Body Image Issue - I Feel Fat

Updated on February 03, 2012
J.K. asks from Audubon, IA
13 answers

Let me first say - this is probably going to be long. My question in short is that I'm having problems with my body image due to me thinking I'm fat, when I'm really not. How do I either 1) get back to where I used to be? (you'll have to read everything to really answer that question) 2) get happy with myself, where I am at?

I'm rather hypocritical when it comes to body image. One of my long time best friends, practically my sister, whom I lived with for a year, suffers from many things, among them bulimia, over-exercising, and occasional streaks of anorexia. She is a lot better now but when we were living together it was terrible and I cried a lot for her. Eventually I got her to get help and, like I said, she's doing a lot better.

With this in mind, I get angry at myself for the things I think/say to myself. But then, they're there so I can't ignore them. I've been really passive aggressively dissatisfied with my body. I constantly remark on how I'm fat, a cow, ugly, disgusting... all of which I say in a joking enough tone that my fiance can't take me seriously, although he knows I'm bothered by it. It's not like he wouldn't love me - he's dated bigger girls than me and prefers it! But... it's not about him and what he wants of me. He'd always think I'd look good.

But I don't like it. I've gained some weight since moving in with him, primarily due to the fact that I have more food to choose from and more freedom. I can't stop myself from eating sweet foods. I have candy, ice cream, cookies as I please. I try not to load the house with these thins - but the problem is I eat them when I'm at work. I get bored and eat eat eat. For about a week I only snacked on sunflower seeds and was so proud! But then I get the sweet craving and fall back in. I also drink a lot now (we're not alcoholics - we just enjoy ourselves!) since I'm young, this is the first time in my life I've had the option of drinking casually, and I do enjoy it. But it's empty calories, and I know it isn't helping. Before, I only drank water and iced tea and the very rare soda, or a glass of milk.

So... I gained 10lbs. I'm a small girl. I am 4'10". All my weight goes to my bum. Now while I may not be fat in anyone else's eyes, and quite thin compared to most of the women I work with - I do NOT like where I am at. I can approach is logically - almost none of my pants fit anymore - or emotionally - I feel like a fat cow. Either way I'm unhappy and yet "unwilling" (lazy?) to change anything. I like my food, my beer. Over the summer I exercised lot and dreamed of become toned, wash board stomach... now I'm just flabby and weak again.

I think part of this is my desire to be able to control my body. With a host of medical issues, diagnosed and currently undiagnosed, and a tendency to always be sick or in pain, I just.. want something to control about my physical existence. It's why I stretch my ears, I've realized. It's a way to control my body.

I don't want to get a health problem, an eating disorder, but I have it in my head. It's always been that way... I HATE my fat, I HATE my body, but I don't do anything about it. I should also say, and this is weird, I have a great deal of self confidence and care for myself, I take pride in myself. I think that's part of it tho too, being "fat" means I"m not caring for myself, so I get mad at myself...

Anyway... what should I do??? Do I make myself happy with what I am now or do I try to lose weight? and HOW do I do either of those? I hate that in reality I am thin and people would probably be jealous of my size and that I state to be a support of curvy girls and fighting again eating disorders, and here I am! hating my body for having fat! Thank you so much for reading everything, if you did...

What can I do next?

  • Add yourAnswer own comment
  • Ask your own question Add Question
  • Join the Mamapedia community Mamapedia
  • as inappropriate
  • this with your friends

So What Happened?

@Robin: Sorry, I don't pay attention to prepositions much :D I studied linguistics, so I don't hold to hard-and-fast grammar rules! Language is what you make it

But I know everyone is right and the biggest truth is that I should probably get back into therapy. Irony at its best - for a long time and still I want to go to school to learn dietetics. I'm fascinated by how the body processes and uses food and what is healthy and what is not so healthy - but I can't get myself to follow such ideals. I know it's a matter of mentality and self control and self love and positive thinking... So thank you. I just needed a rant and a kick in the right direction.

It's def not about my fiance tho (Did I accidentally call him my boyfriend? Woops! he IS my fiance) One of the big reasons I'm talking to you guys about this is because I know he'll just give me the "baby you're beautiful" speech, or how I could put on some more weight cuz he likes em curvy...

I just need to go back to therapy I think. Tonight seems to be a night of depression - Fiance wants to have fun and I feel too unattractive to be touched. geh.... But thank you ladies!

Featured Answers



answers from Milwaukee on

This is a real struggle that most women're just being honest about it.

The good news is that if you are within 10 pounds of where you want to be you can go on a 3 week diet if you have a big wedding or something you want to feel thin for and probably look amazing. I am right there with you. I am a size 6, but I have a belly on me. I come from a long line of big people. The only way I can be thin is if I really restrict calories....I am a dance teacher and when I used to be in competitions I could hard-core diet and look the part. Now, I am a dance and fitness teacher and so I especially feel self-conscious about my belly. But, the truth is I don't like to starve and I do enjoy wine and carbs. So, I just play games and if I have an upcoming event that I want to feel fabulous for I plan ahead with a 3 week diet or cleanse.

More Answers



answers from Redding on

I think you should see a therapist. I really do.
Reaching out to moms on here is fine, but none of us are really qualified to help you get to the bottom of your issues with your own body image.
"I hate my fat, but I don't change my diet".
Are you truly fat or is it just your perception of yourself?
If you are the only one that thinks you are fat, then you could have some type of body dysphoria going on. This can happen to the extent that someone who weighs 70 pounds and is a calorie away from organ failure still believes that they are too fat.
Only therapy, in my opinion, can get to the bottom of something like that.

I work with an amazing woman who is beautiful and intelligent and she has her stuff together. She is also a large woman and she is working on eating healthfully and getting more exercise. I had to go put a note on her desk and was sad to see a note she had written to herself.

I covered it up with a note that said, "You are FABULOUS!".
She IS fabulous. She is extremely pretty and has the greatest personalitly.
It hurt me to see that the thing she wanted to remind herself most of as she looked at her computer all day was, "YOU ARE FAT."

She just started going to therapy because she was getting lost on one thing about herself to the point she couldn't realize how fricking awesome she is. Yes, she has something to work on, she's got young kids and she wants to be healthy for them. Beating herself up isn't the best way to go about that. And she realizes it now.

I would schedule an appointment with someone who can help you with your issues. Sometimes we don't understand just how far deep or how far back these things have manifested.

This is just my opinion.

5 moms found this helpful


answers from Seattle on

Therapy, my dear...please try therapy.

This sounds very obsessive. I'm sorry...but I don't have any normal advice, because it sounds like you have a zillion reasons and questions to stay in control of your thoughts about your body....rather than the most basic simple response of....

Just love yourself. Just accept yourself. Just be yourself - because ALL others are taken.

4 moms found this helpful


answers from Kansas City on

Maybe this will sound cruel but I think you need to stop looking at yourself and how you look and feel, etc. and try to think more of others. Sometimes when we start to live life and do for others we forget about the things that are not major like how much we weigh and how much of what we eat. I know this is a deep rooted problem though. I had a friend who died from just what you're talking about. She was small, thin and short. She compared herself to others, everyone she met. She thought only of size and other body proportions. In time she became anorexic, and the whole thing your friend did. She is now dead. I miss her and think how much she had to offer in life and yet she only had one thought in life and that was how she compared and looked, etc. I'm sure you too have much to offer in life. You need to find a purpose in life and start living it. You mentioned you get 'bored and eat and eat'. Find something to do and make yourself do it so you aren't bored. Find something or someone to make life worth living. Life is short. I hope you'll get help if you can't do this yourself. I will also add that it's so easy for all of to do this with the 'I'm fat' thing as we are in a world where they show women everywhere, magazines, TV, movies, etc. who are rail thin and fixed to hide flaws. Ignore them. They aren't 'real'.

2 moms found this helpful


answers from Cumberland on

J.-snap out of it-and stop ending sentences in a preposition.

You brought up the fact that you think your -whatever he is-would like /love you even if you were fat-but I don't think you really believe that-so he's doing something to make you feel insecure. Don't lose weight for any other reason than to be healthy and prolong your life-don't worry about what BF thinks or says-and get the negative script out of your head-you're your own worst enemy! Even a little effort at your age will most likely yield great -and fast results!


answers from San Francisco on

I'd get to counseling if I were you. When I was in late middle/early high school I had a friend with bulimia and two with anorexia. My experience has been that when the people in your life are dealing with eating disorders it has the potential to affect your own thinking about yourself.
Also, personally, it helps me to have a general plan of what I am going to eat. Pick a sensible well balanced diet and make meal plans that you follow most of the time. If you are bored, take up a new hobby.



answers from Chattanooga on

I understand where you are coming from as I am 4'11" and weigh 187 myself and pass out easily and hate my weight. Everyone has to have some fat on their body to be healthy. How much d you weigh just curious? If you want to change yourself try eating more healthy foods even sunflower seeds can be unhealthy because of the salt, Do you like fruits? veggies, There are so many healthy choices you can snack on that are good for you that wn't make you put on weight. Though with the medical issues stopping drinking may help as some of what you may call flab could be from water rention I know I had to limit my drinks to no more than 2 a week because of health concerns. I hope things improve hugs



answers from Madison on

change your job. You are clearly bored and have too much time on your hands to be thinking the way you do. Once you get a bit of excitement in your life, you will find you have other things to think about. Start some interesting projects to keep yourself occupied.


answers from Salt Lake City on


I think you will need to decide what you hate more, and what you are willing to live with...Is it worse to hate your body and enjoy all the cookies and alcoholic beverages you want, or is it worse to give up those items or restrict them to "only holidays" and have a body you can accept?

The way I look at it is this: I enjoy cigarettes (well, I enjoy-ed...I have quit). It sucks, because I really did enjoy them, but they harmed my health and were expensive. It is hard to give them up, but now I have a lot more energy and hopefully have extended my life...along with avoiding some horrid diseases and premature wrinkling.
I enjoy coffee very much. However, I have anxiety and ongoing sleep issues which are worsened by caffeine. So I can choose coffee and sleep issues, or no coffee and get a good nights rest (or as I have chosen...switch to half caff and get an ok nights sleep!)
Same thing with sugar, junk food, alcohol etc. I love my treats, but the sugar wreaks havoc with my sleep cycle and makes me feel like junk, along with weight gain. Many people have issues with foods they love...I have friends who have had to give up chocolate because it causes migraines, or give up bread because they have celiac's disease.

You will have to decide. You can enjoy your treats and beer and keep the weight. You can moderate the treats and alcohol and save them for special occasions or start counting calories. I know, it totally sucks when you hit that point where you have to start worrying about "calories". I was always tiny until I got pregnant, and now I have to religiously count my calories and exercise 5-6 days a week just to NOT gain weight. It is always a battle. And sometimes I choose not to fight the battle and I just "enjoy" myself and gain 20 lbs (like I did the last 6 months) I am kicking myself for letting myself go, and I am working it off.

The other thing is, being thin isn't going to instantly make you like yourself better. So, yes, decide what you want to do regarding what you eat and drink...and ya know, it is perfectly fine if you decide to just "enjoy yourself", as long as you accept the consequences...but I would also work on other areas in your life. Set some goals. I can accept myself and love myself no matter what weight I am at because I am proud of what I have accomplished in other areas of my life.


answers from Houston on

You are not eating or tinking in a healthy way. You can't just get comfortable eating junk food just because it is there. I think you ahve a point, it's about self control... that could be a depressant for you, which you then feel bad about yourself and then about how you look.

You shouldn't lose weight to appease your body, you should lose the weight to get back to a healthier you, and you do that by excersizing, being active and eating healthy. Now, I'm not saying you can't have junk food or sweets, but you need some portion control and self control. If you also have healthy snacks around, then grab that instead of a cookie. You can't overeat on sweets when you aren't always buying them or surrounded by them. Also, drink looots of water!

These won't just effect your body in a healthier way, but you will have more energy, a better feeling of self control as well as a healthier outlook about yourself and your appearance.

I'm like you though, just under 5'0, thin, but I have my problem areas... got me some love handles, a pouch and developing a double chin. While I am not overweight, my body isn't as healthy as it can or should be, and I am working on it. It does feel much better. Have you ever heard of 'creeping obesity'? it's when people gain 5-10 lbs a year and they don't get it off. In just 3-4 years, they have gained almost 40 lbs, usually more as bad habits sets in and then it is a struggle to even get back to a healthy range.

It isn't about perfection or comparing yourself to others, but about getting to a healthier you.



answers from Kansas City on

Really, someone read that and commented on ending sentences in prepositions--I read it quickly and only saw 2...not a big deal! Anyways, no matter what the number says on the scale, you have to be happy! If eating better would make you happy, then do that! If losing 10lbs would make you feel better, then do that! Just worry about how you feel--not how others make you feel!



answers from Minneapolis on

Hi J.-
Don't know what Audubon, IA is like, but I'm guessing a part of this is the February BLAHs. (I think that The Shining was filmed in February-ha ha.) Hold on, kid, spring will come!

Yes, therapy is awesome. There's no dishonor in taking care of your health mentally or physically.

However, our culture makes us all a little nuts, doesn't it? Sometimes, we need to just drop out of culture. That is, instead of watching TV and reading magazines with photos of impossible Hollywood actresses, just DON'T. Really. DON'T.

You wanted a kick, so here goes: Go play outside! Take a walk! Take the dog for a walk! Play with your friends! Don't care what you do out there, but you can't stay indoors! Find something to do or clean your room! (Do I sound like a mom or what?) But really, we need to practice our own medicine, esp. in February.



answers from Appleton on

Stop thinking of of yourself in negative terms. When you call yourself 'fat'--'cow' ect you are pulling yourself down into a negative cesspool of anger and hurt.
It does not matter what your size is you are still a loveable person. When you look into a mirror start thinking beautiful woman -- loveable person -- happy to be me.
I recommend counseling but all the counseling in the world will not help you until you stop the negative self-talk.

For Updates and Special Promotions
Follow Us

Related Questions