Monday, August 29, 2011

matter of opinion

People inevitably see the world in different ways. Our perception is shaped by the society in which we live and the dominant culture as well as the way we were brought up and what we were exposed to. And I've always believed that there is no such thing as a common reality. We all exist in our own realities and when it comes to living together, those realities overlap. But I have never been able to fully appreciate someone else's reality. This is why I don't really understand it when somebody tells me I look thin.

I know that the people who tell me are my friends and colleagues and some of them are definitely people who I would trust to never, ever lie to me and to always do what I think is best for me. These are people whose opinion I greatly value when it comes to any other aspect of life and I suppose those are aspects of my reality that overlap with theirs. It seems hugely hypocritical of me to love and value these opinions so much and suddenly change my mind about them when they talk about my weight.

I don't think I'm so far gone to actually think that they might lie to me on purpose in some act of sabotage. When it comes to some people, I simply don't understand what they are saying to me. Like when flatmates say that they've never seen me look so thin. That comment doesn't even compute because I know I've gained weight and from the way my clothes fit, I know I'm bigger. It just confuses me and I'm left with a real uneasy feeling. The more they say it, the more I feel like they might hinder my weight loss attempts.

When it comes to my bosses, like Prof CNM telling me I look thin, I believe it, but in the sort of way where I feel like I'm humouring them along. Like when an elderly demented lady tells me that strange beings visited her in the night, I can totally believe that that is exactly what she thinks is true, but at the same time, I know that it isn't true because she's demented. That is not the say that I think my bosses are demented old ladies, but just that we obviously have completely different views of weight. I feel like I could lose at least another 10kg, whereas they feel that I'm thin enough for them to be concerned.

In a strange way, when it comes to my weight, the people who care about me the most matter the least. They are biased, they want me to be fit and healthy and can't look at my weight objectively because they know I'm not eating as much as I should. Strangers who don't know me can only judge me by my weight because they don't know me. For all they know, I could be somebody who eats like a pig but never gains weight. So those are the more accurate opinions. Until I have a complete stranger tell me I'm thin, I will take all other comments with a very large grain of salt.

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