hatred.

 The section on childhood “obesity” does talk about the effect of bullying and development of negative body image; and also advises that involving the school is probably not a good idea.  It even suggests that exercise and eating well for general health is a better approach.  Whoo-hoo.  But mostly it talks about how fat kids are abused and traumatized, and come from dysfunctional families.  Well, yeah.  Some of them.  And this happens to thin kids too – so how about we deal with the abuser and the problematic family and stop blaming the fatty for getting fat. 

 A LOT of the discourse is on “emotional eating”.  Yes, fat people do eat for emotional reasons sometimes – just like everybody else.  The fact is most fat people do not eat any more than other people on average.  I think it is more likely that fat people take more notice of instances of emotional eating because fat people are trained to focus on their eating and the role food plays in their life.

 Also it seems most of the people the report is talking about are people who are seeking treatment because they feel being fat is wrong and detrimental to their lives.  It is a group that is primed to blame themselves for being fat and to judge their own actions as “bad”.

 So the “psychological perspective” appears to be the same as every other perspective.  The fatty is to blame.  Yeah, that’s a big help.

 

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14 thoughts on “UK Psychologists Can Kiss My Fat Ass

  1. “You’ve got the wrong people on the couch, folks.” THIS. EXACTLY.

    “I think it is more likely that fat people take more notice of instances of emotional eating because fat people are trained to focus on their eating and the role food plays in their life.” Yup.

    I am so sick of the assumption, based solely on my size, that I am living some sort of aberrant lifestyle. Sure, occasioally I overeat, or eat for emotional reasons, or eat a piece of cake, or whatever. BUT SO DOES (mostly) EVERYONE ELSE.

    Stop picking on us fatties!

    • Studies have shown that for the most part fat people do not eat more than non-fat people. Why can’t they wrap their heads around that? We eat like most other people (and often exercise like most everyone), the results are different. It’s the diversity of nature! Get over it.

  2. “The report tells us that anyone with a BMIover 30 has significant physical and psychological challenges when it comes to exercising. ”

    Seriously!?!??! Way to paint millions of individuals with an overly broad brush there, psychologists! I guess it will be news to them that I managed to complete a 100-mile bike ride recently without any “significant physical and psychological challenges” except for those normally associated with biking 100 miles! And there were plenty of people in a wide variety of shapes, sizes, and ages who did the same…almost like we’re…people!

    • I totally agree. This is the one statement that to me shows how little they know about actual fat people; and how much they are relying on their own biases and stereotypes.

  3. But mostly it talks about how fat kids are abused and traumatized, and come from dysfunctional families. Well, yeah. Some of them. And this happens to thin kids too – so how about we deal with the abuser and the problematic family and stop blaming the fatty for getting fat.

    And in families with abusive behavior and a fat child, naturally it’s assumed that the abuse has somehow caused the fatness (kid gets yelled at /hit/ molested, kid comfort eats, kid gets fat, that psychobabble). Whereas nobody seems to consider that some parents may abuse a fat child (verbally, emotionally, and perhaps physically, by deprivation of food and/or forced exercise) for being fat. And the likelihood today is that that will be seen as normal parental concern, therefore not considered worth intervening in. Ask anyone who’s grown up with it, and you hear a different story.

    • This. Exactly this. My parents tend to focus only on my fatness. Not my amazing fiction writing, not my love of computers and my curiosity about software, not my enjoyment of books in an age where no one my age reads, not my good grades.
      I’m fat, that’s all there is, all there will be, until I am “regular size”(I’m US size 26, bmi in the mid-40’s, no health problems, and I love walking/dancing but am afraid to do either where people can see me because of the amount of catcalls involving expletives. I don’t like being yelled at).
      For them, I am an utter failure at life, and I don’t deserve to have nice clothes, be happy with myself, or eat meals I like prepared how I like.

      I eat the SAME exact things as my 180lb mom(she’s taller than me, but also large-built–a size 14-16), my 240lb sister(size 18, also built large), and my 320lb Father(6 feet tall, another large person). I often eat less than them–skipping things like ice cream or cookies they baked because I just don’t want any.
      “normal size” people in my family are also a rarity–no one with the same genetics is under a size 12-14. Most of the women are regularly on some sort of diet, and yo-yo between larger and smaller weights. Very few have health problems, all of them have been chronic smokers in the past—non-smokers have not had any serious problems.
      I live in the US, but I wouldn’t be surprised if this is the same for nearly every “deathly obese” person out there. We often get treated as if our only worth of person is in losing weight, getting down to that “target weight”, getting into “proper” size clothing, and I’m utterly sick of seeing it happen everywhere.
      Why does anyone THINK I’m loathful to start hiking? Because everyone will assume I want to use it to lose weight, and that is not what I enjoy about it at ALL.

  4. Amen, they can kiss my fat ass too. I am both fat & a survivor of a very abusive childhood, but I am fat because a large percentage of my relatives are fat & that is in MY genes/metabolism, my natural body type, not because of the abuse. I have been to a lot of meetings with 12-step programs for survivors, &, you know, a lot of them are average-sized, some very thin; I even ate with some of these people & you could not predict their eating behaviors by body size. These jackasses who write this claptrap not only do not know what they are talking about, not only do they hate us on general principle & love the idea of fat being a ‘defect’ & one which is our ‘fault’, they are also too damn lazy to try to dig deeper & learn the truth or keep an open mind.

    There is a lot of that around in our culture & I just got a reminder. My roommate is watching a police procedural & one of the suspects questioned is fat…& every possible negative trait is attributed to him, including being lonely & desperate for female attention, unable to get a date, so he stalks & ‘buys’ women. He is the typical self-hating fat person, as with the majority of fat people in this culture, & at one point says to the good-looking, buff, well-dressed detective, “I can’t help being this way, you know”, to which the detective blithely replies, “Of course you can. A low carb diet & regular exercise would solve your problem.” And that is the popular attitude…fat is a ‘problem’ which can easily be ‘solved’ if we are just not so lazy & weak-willed. Oh, & overheard from evening news…children should not be permitted to drink chocolate milk, as it will make them fat, despite the fact that in some fitness circles, it is considered the ideal replenishing drink after a workout.

    Amen…they can all kiss my fat ass.

  5. “The report tells us that anyone with a BMI over 30 has significant physical and psychological challenges when it comes to exercising.”

    They should have been in my house for the last hour—I was dancing and working up a sweat and I had a grand old time doing it too.

    • I know. I was flabergasted at that statement. Shows they know very little to nothing of the people they are supposed to be “treating”.

  6. The only “significant physical and psychological challenges when it comes to exercising” I have ever had, as someone with a BMI over 40, have been placed on me by a society that does not want me to exist. By a society that will not provide me clothing, equipment or space to exercise. By a society that publicly shames and humiliates me when I exercise in public. And by a society that refuses to believe MY experiences of my health and my eating/exercise over their own narrow minded views.

  7. @ Patsy- I saw this same espisode of the Mentalist a year or so ago and that scene that you reference made me so furious that I have never watched that show again.

    It is so frustrating to hear things like this- if you “JUST” did X, you wouldn’t be fat. Nope. Wrong. But the beleif is so pervasive!

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