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11 Things Only Former Fat Kids Understand

There will always be a fat kid inside you.

1. You developed self-consciousness way too early.
Even in grade school, you were well aware that you weren’t one of the popular kids. In fact, you were teased about your weight, maybe even bullied! No wonder you had self-esteem issues at 10.

2. At school, you tended to blend into the background rather than wanting to be noticed.
It was just better to not stand out at all than to be the center of attention—and not in a good way. Besides, people didn’t seem to expect much from you as a fat kid anyway; you were never invited to play sports or offered plum roles in school plays. (Screw those teachers for not believing in you.)

3. You couldn’t help but envy thinner girls in their tiny tops and shorts.
You, on the other hand, were wearing your mom's—and okay, dad’s—clothes at 12 years old. And when baggy clothes became a thing, you had to be all over that trend.

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4. Wearing a swimsuit was a cause for shame.
It wasn’t easy seeing skinny girls prancing around in bikinis while you ambled along in a one-piece—or worse, a T-shirt and shorts over a one-piece. Even now that you’ve slimmed down, you still feel a bit self-conscious in a bikini, what with your near-naked body subject to all those people’s stares.

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5. Your crushes would pair off with one of the skinny chicks and it was always heartbreaking.
That “Dear Diary, Carlo sat beside me today” hot dog commercial in the ‘90s was basically your life. You’re sure you’d have a shot at winning your own Carlo’s heart…IF ONLY YOU’D LOSE 20 POUNDS.

6. Once you lost weight, you became more confident, gained more attention from guys, and were like, “So this is how the skinny girls feel!”
People in general also seemed to like you more once you had shed the pounds, which was great and all, but kinda sucked because you realized just how prejudiced people really are about appearances—and they’re not even aware of it.

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7. People—especially those who haven’t seen you since you were huge—keep asking you how you lost all that weight.
“Yes, I watch what I eat. No, I’m not bulimic.”

8. You still have pictures of your fat younger self lying around, which always draw surprise and a few laughs from the people you show them to.
It’s not too bad, because they think you look soooo cuuuute with your double chin and chubby cheeks. But try telling that to the nine-year-old girl who was teased right before that picture was taken. (No wonder she’s frowning.)

9. Hearing compliments about your slimmer frame never fails to give you a thrill.
Only because you know how far you've had to go to get from there to here.

10. You harbor a fear that you’ll gain all that weight back, because the days you were bigger are still fresh in your mind.
So you watch the portions you eat, sneak in some exercise every week, and step on the scale regularly. Just, you know, to make sure those pounds hadn’t crept back into your body while you were asleep.

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11. There will always be a fat kid inside you.
You're careful not to fat-shame full-figured folks because you, too, were once a hefty kid given hell about your weight. You know how people—even kids in school!—can be cruel without meaning to be, and how what seems like harmless teasing can actually leave lifelong scars. Fat people may be an easy target, but if anyone’s jumping on the body-shaming bandwagon, it sure as hell ain’t gonna be you.

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