THAT RUBS DISCUSSION – FAT PEOPLE ON PLANES

I was reading a post on The Salott (RUBS) forum on Facebook which has subsequently been removed. The topic was fat people on planes taking up more than their allocated space and making normal sized peoples plane journeys miserable. It was an interesting topic which had merit on both sides.
I myself am a large person. Yes fat, but also very large in frame. My mother is a very large woman and my grand father was a very large man. It’s my DNA profile and I have been this way my entire life. To add to that, I will admit, I have trouble controlling my eating. It has been the greatest challenge of my entire life and one that I am still failing at. 
 
I have tried over and over again for the past 30 years to remedy the situation but have failed on every occasion. Unfortunately for me it is an addiction. There are several underlying reasons as to why I am this way, and I will never give up trying to remedy the situation. But metabolism is not on my side. I will admit, I am very jealous of people who can eat what they want and not gain weight.
I would like at this stage to point out, that over eating is an addiction like any other. Alcoholism, drug use, sex addiction, gambling, shopping addiction etc. Some may not want to believe that, but I can tell you it is absolutely 100% true. Unfortunately though, while an alcoholic or drug user may be seen as someone who has problems far beyond the substance abuse and are seen predominantly through sympathetic eyes, persons with eating disorders are just seen as lazy and unwilling to make necessary changes. I see this perception as a massive injustice.
Having experienced it first hand, I can tell you my addiction is very real. I exercise, I try to eat healthy, but sooner or later I always fall off the wagon. ALWAYS. And every time I hate myself for it. I will never give up trying and with all my being hope that one day I will overcome it. Honestly though, I am scared that I will die before I can achieve it. Believe you me, if someone offered the opportunity for me to be put away in a comfortable jail cell for 6 months, where I would only be able to eat the food provided, be subjected to daily exercise and not have to worry about my family paying the bills and needing my support, I would do it in a heart beat. That is how desperate I wish it so.
 
Now quickly back to the plane issue. I think the original author of that very divisive post today, whilst extremely uneducated in their approach, did make a valid point. It is unfair that someone having paid for a seat in what is already a very uncomfortable cattle train, should have to endure someone encroaching on their space. I can understand the frustration. The fact of the matter is, I am big and I also do it unwillingly. As a big person, I make sure that I always get an aisle seat, so for the duration I can lean into the aisle, as uncomfortable as that is for me. And I always apologise in advance when I initially take my seat, as embarrassing as that is for me. But I own up to it and the majority of times other passengers are very nice with me.
The one thing that irked me most about the post today, and some other subsequent responses, was the lack of understanding of what it is actually like for the fat person next to them. First of all, the shame issue. Yes, we are all embarrassed about it. I don’t know about other large people, but in a perfect world I would never have to board a flight again. Just to avoid the shame of it. Then, the kicker. If you, the small person, think its uncomfortable for you, just for a second try and imagine how uncomfortable it is for us. My hips dig into the arm rests and after a while it usually becomes very painful. I have to keep my arms up on the seat in front for the entire flight just so i limit the time I am encroaching on your space. My knees are jammed against the seat in front for the entire time. I cannot use the food tray. And I have to embarrassingly ask the flight attendant for seat belt extension. The one reserved for mothers with baby children. It’s horrible.
Believe me when I tell you that flying is a nightmare for me, and I would suggest that is the case for many that share my affliction. So while you may once in a blue moon be unlucky enough to be subjected to a fat person on your flight, remember one thing, we are subjected to one on every single god damn flight. Ourselves.
* One day I will write an article of what it is really like to live the life of of an obese man or woman. Some of you may be surprised of the day to day difficulties we face. 

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Discussion

  1. Eric Wadge

    Being a food addict is different to being an addict to other substances in one of very important way.

    Unlike a tobacco addict for instance who can kick the habit by never smoking, we are required to eat every day. Every day you are doing the same act (eating) which is the basis of the addiction. Imagine a smoking addict try to kick the addiction whilst still smoking three cigarettes everyday. One day like is going to throw him a curveball and he’ll be back to smoking in no time.

    I’ve gone for months at a time eating healthily but invariably one day, with a menu in hand, a switch will go off and I’ll be ordering from somewhere other than the salad section.

    1. davidoziborg

      You make a valid point. Thanks for sharing.

  2. Laz

    Airplanes have been used as a means of transporting people since the 1930s. In that time, the size of the average human has actually increases by a couple of inches and about 15lbs.
    In that time, airline seats have actually gotten smaller as has the space between rows. It’s a matter of cramming as much as possible onto the aircraft.
    The argument of larger people encroaching on the space of others, isn’t so much the person’s fault as it is that if the airline’s. Certain US airlines in the US, actually tried to implement extra charges for people of larger stature.
    Long story short, hate the game, not the player.

    1. davidoziborg

      Well said mate.

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