Monday, November 5, 2007

Do people treat you differently depending on what you weigh?

Well, this question may seem like a no brainer. Of course they do. We have all read study after study about obese people being passed over for jobs or promotions because of their weight. Others say that we don’t get the same level of service other customers do in a store or assistance when our car is broken down along side the road.

In my case I don’t think the way I am treated is the choice of the other person, rather, it is influenced by my behavior and my demeanor. Let me see if I can unpack this….

Now that I have more energy and feel better about myself, I smile more, care more about my appearance, have a bounce in my step and am more talkative. All of these things make people pay more attention to me and treat me differently. I don’t care what you look like, if you walk around like Eyore saying woe is me, my life is awful, nothing will ever get better… can bet I will avoid you like the plague (which incidentally is not as deadly as it was in the middle ages).

I know 4 short months ago, I walked down the hall of my office hunched over looking at the ground. I tried to fade into the background so that I wouldn’t be noticed for the slob I felt I was. I avoided group activities like the annual golf outing or the Christmas party. (Of the salary employees, I am the only one with a weight issue.) I didn’t want to be the person that made the golf cart flip on its side. I was always very self conscious about showing my dogs in conformation. I disliked showing my dogs because most of the women who show dogs are cute and thin and wear these adorable suits. I was afraid the judge would be too busy watching my rolls bounce up and down to notice my dog’s nice movement. Conformation Dog shows will be topic of another post some day.

Now, I bound down the hall (often doing my Molly Shannon as Mary Katherine Gallagher “Superstar” impression). People meet my eyes because I am not looking down anymore. They smile at me because I am already smiling at them. They are talking to me because I am starting a conversation with them.

So yeah, people already treat me differently because of my weight loss. But not for the reasons the studies say they do.
They are treating me differently because I am treating myself differently.

1 comment:

Karen said...

Now I am going to argue with you. People I know have always thought you were the most smiley, cheerful, caring person and they got that from you walking in the door of my work. Everyone tells me what a sweetheart you are.
And another thing. All those other women showing dogs are not all that cute. I'm guessing a huge dose of backstage backstabbing and, quite frankly, really dorky shoes. You have always had it all over them.
If people have treated you according to what you projected, prepare yourself for the monster lovefest now. Well, at the salon, anyway.