I talk honestly and openly about my experiences with mental illness, fibromyalgia, and chronic fatigue syndrome through the lens of feminism, fat acceptance and process theology. I also do recipe and book reviews. My mission is to spread the message that hope is always real for a better life, despite living in a world that is often very harsh.

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

How Could I Not Know?

Everyone needs an out when incredibly frustrated or sad.  Sometimes when I feel like I'm going to explode with emotion I post my complaint on twitter or tumblr, so that I don't hurt the people in the room with me.  I post it on those sites, because I don't know the majority of my followers personally and so it seems like a fairly safe way of releasing emotions.  I don't post anything mean, it's just a way to quickly release some steam.  This is what I did yesterday after talking to my insurance carrier, who said that I might not be covered for much longer if I don't lose some weight. This is what I wrote on tumblr:
Thin privilege is not being denied for health insurance, because your height to weight ratio doesn’t match their specifications.  
Thin privilege is not being told that you need to lose twenty pounds in less than a month in order to get health insurance.
It felt good to get that off my chest! My comments got mixed reactions-two people "liked" what I said and two people reblogged it and added their own comments, making fun of my words. I set their comments to "ignore," so that I wouldn't be bothered by them anymore. I wouldn't even bring this incident up, except that I wanted to comment on why some of their words were so ridiculous. The negative comment I remember the most was along the lines,
"I bet this person doesn't even want to know why her insurance has those requirements! Get in shape!"
What I want to say to this person is, of course I know why my insurance said what they did! Living in this society, how could I not? According to my insurance company, my height to weight ratio indicates that I am at risk for health problems. But there are many ways of determining health and the height to weight ratio thing is about the least effective way to do it. How about the fact that I have excellent blood pressure and cholesterol levels? How about the fact that I am one of the healthiest eaters my friends know? How about the fact that healthcare should be affordable to all, regardless of a person's height and weight, because of the fact that they're human?! How could I not know? I am surrounded by diet talk all the time. Commercials, facebook status updates, conversations by almost everyone I know...so yes, I know that our society takes one look at me and automatically assumes that I am unhealthy and that I should lose weight. And yes, you are correct, in that I do not want to hear anymore about it from an anonymous person that I've never met! I want a space where I can vent and not be attacked for it. I want a space where I will be treated with dignity and respect instead of condescension. I want to be valued as a human being and I want it known that my worth as a person has nothing to do with my weight, height, or overall fitness level. I am a child of Godde. I am a creative and caring person. I have much to offer the world and the fact that I do not fit nicely into your view of what the "right" person looks like will not diminish the greatness of my future.
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Letters from the Asylum – Newton, Guns and Mental Illness
The American government can't keep draining mental health services and then wonder why people mentally snap and either hurt themselves or others.

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