I went through shit for being obese. I was recently hospitalised due to stress and my “unhealthy” lifestyle. My clothes are size 18. I can’t even fit most XL outfits (especially those produced with the Asian market in mind) and always have to settle with double or sometime the triple-X labels.
I admit, at times, being fat and obese don’t do me good. I sweat like a pig within the first 10 minutes of a dance class (and it was in an air conditioned studio). I get easily tired after 15 minutes of jogging or whatever sports that be. To the society, I am unattractive. I don’t make head turns. Quoting writer Tee Lin Say, when men look at me, their first thought was to run. Who wants to deal with a 600 pound baby elephant, eh?
If I was never hospitalised or if I had read this article prior to being warded, I would have published something equally nasty in return. Perhaps I’ll find a way to bump into you and spit on your face without hesitation. Hateful words of a stranger don’t affect me.
But I was surprised to see how crushed I was reading this. I, Nazirah Ashari, perhaps one of the most confident fat girls in the city of Kuala Lumpur – felt completely devastated by your monstrous and distasteful words. Your offensive writing resound in my head and for the first time in my life, I was broken by a stranger’s depiction of fatness.
Ms Tee, you know what you reminded me of?
You are one of those bullies who thinks they are too good and too superior by “society’s standard” that they deserve every right to talk to people the way you do in that disgusting article. You are the reason fat people like me gets hurt for things they shouldn’t be hurt for. Your hateful words made me rethink society’s perception of my fat self and I’m being honest when I say, for a few seconds, I am disgusted by my fatty nature. You are a reminder of a society so sick that they’re lost in the world of unreal designed-perfection and ignorance. To sum it all up, you are a bully. A monstrous one at that too.
I am a plus size by choice. Ah, the term plus size is too sympathetic. So let me rephrase that:
I am a fat girl by choice. For as long as I have lived, I have always been big in size. Always the biggest and one of the tallest in class and as I get older, my body doesn’t seem to shrink. I am not even embarrassed of that fact nor that I find myself incompetent, stupid, undisciplined or quoting you in this disturbing The Star article, “… have a lower social standing.” Ms Tee, please be known that I don’t give a damn about where I stand in the social scale.
I once was quite a healthy fat girl – size 16, active, was able to juggle a hectic part-time 8-10 hours barista job while studying. I maintained good grades and graduated with a first class degree. I was once a rather healthy size 18 lass who went on TV to talk about fat girls empowerment. I received messages and tweets from fellow young fat girls who was inspired by me. I made an impact. And I hope and believe I still am.
But what do you do? You are in a greater position to leave an impact and to inspire yet you did none. You disgraced the already-shattered name of journalism. You give bad name to nice slender individuals out there. You broke hearts. You crushed people.
You said, men, or people would wanna run away from baby elephants aka fat people like me. But do you know who never run away and continue dealing with people like me and my nonsense? My family and my friends – the people I love. Who needs shallow minded men or strangers when you have friends and family who cares and love you for who you are. Friends and family who are there by your side when you’re at your best and your worse. Friends and family whose take on the idea of being fat solely as being unhealthy, and every nag or advice comes from a good place called love. Friends and family who will never crush me. Never.
You know what, I’m still gonna let the old me use the magic words. Tee Lin Say, be very embarrassed of yourself, you’re such a disgraced and… fuck you very much.