Recently, the ABC aired a segment about discrimination by health professionals for body size. It was reported that many of us with weight issues avoid visiting a doctor for fear of being judged.
Fat shaming is a real thing. Over my life I have been bullied many times because of my size. There was no getting away from it as my shape and size made me stand out from others. My sisters who were nurses often told me horror stories about how the obese were viewed by medical professionals. They also said that they and their patients were treated with disdain.
For this reason, I avoided visiting a medical clinic of any form until my mid-thirties. It wasn’t until my closest friend gently convinced me to have a check for genetically passed down health issues that I visited a clinic. It is an understatement to say I was afraid. I feared the worst – bullying by those who were supposed to help me. But I have been fortunate as my local doctors have treated me with kindness and understanding. However, this was not always my experience.
I visited two specialists in the city to help me with stomach pains. Although I had lost a significant amount of weight, I was treated as a sub-standard human being. The first specialist was obviously uncomfortable with my size during the consultation. Two weeks before scheduled keyhole surgery she phoned me to tell me she could not go through with the operation. Apparently, the beds were not wide enough in the hospital where she worked, and she was afraid of litigation. The next specialist was willing to operate but took it upon himself to lecture me about my weight. He also informed me that my cholesterol levels were slightly raised. God knows what he would have said had I seen him at my largest! And I’m not sure how my weight influenced the pain.
Here is the link for the ABC segment: https://fb.watch/gu53cOrNWy/
Have you experienced discrimination for your weight? Contact me for a chat.
In love, Jenny