Tuesday, April 26, 2016

"You're Fat," As Some/Many Deaf People Like to Say (and F**k Them)

This is going to be a bit of a rant on the Deaf community, so if that kind of thing bothers you, please do not read this post.

A few other things first: I am Deaf. I did not grow up in Deaf culture as much as I would have liked to. My first widespread exposure to Deaf culture was at Gallaudet University, which was the ONLY college I considered going to. I really needed to be around other people like me.

Anyway, from a very young age, I did have contact and friendships with Deaf folks of all ages (but never widespread. That contact was limited to small groups or one-on-one interactions). And I noticed one thing. Many were blunt. MEAN blunt. "You're fat." "You have awful pimples." It goes on and on, but weight always seemed to be the number-one concern/complaint that Deaf people made about others. It is one reason that, as a teenager who did not meet society's ideals, I did not go out of my way to socialize with Deaf people. I did not need any negative stuff pointed out to me by friends and strangers alike, stuff I knew perfectly well was going on with me. But, yeah, I still chose to go to Gallaudet, and all was well.

About 2009, my weight started to creep up again, and I pretty much stopped socializing with Deaf people at that time because I could not stand their comments. Now that I am living in Ellensburg and with an interpreter, I have more reasons to socialize with Deaf people and have been excited about it. Wary, too, of course. Because I knew the weight comments were coming. And today, it happened. A guy I had met only once before and ran into today asked what I did for a living. I said I was a writer. His eyes lit up, and he said, "Ah, I understand now. I've noticed that people who write are fat. Look at me. I'm thin and active."

You know what? FUCK YOU, YOU HORRIBLE PERSON. Maybe he saw my expression or whatever but he said something like, "Sorry." And whatever, I don't remember exactly what he said because I was fuming.

Again: FUCK YOU. And fuck you to all of you insensitive Deaf people. I do know many who are not like this. (And thank you for being nice!!!)

Sure, part of this "sensitivity" of mine comes from being raised in hearing culture. But you know what? I don't care anymore. I am not gonna give these rude Deaf people a free pass anymore. YOU ARE RUDE. YOU ARE HORRIBLE.

Why are people fat? Maybe they're pregnant and have gained weight. Maybe some are writers, sure, who sit and don't exercise enough and don't eat healthfully enough. Maybe some have medical conditions. Maybe some enjoy being fat. IT DOES NOT MATTER. Don't be an asshole. Whether you are hearing or Deaf, don't be an asshole.

Deaf and hearing parents alike, please teach your Deaf and hearing children manners.

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