Below is a copy of a post I submitted to TiTP. I know they are super busy and get a monstrous amount of troll submissions they have to weed through so I wanted to put this up here just in case they don’t get a chance to post it on their site:
Trigger Warning: government sanctioned fat shaming and all the normal stuff that goes along with seeking medical treatment while fat.
My name is Simon J and my blog is simonjisforjenius.wordpress.com and I’m also a regular commenter in the Dances With Fat community. I don’t use tumblr very much other than to check into other sites so if you have questions please feel free to email me or contact me through the wordpress site. I am a 46 year old asexual man (but attracted to men, so I identify as queer) who has been fat my entire life. I was tortured and abused by my military father who thought the abuse would make me “man up” and not be gay. I have every personality “disorder” on the spectrum but in spite of all that, I live a life filled with happiness and even hope.
I was deeply distressed to discover that my home state of California is one of the only places in the world that sanctions fat shaming by law and statute.
This came about at the beginning of the year when I discovered diabetic ulcers on the bottom of my feet and was warned of the usual consequence of this. Of course I was devastated, I was slated for an artificial knee transplant and was thrilled that I might be able to walk again but my orthopedist flat out refused any sort of transplant until we knew what would come the issues with my feet.
After the waves of depression passed, I got angry, very, very angry. I had literally done everything I could to take care of my health but never had an ounce of cooperation or sympathy from medical providers over the years. I was shamed, embarrassed, accused of being a liar about food, not listened to, physically abused, poked and prodded, unnecessarily tested, etc…
I wanted to sue, I wanted to have a very public trial and put these idiots who had abused me on trial for the years and years of fatshaming and medical malpractice they put me through. Fatshaming that had lead to the likely amputation of both of my feet.
I put in calls to just about every lawyer in the greater San Diego area while me and my mother compiled every receipt, prescription, medical record, doctor note that we could find (thank god she is such a meticulous record keeper).
And I waited for the return calls. With such strong evidence I figured lawyers would be beating down my door to take this case. Of the dozens and dozens of lawyers that called…THREE returned my call. THREE. And two of the three was just a secretary saying that they could not take my case.
The lawyer who did agree to meet with me in person told me basically this: The State of California recognizes by statute passed in the legislature that there is an absolute link between Obesity and many health problems. So this may not sound like such a big deal because that is the common misconception amongst most of the population.
But what he explained to me is this, that because it this link is recognized by law that it is next to impossible for fat individuals to sue for medical malpractice in California, especially if you are seeking legal remedy for any malpractice relating of the “common diseases” associated with obesity (and this is everything from hang nails to bi-polar disorder). So not only is it next to impossible for me (or any other fat person) to seek remedy for medical malpractice in California, that the malpractice insurance companies would come after me for legal expenses and there is a 95% chance they would win it all PLUS extra money.
Please let this sink in…if you are fat in California, you do not have the same rights to the courts that “thin” people do.
I honestly don’t know what I’m going to do. I need special care because of my mental health issues and can’t afford to just pick up and leave.