Calling someone “fat” is a painful insult. But why is that?
That’s what everyone was left wondering after a mother of two named Allison shared her story of what happened when she went swimming with her children recently. When the 30-year-old’s daughter called her fat, Allison had a brilliant response, and now her message is spreading like wildfire across the internet.
When Allison Kimmey was only 14, she started dieting. She was able to maintain a size two to four through graduate school, but it was difficult and she wasn’t happy. Then three years ago at age 27, Allison reached size eight and realized that she’d be much happier if she allowed herself to stop struggling against her weight gain.
To motivate herself, Allison started an Instagram account, @allisonkimmey, where she shares pictures and inspiration. Allison’s body positivity spreads joy and motivates her fans, but her important message doesn’t always reach everyone.
Recently, Allison went to the pool with her son and daughter. When it was time to go, Allison’s daughter became angry and called her fat. Allison describes the incident on Instagram:
Me: “What did you say about me?”
Her: “I said you were fat, mama. I’m sorry.”
Me: “Let’s talk about it. The truth is, I am not fat. No one IS fat. It’s not something you can BE. But I do HAVE fat. We ALL have fat. It protects our muscles and our bones and keeps our bodies going by providing us with energy. Do you have fat?”
Her: “Yes! I have some here on my tummy.”
Me: “That’s right! So do I and so does your brother!”
Her brother: “I don’t have any fat. I’m the skinniest. I just have muscles.”
Me: “Actually, everyone, every single person in the world has fat. But each of us has different amounts.”
Her brother: “Oh right! I have some to protect my big muscles! But you have more than me.”
Me: “Yes, that’s true. Some people have a lot, and others don’t have very much. But that doesn’t mean that one person is better than the other. Do you both understand?”
Both: “Yes, mama.”
Me: “So can you repeat what I said?”
Them: “Yes! I shouldn’t say someone is fat because you can’t be just fat, but everyone HAS fat and it’s okay to have different fat.”
Me: “Exactly right!”
Not only did Allison want to teach her children how to talk to others, but she also thought it was important to spread the message that everyone is equal regardless of body shape. Now her post on Instagram has gone viral.
“If I shame my children for saying it then I am proving that it is an insulting word and I continue the stigma that being fat is unworthy, gross, comical, and undesirable,” writes Allison.
What an inspiring woman! We need to be better at encouraging each other instead of judging each other on how we look on the outside. Share if you agree!